Christian Merli wins the 19th Subida Arona at Tenerife
Christian Merli, 2022 European champion, conquers the top step of the podium at the 19th edition of the Subida Arona – La Escalona in the south of Tenerife, Canary Islands. After his win at the Tamaimo hill climb he has stayed on the island as a guest to compete in the Arona event in the new Osella, powered by a Peugeot-derived, turbocharged 1170 engine which produces 400 hp.
“Definitely unexpected. Towards the end of the first race heat the engine went out, and we passed the finish line in neutral. And to think that my split time had been excellent. I didn’t want to take any risks and so I didn’t do the second run. The day’s programme included one practice run in the morning and two race runs in the afternoon, with the better time being retained. Unfortunately my direct opponent, Eduardo Lauren Garcia Estevez, who was racing with the 3 litre Nova 01, had to withdraw due to engine issues. The win we’re taking home is a bit surreal, but that’s what racing is like. The car is doing a good job, but the engine still needs some work.”
The day of the race
As mentioned before, the day starts with the single practice run on the 4.400 km track, where Eduardo Lauren Garcia Estevez with the 3 litre Nova 01 clocks the fastest time, while Merli with the new Osella Turbo is behind him, slowed down by a transmission issue. Fortunately just a sensor. The first race run follows immediately, under a cloudy sky. Christian is first but passes the chequered flag in neutral due to engine problems, while his direct opponent is forced to withdraw with a broken engine. So Merli wins also the second event on the Canary Islands.
Translation by Ruth Scheithauer