Marciello completes Macau GT World Cup sweep
Sunday 19th November, 2023 - 3:54pm
Rafaelle Marciello is now a two-time Macau GT Cup and FIA GT World Cup winner after dominating the feature race on the Guia circuit.
The Swiss driver was unstoppable in his Team Landgraf Mercedes, backing up his pole and Qualification Race win with a lights-to-flag victory.
He did so ahead of the best driver in Macau GT Cup history as well, leaving Edorardo Mortara stranded on four wins, while Augusto Farfus finished third after some mid-race misfortune for Maro Engel and Sheldon van der Linde.
Marciello made a perfect start from pole, gapping his fellow Mercedes driver Engel (Craft-Bamboo) on the long run to Lisboa.
Engel, meanwhile, came under early pressure from Mortara (Audi Sport Asia Team Absolute) before establishing a gap of just under a second.
It then became a see-sawing battle for the minor podium places with Mortara at times closing onto the back of Engel, and at other times coming under pressure himself from Sheldon van der Linde in the Team WRT BMW.
The top four ran in that order until lap 7 when the race was neutralised by the safety car after David Chen crashed his Harmony Racing Ferrari at Lisboa.
While that initially reduced Marciello’s advantage, the lap 10 restart could not have gone better for the leader.
As he led the field away Engel’s car slowed with a mechanical issue, which both ruled him out of the race, and delayed the rest of the field.
Marciello ended up with the best part of three seconds up his sleeve as Mortara moved into second and van der Linde third.
A lap later there was misfortune for van der Linde, who had to surrender third place to Augusto Farfus (Rowe Racing BMW) to pit for a new tyre.
That left the top three reasonably spaced out, Marciello cruising to a 2.5s win from Mortara, who was a further 1.7s clear of Farfus.
Daniel Serra ended up fourth in his Harmony Racing Ferrari ahead of Daniel Juncadella (Craft-Bamboo Mercedes) and the best-placed Porsche driver, Laurens Vanthoor (TORO Racing).
Christopher Haase (Audi Sport Asia Team Absolute) ended up seventh ahead of Alessio Picariello (Luanzhou International Circuit Porsche), Earl Bamber (D2 Racing Team Porsche) and Ye Hongli (R&B Racing Porsche).