Christian Merli receives FIA prize in Spain
At the prize-giving ceremony of the international automobile federation (FIA) in northern Spain, Christian Merli was awarded his fourth European Hill Climb Championship title. In a triumphant season with his Osella FA 30 Judd LRM he won all nine events this year.
“When they played the Italian national anthem, it was a very exciting moment. The whole season passes in front of your eyes. It’s a great achievement, a reward for our efforts this year. The ceremony took place in Arriondas in northern Spain, where we normally race in the Subida al Fito. It was a splendid, memorable evening. We were also informed about the regulations for next year. For safety reasons, the maximum engine speed will be reduced from 11000 to 9500 rpm, and there will be an extra ballast of 30 kg. We are looking at losing about 30 hp.”
The 2022 season
In what was a fantastic season for him, the champion from Trentino took the start at 17 hill climb races this year. He grabbed victory at 16 of them and established four new records. As said before, he conquered the top step of the podium in all nine rounds of the European championship. Then there were the events where he was invited, never once disappointing the fans or the organisers.
Between commitments Merli did not hesitate to accept a request for a photo shoot with children from the ADGT, the Trentino association for juvenile diabetes.
“I must say it was very moving. It touches your heart. A praiseworthy initiative. The photos will be used for a calendar involving sportspeople from Trentino; it will be available in return for a donation. Of course the spotlight is on the children and their families. We’re just extras.”
Translation by Ruth Scheithauer