The TC2000 said goodbye to the 2022 season in Concepción del Uruguay, with an exercise already resolved in favor of Leonel Pernia, which was consecrated on the previous date. And in the absence of attractions for this date, a definition hot and controversial He revived the farewell of the category.
Julián Santero was finally the winner of the last round of the year on the Entre Ríos track, after a heated discussion with Agustín Canapino, with whom he had a confrontation in the 200 Kilometers TC2000 in Buenos Aires.
With a definition already resolved, the eyes were on Chevrolet and Agustín Canapino, who are back, like Berni Llaver, after the team’s absence in Córdoba due to the internal union conflict of the Pro Racing team. After that particular situation, Canapino’s announcement of his farewell to the category for 2023 and, just a few days ago, the return of the Chevrolet team to close the current season.
Despite the contest definition, the last race of the year was exciting. Every sporting event must have the uncertainty of the outcome, and boy did this test have that great value. The rain, protagonist of the appointment, appeared at the right moment, when it seemed that everything was taken for granted.
Pernía (Renault), Julián Santero (Toyota) and Agustín Canapino (Chevrolet) were battling for the lead, in a changing race. Until the water came to dominate the scene and with the cash for the tire change, it was a shuffling and giving.
In the midst of so much uncertainty, three riders remained on the track with slick tyres: Fabián Yannantuoni, Emiliano Spataro and Facundo Aldrighetti.
Of the three, the only one left on the track under the new conditions was Aldrighetti, who was in front and leading when the safety car came on.
But towards the end it all happened. Aldrighetti didn’t resist in those conditions and dropped to fourth place. But the controversy erupted in that final lap, amidst the friction between Canapino and Santero.
As an extension of the great controversy generated in the Buenos Aires 200km, where both also met on the track, there was friction here. Santero on the outside, with a better performance, and Canapino who defends himself on the inside at every corner, using physics to go out and leave the Toyota rival without traction.
Finally, Canapino crossed the line of judgment first, although the dispute continued on the podium, where both drivers exchanged views with a grim face, and later in the caravan of the Argentine Automobile Club’s Automobile Sports Commission (CDA) (ACA).
Finally, the sports authorities sanctioned Canapino with one more position, thus Santero was the winner of the last race of the TC2000 season.
“We delayed with the tire change. But we had a great rhythm, Canapino never respected me. It may be once, but for me to kick out four times is already a betrayal. You can tell they have a personal problem with me, from the last race in Gálvez. It was a very crazy race. We got confused, there was a tire change and a great definition”, commented Santero.
Meanwhile Canapino had expressed his opinion: “It was a race. Very happy with how it all turned out. I couldn’t have taken another round. The team did a great job with the tire change. In the last lap he insisted on me by jumping inside. We touched a bit, worthy of a great definition. It’s a dream farewell to the team and the category.”
Beyond the victory, the applause went to Facundo Aldrighetti, who appeared unexpectedly at the end. When everyone changed tires due to the new wet track conditions, he stayed on slick tyres. He did everything he could since he was ahead in the raise.
Finally the deluge arrived at the end, and the inevitable oversight after a great job by the driver with Fiat, who had started from 14th position and finished fourth. “This experience has been incredible, fighting with Canapino, Santero and Pernía. In the dry part I was faster, but in the end with the wet my car went over the corner”, commented Aldrighetti.
Beyond the race, Leonel Pernía was moved on the podium, where he celebrated the title obtained early, but also for the coronation of his son Tiago (see aside), in the National Formula.
“An incredible weekend, a dream. My champion son, let’s celebrate the title and with this race. At this age it is the happiest day of my sporting life,” commented the monarch.
Thus ended a hectic season for TC2000. In the pursuit of making the transformation, with the arrival of SUVs as new models, the category has closed its year and looks ahead to the new horizons, which will crystallize from February.
Another Pernía, champion of the National Formula
Tiago Pernía, son of Leonel, became champion of the National Formula, finishing in fourth place in the last round, held in Concepción del Uruguay.
Pernía had a 23-point lead over Emiliano Stang, who had to win the competition and hope his rival didn’t finish in the top 15. In the end, Stang prevailed, escorted by Brian Massa and Tomás Pozner.
At the celebration, Tiago embraced his parents, Leonel, the newest TC2000 champion, and Denise, as well as his uncle, Mariano Pernía, a former soccer player (he was a member of the Spanish soccer team and currently a driver in some categories). During the year he was also accompanied in various races by his grandfather, Vicente Pernía, a former footballer and driver.
“I didn’t have to get into friction, that’s why I went out to take care of myself. We have done a great job all year with the team. Happiness is double because of my father’s title, which was unthinkable at the beginning of the year,” commented Pernía, a foreign pilot, having been born in Dallas, USA, at Parkland Hospital, where John Fitzgerald Kennedy died.
Marques, champion of the TC2000 series. Facundo Marques, with Axion Energy Sport’s Fluence, finished ninth in the final in Concepción del Uruguay and took the crown in the TC2000 series.
The race was won by Mateo Polakovich, escorted by Lucas Bohdanowicz and Matías Capurro.
“It is the most important moment of my life. Having the chance to become champion with a great team that trusted me for three years. I am very grateful” confessed Marques.
As soon as he got out of the car, the driver from Río Cuarto received confirmation of his sporting continuity in the TC2000, within the Ambrogio Racing team, since his owner, Marcelo Ambrogio, confirmed the news to him before celebrating his coronation on the podium.