Black Falcon still has a comfortable lead as the Hankook 24 Hours of Dubai reached its halfway mark at 2 a.m.
The No. 2 Mercedes SLS AMG GT3, driven by Yelmer Buurman, is more than two laps ahead of the second placed No. 28 KPM Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT3 in the hands of Paul White.
SPS automotive-performance and Dragon Racing are battling for the final step on the podium, although the No. 88 Ferrari is at a disadvantage as a result of the 2:04 reference lap time in A6-Am.
Ram Racing’s No. 30 Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 was fifth at the halfway mark, ahead of the No. 23 Nissan GT Academy Team RJN Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 in sixth overall and second in A6-Am.
There was drama for several teams in the A6 class, with one of the Lamborghinis hitting the No. 4 Scuderia Praha Ferrari of Reiter Engineering driver Peter Kox, while V8 Racing’s No. 19 Corvette C6.R lost time as a result of power steering issues at the end of the seventh hour.
Joe Osborne dropped out of the top-30 when the No. 8 Triple Eight BMW Z4 GT3 suffered a differential failure on the main straight. The car was towed back, the team replaced the differential and sent the fast Briton out again.
The No. 1 Stadler Motorsport Porsche 997 GT3 R, last year’s race winner, was officially retired from the race early into the ninth hour, followed by the retirement of the No. 22 Lamborghini with a broken gearbox 30 minutes later.
There have been four more Code 60 interruptions, all to make a safe recovery of stranded vehicles possible.
Black Falcon still leads the 997 class with its No. 26 Porsche 991 Cup car, while Optimum Motorsport took the SP3-class lead, following problems for the No. 205 Nova Race Ginetta and No. 160 ALFAB Racing Aston Martin.
RESULTS: Hour 12