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Weekly Racing Roundup (7.29.19)

Race reports from the weekend’s Total 24 Hours of Spa support races, plus news…

Photo: Lamborghini

Kroes/Afansiev Win at Spa for Bolster Points Lead  

Danny Kroes and Sergei Afansiev claimed victory in race 2 at Spa to further their Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe points lead.

The Bonaldi Motorsport pair clinched their third win in four races after Stuart Middleton and Jack Bartholomew beat them in the weekend’s opening race.

In race 2, Kroes overtook Bartholomew around the outside at Les Combes to take third position with seven minutes to go, before hunting down leader Davide Venditti.

The 19-year-old then performed the same maneuver on Venditti two laps later to take the lead and establish a 13-point gap over Vito Postiglione and Kikko Galbiati, who finished third.

Postiglione secured a podium finish with a late lunge on Bartholomew, denying the second Bonaldi crew of consecutive top-three placings.

In the first race, Micanek Motorsport’s No. 66 Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo took the lead in the driver swaps but came under pressure from Middleton in the closing stages.

Middleton, who had already passed Bartosz Paziewski for at Eau Rouge and Afanasiev on the Kemmel Straight, reeled in Micanek’s Jakub Knoll and out-braked into Les Combes for the lead and the win.

Postiglione and Galbiati’s pole-sitting car retired after a first-lap accident, meanwhile.

Photo: Jules Benichou/SRO

Guilvert/Michal Stage Comeback for French GT4 Win

Gregory Guilvert and Fabien Michal moved to the top of the FFSA French GT4 Championship points with victory in last weekend’s second race at Spa.

The French pair, driving the No. 42 Sainteloc Racing Audi R8 LMS GT4, beat the l’Espace Bienvenue BMW M4 GT4 of Ricardo van der Ende and Christopher Campbell in a close finish.

Guilvert charged through from last on the 38-car grid to help his co-driver Michal emerge from the mid-race driver swaps in third place.

Michal then quickly dispatched the IMSA Performance Audi of Michael Blanchemain and race leader Jean-Pierre Beaubelique in the No. 87 AKKA-ASP Mercedes to take the win.

Van der Ende ultimately made it up to second, while solo driver Matt George, driving an invitational Aston Martin Vantage GT4, also passed both Blanchemain and Beaubelique to complete the podium.

Stephane Lemaret and Pierre-Alexandre Jean retired from race 2 but picked up a victory in the opening race of the weekend with their Alpine A110 GT4.

Lemaret started from pole and maintained his advantage through to the mandatory pit stops while the rest of the top-10 order shuffled behind him.

Rudy Servol’s heavy accident at Raidillon triggered a safety car which led into the driver changes and set up a 15-minute dash to the flag led by Alexandre-Jean.

The Alpine driver successfully held off Benoit Lison’s Mirage Racing Alpine by two seconds, while George came through in third to complete a brace of podium finishes.

RESULTS: Race 1 // Race 2

News & Notes

***Five races from the current IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season have been selected as part of USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice for North America’s Best Motorsports Race. 

***The Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring placed first, while the Rolex 24 at Daytona, Motul Petit Le Mans and rounds at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca and Long Beach also appeared on the list. Nominees are chosen by a panel of relevant experts, including editors from USA Today, editors from and other contributors.

***The annual Silverstone Classic played host to a varied entry of vintage sports cars, including the UK racing debut of the Bentley Speed 8. Both of the weekend’s Masters Endurance Legends race was won by Mike Cantillon and Jonathan Kennard in a Pescarolo-Judd LMP1.

***Markus Winkelhock is set to drive a special Phoenix Racing-entered ‘steer by wire’ Audi R8 LMS GT3 in the next round of the DMV GTC series at Oschersleben next month. The car uses digital technology without a mechanical connection between the steering unit and the transmission.

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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