Last weekend, in Patras, Greece, the beautiful Montelodromio track was the home of the 2nd round of the 200mm Greek National Series that also doubled as the Greek National Cup race for 2017.
Newly recruited to team BMT, former National Champion, Nikos Karabelas, has claimed a debut victory for Team BMT’s new 701 on its first outing!
All BMT 701 cars showed great pace from Saturday open practice and made their intentions clear early on, as the current track lap record was already smashed on Saturday evening by Karabelas.
Come Sunday, the race, proved very challenging. Although the first Qualifying round was very good the next 3 rounds were rough for Nikos and the team, showing the lack of track time with the new car.
Although not satisfied, all BMT drivers qualified into the A final.
As soon as the 35 minute final started, the top qualifiers made some mistakes early on, that let Bill Lykaris and Nikos Karabelas to battle for the lead. After a nerve shattering 15 minute battle, bumper to bumper, Nikos had retained the lead and kept his pace fast and steady while others made errors and fell back.
All the team was working perfectly, with lightning fast flawless pitstops from young apprentice Charalambos Kyritsis and Veteran racer Nicolas Floudas who had traveled along to help in setup the new car for Nikos and his team.
In the later stages of the final, after the last 2 pistops, Nikos had already built a huge 3 lap lead so that meant he had to “just bring the car home”! Of course that was not an easy task, with so many incidents in the technical track, but Nikos kept his usual cool and crossed the finish line first!
Labros Tsiklitiras had the potential and pace to finish on the podium, but a collision from another car, causing a body tuck that cost him precious seconds and finally had to settle for fifth place.
Nikolaos Nikiforos, Greek BMT distributor, had to settle with seventh position, being busy supporting the Greek BMT Drivers leaving him no time to prepare his car for the main event.
After the dust had settle, the Greek BMT team went home with three trophies!
National Cup Champion
200mm Nationals 2nd round winner
Fastest single lap record
1. Nikos Karabelas (BMT)
2. Bill Lykaris
3. Dimitris Papadopoulos
4. Dimitris Dimitriou
5. Labros Tsiklitiras (BMT)
6. Dimitris Bastas
7. Nikolaos Nikiforos (BMT)
8. Spiros Sotiropoulos
9. Vaggelis Totomis
10. Takis Papadopoulos