***2018 marks the return of the Lamborghini World Final to Autodromo Vallelunga Piero Taruffi, which hosted the inaugural running of the event in 2013. It is the first time that the same venue has hosted the event multiple times.
***The unique track, located 20 miles from downtown Rome, was originally built as a sand oval for horse racing in 1959. It has since been paved and undergone multiple extensions and renovations, and over the years it has played host to multiple sports car racing and junior open-wheel series.
***Kunos Simulazioni, the Italian software development studio behind the popular Assetto Corsa driving simulation games, is based at the circuit.
***As confirmed by Lamborghini’s North American motorsports boss Chris Ward on the latest Double Stint Podcast, Italy will play host to the World Final for the third straight year next year. After stops in Imola (2017) and Vallelunga (2018), Monza is widely believed to be the “high profile” Italian circuit that will be announced as the host of next year’s World Final.
***U.S. Racetronics driver Edoardo Piscopo is the only driver of Italian extraction in the Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America series. The native of Rome considers this his home track and will look to impress in front of friends and family this weekend.
***A testing crash for Precision Performance Motorsports driver Shinya Michimi has ruled the No. 146 entry he was due to share with Brandon Gdovic out of the running this weekend. The team believes the accident, which occurred in a high speed section of the track, was caused by a mechanical problem.
***Michimi suffered minor injuries in the accident, but told Sportscar365 he felt fortunate that it wasn’t more significant given the force of the impact. Unable to score points this weekend, Michimi and Gdovic dropped to fourth in the final Pro class standings after entering the weekend tied for second.
***The team’s second car, entered in the Am class for Martin Barkey and Shea Holbrook, lost its qualifying results for Friday’s North America races due to a rear wing infringement and had to start both races from pit lane.
***PPM team manager Sunny Voelker said the intention is to add additional GT3 outings to their schedule next year alongside the existing Super Trofeo program, which could grow in 2019. Voelker said interest in campaigning an updated 2019-spec Huracan GT3 Evo in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship next year is high.
“We’d really like to run the Sprint championship,” she told Sportscar365. “There’s a lot of interest in the endurance races, too. Daytona is tight, but doable. We don’t have anything to announce yet, but that’s what we’re shooting for.”
***In addition to the drivers’ and teams’ championships, the North American dealers’ championship was decided on Friday with Lamborghini of Charlotte edging Lamborghini of Beverly Hills for the crown.
***World Final Race 1 and Race 2 pole-sitters Giacomo Altoe and David Zampieri won Race 1 of the European series from pole on Friday for Antonelli Motorsport, while the Pro Am entry of Shota Abhazava and Sergej Afanasiev won overall in Race 2 for Artline Team Georgia.
***The win, coupled with an eighth place overall finish in Race 2 and misfortune for the Imperiale Racing team that entered the weekend leading the standings. Manuel Lauck and Florian Scholze picked up the European Am title for Doerr Motorsport, while JC Perez and Loris Spinelli added the European Pro Am title to the North American title they had already clinched. Gerard Van der Horst, meanwhile earned his third straight LB Cup championship.
***The Asian championship went to Andrewa Amici and Artur Janosz. The duo’s third-place result in Race 1, after starting from the back due to an off in qualifying, was enough to secure the title without having to turn a lap in Race 2. Finns Miko Eskelinen and Juuso Puhakka won the Asian Pro Am title by a mere two points, while Suttiluck Buncharoen and Paul Wong were crowned champions in Am and LB Cup, respectively.
***Find the complete spotter guide for the event, complete with liveries for all 65 cars entered, courtesy of Andy Blackmore here.
***The first World Final races of the weekend start with the Am and Cup cars at 1:20 p.m. local time Saturday, followed by the Pro and Pro-Am race at 3:30 p.m. Live streaming coverage is available here and at the Lamborghini Squadra Corse Facebook page.