October 7, 2017 (Braselton, Ga.) – For the second straight season, drivers Alessandro Balzan and Christina Nielsen captured the IMSA SportsCar Championship GT-Daytona driver’s championship. And with today’s result at the 20th Petit Le Mans, Ferrari captured the GT-Daytona manufacturer’s championship.
Driving the no. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 488 GT3 Balzan and Nielsen secured their championship by taking the green flag of today’s 10-hour Petit Le Mans – such was their championship advantage heading into today’s race. Joined by their teammate for the North American Endurance Cup, Matteo Cressoni, they endured a challenging Petit Le Mans. Despite an incident and time spent making repairs, the Ferrari finished in ninth position in GT-Daytona.
Balzan and Nielsen captured one victory and six additional podiums to take the championship by 20 points. On the strength of those results, the lone Ferrari representative in the GT-Daytona class, Ferrari captured the manufacturer’s title for the class.
For Balzan and Nielsen, it was their second straight GT-Daytona championship, both captured with the Ferrari 488 GT3. This is the fourth driver championship in five years for Ferrari after Scuderia Corsa captured the 2013 Grand-Am GT and 2015, 2016 and 2017 IMSA GT-Daytona titles.
It is also the third IMSA championship for Balzan, all captured in Ferraris.
Risi Competizione and drivers Giancarlo Fisichella, Alessandro Pier Guidi and Toni Vilander battled back from setbacks of their own to finish in third place in the GT-LeMans class. After Vilander qualified on pole position, the Ferrari fell to the back of the GT-LeMans class on two occasions but battled back to contend for the class victory.
Risi Competizione is one of few teams that took part in the first edition of Petit Le Mans, winning the race overall with a Ferrari 333SP. Risi Competizione finished the season with five podiums, including three in a row to finish the season.