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22.10.2019 - Mikko Eskelinen & Jake Rattenbury 3rd fastest in Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe - Heavy crash in Jerez ruled Eskelinen out from World Finals

Since season 2014 Flying Finn Mikko Eskelinen has been competing in Lamborghini Super Trofeo series and in season 2019 edition, once again, he collect a medal position as now in season finale, which was driven in Spanish circuit of Jerez, Mikko and his fellow british team mate Jake Rattenbury collect bronze medals from the European Championship series.

Exactly a year ago Eskelinen celebrated his first-ever Asian Championship title with fellow Finn Juuso Puhakka, who was 2nd fastest in Asian Championship series this year. Even both Finns drove like a lion, they were forced to have a dissapointing end as Puhakka, together with his japanise team mate Takashi Kasai, lost the Championship title just by 0,247 seconds and Eskelinen suffered a brake failure and encountered a heavy crash in final lap of the penultimate race of the season. However, despite a miserable retirement, Mikko and Jake collect a bronze podium because their rivals were lapped before chequerred flag was waved.

Previously Eskelinen had driven in Jerez at season 2012 when he collect the title of Spanish GT Champion. Now he entered season 2019 finale with hopes of collecting silver medal in European series and leaving the circuit as World Finals Champion. However his weekend came to a sudden end as in the crash the car was so badly damaged that Leipert Motorsport mechanics were unable to repair the car for the World Finals. Therefore Eskelinen and Rattenbury were forced to accept bronze medals in AM-group of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo European Championship series.

- During my 12 years of motorsport career this was the most bizarre thing I have encountered as right immediately after crashing out from the circuit due brake failure I was given an ambulance ride to paddock and then few minutes later I celebrated on podium and poured Champagne, Eskelinen tells.

- On final lap I was on attack mode with a speed of approximately 220km/h. Then next thing I remember was that I realized I had no brakes and I will hit the wall. The impact was so hard that I found the mirror on my lap. It was pretty unreal feeling that about 15 minutes later I was celebrating podium position even I didn't finish the event, Eskelinen continues.

Even the medal from Lamborghini Super Trofeo series was 3rd in-a-row for Eskelinen and 5th overall, he still was a bit dissapointment as he and Jake Rattenbury were unable to drive for the European Championship title in final round. Flying Finn was also forced to skip World Finals due injury he suffered in crash. German Leipert Motorsport had prepared a spare car for the race but in morning warm up Eskelinen discovered for not being able to drive with maximum performance.

- My racing season 2019 was ended into a big dissapointment as the car hit the barrier so hard that the impact had bend the chassis of the car. In that impact I also hurt myself and therefore I wasn't able to drive in World Finals, Eskelinen tells.

- Because we were unable to reach our goals which were set for the Championship title, it only means that I have to try again in next year. I really love to compete in internation GT-series and also help young Fellow Finns to go forward in their career. A year ago I and very talented Juuso Puhakka collect the title of Lamborghini Super Trofeo Asia PRO-AM Champions and now as Juuso is on his way towards GT3 Championship series I'm ready to help other Finns as in forthcoming weeks my GTM Motorsport and Leipert Motorsport will organize a Shoot Out event in Circuit of Barcelona. Two Finns, Luka Nurmi and Elias Niskanen will be able to show their talent and make plans for next seasons, Eskelinen continues.

In Lamborghini Super Trofeo World Finals the PRO-title was won by danish Frederik Schandorff and Jonathan Cecotto. AM-group was won by Steven Aghahkani, age of 16. Jake Rattenbury collect bronze medals from World Finals.

Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe 2019 standings 12/12 rounds, AM-group, top-5:
1. Nicolas Gomar (FRA), 156 points
2. Robert Zwinger (SLK), 113 points
3. Mikko Eskelinen (FIN) & Jake Rattenbury (GBR), 101 points
4. Gilles Vannelet (FRA), 80 points
5. Raffaele Giannoni (ITA), 69 points


Pictures from the event: (All images @ Jani Kekoni / Mediaguru.fi & Fotospeedy.it)

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Mikko Eskelisen kotisivut on suunnitellut ja toteuttanut MediaGuru Jack Bacon - Digitaalisen median tuotantostudio - www.mediaguru.fi