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Racing Roundup

Weekly Racing Roundup (9.24.18)

Reports from several GT, prototype and touring car races over the weekend…

Photo: Jakob Ebrey Photography

Adam, Haigh Win British GT Title at Donington Park

Jonny Adam and Flick Haigh claimed the British GT Championship GT3 title at Donington Park on Sunday with Adam winning for a record third time and Haigh becoming the series’ first female GT3 champion.

The Optimum Motorsport drivers finished fourth on track in their No. 75 Aston Martin Vantage GT3 while championship rivals Phil Keen and Jon Minshaw won the race for Barwell Motorsport.

TF Sport’s Nicki Thiim and Mark Farmer had crossed the line first but they were given a 30-second post-race time penalty, promoting the No. 33 Barwell Lamborghini Huracan GT3 to the top spot.

Adam and Haigh won just twice this season, at Oulton Park and Brands Hatch, but came to the two-hour finale at Donington in the points lead.

It marks Aston Martin Racing factory driver Adam’s third title after similar successes in 2015 and 2016 with Beechdean AMR and TF Sport, respectively.

Jack Mitchell took the GT4 title in his Century Motorsport BMW M4 GT4 while Finlay Hutchison and Dan Mckay claimed their maiden class win in the Equipe Verschuur McLaren 570S GT4.

Mitchell’s success gives BMW its first title in the series since Marco Attard won the premier class in 2014 with a Z4 GT3.

RESULTS: Donington Park

Photo: Audi

Rast Keeps DTM Title Hopes Alive with Fourth Straight Win

Rene Rast scored his fourth consecutive DTM win with a pair of victories at the Red Bull Ring on Saturday and Sunday, keeping him in the championship fight.

The Audi Sport Team Rosberg driver became the first driver to win four DTM races in a row since 1996 with his wins in Austria coming after a sweep at the Nürburgring two weeks ago.

He heads to the finale at the Hockenheimring in the title hunt along with Gary Paffett and Paul Di Resta with 30 points separating the three drivers.

Rast benefitted from a controversial penalty handed to leader Daniel Juncadella in Race 1, with the Spaniard gaining a drive-through penalty for an infringement during a restart with three laps remaining.

He was unable to come in to serve the penalty with little time left before the end of the race, so it was converted to a 30-second time penalty which moved him down to 14th.

While the drivers’ championship fight remains alive for the October finale, Mercedes-AMG secured the manufacturers’ title in Austria.

The Stuttgart-based brand, which is leaving the championship at the end of the season, has a total of 865 points while closest rival BMW is out of reach on 563.

RESULTS: Red Bull Ring

Photo: VLN

Black Falcon Achieves Second VLN Win of Season in Close Fuel Run

Hubert Haupt, Maro Engel and Manuel Metzger gave Black Falcon its second VLN win of the season in the seventh race at the Nürburgring Nordschleife on Saturday.

Their No. 6 Mercedes-AMG GT3 completed 28 laps in the four-hour race, crossing the line 14.7 seconds clear of the Frikadelli Racing Team Porsche 911 GT3 R of Norbert Siedler and Lance David Arnold.

Black Falcon decided to come in for its first stop early, after four laps, before scheduling three further eight-lap stints.

Haupt explained post-race that: “A Code 60 phase in the last two laps saved our victory,” with the team carrying only eight laps of fuel in the final stint but calculating nine laps left to run.

The Code 60 late in the race reduced the final stint to eight laps, with Haupt crossing the finish line just one second after the race time had elapsed.

Falken Motorsports completed the podium with its BMW M6 GT3 of Peter Dumbreck and Stef Dusseldorp, meanwhile.


Photo: SRO

Kodric, Lind Take Blancpain GT Series Asia Points Lead

Martin Kodric and Dennis Lind won the second Blancpain GT Series Asia race at Shanghai to move into the championship lead ahead of the finale weekend.

They led home a 1-2 finish for FFF Racing Team in Sunday’s race with their Lamborghini Huracan GT3 after Nick Foster and Jono Lester won the opening race for HubAuto Corsa to give Ferrari its first win of the season.

GruppeM Racing Team’s Alexander Mattschull spun out of the lead on the penultimate lap of Race 2 while under intense pressure from the pair of FFF Lamborghinis, Lind into the lead.

Mattschull recovered to finish third alongside co-driver Raffaele Marciello.

Kodric and Lind head to the finale at Ningbo with 135 points while Patric Niederhauser has 123 and Foster 115.

BMW Team Studie drivers Sunako Jukuchou and Takayuki Kinoshita won in GT4 for the fourth time this season on Sunday after Reinhold Renger and Rick Yoon picked up the Race 1 win.

Renger has an 11-point lead at the head of the GT4 standings ahead of Jukuchou and Kinoshita.

RESULTS: Race 1; Race 2

Photo: International GT Open

Mac Leads GT Open Standings as Luzich, Teo Martin Take Wins

Mikkel Mac recovered the lead of the International GT Open standings with a win in Race 2 at Monza alongside Alessandro Pier Guidi. 

The Luzich Racing drivers had a perfect race on Sunday to give Mac a three-point advantage over Fran Rueda and Andres Saravia who finished second after winning on Saturday.

The Teo Martin drivers initially closed the gap with their success in Race 1, heading into the weekend’s second race tied on points and wins with Mac. 

It opens up a three-way battle for the title at Barcelona next month between Mac, Rueda/Saravia and Imperiale Racing’s Giovanni Venturini and Jeroen Mul.

The Imperiale drivers finished third on Sunday after a retirement in Race 1, and so head to the Spanish round 25 points back. 

Daniele Di Amato and Andrea Montermini finished second in the opening race for RS Racing, while Imperiale Racing was third with its other car driven by Rik Breukers and Riccardo Agostini.

RESULTS: Race 1; Race 2

Photo: MPS Agency

DKR, Kessel Secure Le Mans Cup Titles at Spa

DKR Engineering and Kessel Racing wrapped up the Michelin Le Mans Cup LMP3 and GT3 titles in the penultimate round of the season at Spa-Francorchamps on Saturday.

Jens Petersen and Leonard Hoogenboom finished third on track with their No. 3 DKR-run Norma M30 Nissan to wrap up the title after winning three of the season’s six races so far.

Ecurie Ecosse/Nielsen picked up its first series win with a 1-2 finish led by Colin Noble and Alasdair McCaig while its other Ligier JS P3 Nissan was 14 seconds back, driven by Anthony Wells and James Littlejohn.

Giacomo Piccini won in GT3 to secure the fourth win of the season for him and Kessel teammate Sergio Pianezzola.

Kessel locked out the podium with Matteo Cressoni finishing second and Maurizio Mediani third for the Swiss team.


News & Notes

***Nicolas Minassian made a return to racing this weekend as a last-minute substitute in the European Le Mans Series. The Frenchman, who is sporting director at IDEC Sport Racing, joined Erik Maris and Aurelien Panis in one of the team’s Ligier JS P217 Gibsons when Paul and Patrice Lafargue were absent with Paul in hospital for surgery.

***Falken Motorsports completed its debut race with the new 2019-spec Porsche 911 GT3 R in VLN on Saturday. Nick Tandy, Laurens Vanthoor and Martin Ragginger drove the car in the SPX class for unhomologated cars. Click here to view a picture of the car on track.

***BMW has announced that its M235i Racing Cup class will become the BMW M240i Racing Cup next season, with the cars homologated for a further two years in the VLN with an Evo package.

Jake Kilshaw is a UK-based journalist. He is a graduate of Politics and International Relations.

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