The Maserati Trophy has found its leader. With his fourth consecutive win, on the very demanding circuit of Silverstone on Sunday, the Italian driver Emanuele Smurra took a giant stride towards the title. With a 49 point lead over his nearest rival he can mathematically win the title at Monza on September 14, during the same weekend as the Italian Formula 1 Grand Prix.

Cloudy skies and mild temperatures (16°C and 22°C track) welcomed the drivers at the start of the race.

At the green light, Ivan Capelli, the former Ferrari F1 driver, who has also driven the Maserati VIP Car, attacked Alessi, the polesitter from Saturday's qualifying session, and overtook him thanks to a great move at the Copse curve.

Emanuele Smurra took the lead after the obligatory pit stops and controlled the situation thereafter until the chequered flag, having let Ivan Capelli and Diego Alessi expresses themselves early on. Smurra was very satisfied with his Maserati and the efficiency of his Pirelli P Zero racing tyres.

With this win, Smurra adds to his points total, also benefiting from the no-score of Cerrai and Tirella's fourth place. Tirella is the only driver able to catch Smurra, looking increasingly like the main player in the championship.

Jean Todt, General Manager of Ferrari-Maserati Motorsport and Rubens Barrichello were present on the podium to award the Maserati Trophy prizes.

Silverstone podium:
1. Emanuele Smurra, Italy, 41:03.730
2. Mountain/Wilson UK/UK + 13.411
3. Sergio Rota, Italy + 14.738

Next race: Monza Grand Prix (Italy) - September 14, 2003

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Original article from Car