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HRT Mercedes Fastest in Rain-Affected N24 Warm-Up

Manuel Metzger on top for HRT as rain sets in during session before N24 race start…

Photo: Gruppe C Photography

Manuel Metzger led a wet warm-up session for the Nürburgring 24 with a time of 9:47.316 in the pole-sitting No. 4 Haupt Racing Team Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo.

The morning after Maro Engel put the HRT car at the front of the grid, his co-driver Metzger topped the leaderboards in a 60-minute practice run before this afternoon’s race start.

Metzger and Engel are sharing the wheel with Luca Stolz and Adam Christodoulou.

Mercedes-AMG entries occupied the top two as Raffaele Marciello jumped to second in the order right at the end of the session in the No. 9 GetSpeed Performance machine, cutting Metzger’s lead over the next-best car down from six seconds to half a second.

This lap from the Italian dropped the trio of Porsche 911 GT3 Rs driven by Maxime Martin, Klaus Bachler and Earl Bamber to third, fourth and fifth in the final rankings.

Martin, driving the No. 31 Frikadelli Racing Team Porsche that starts from row nine on the grid, generated a time of 9:53.419 during his stint after taking over from Lars Kern.

Sixth-quickest was the No. 6 HRT Mercedes-AMG, while the No. 98 ROWE Racing BMW M6 GT3 was seventh and the No. 19 KCMG Porsche eighth.

The warm-up ran without any significant mishaps incident despite the challenging conditions.

Pre-Race BoP Adjustment for Ferraris

An update to the SP9 Balance of Performance was issued after Top Qualifying, confirming fuel capacity tweaks for the two versions of the Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo that are taking part.

The 2020 iteration of the 488 GT3 Evo being run by Octane 126, which is starting from second on the grid, has had its maximum fuel amount raised from 112 liters to 115 liters.

Ferrari’s earlier 2018 Evo generation being run by the Racing One squad has also had an increase in its fuel amount, from 114 liters to 117 liters.

It marks the third BoP change this week, after initial tweaks to some cars’ maximum power outputs were made on Wednesday, giving the Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evos two extra horsepower and taking away a single unit from the Ferraris.

This was followed on Friday morning by a 10 kg weight break for the Porsche 911 GT3 Rs.

Additionally, the starting grid has been published with a smaller-than-usual set of two 47-car groups poised to take the green light at 3:30 p.m. CEST (9:30 a.m. EST).

A handful of others, including the No. 7 Car Collection Motorsport Audi which received a penalty during qualifying practice, are expected to start from the pits.

The starting list also confirms that the No. 73 Walkenhorst Motorsport BMW M4 GT4, which is supported by the BMW Junior Team, will be the highest GT4 car on the grid.

A total of 10 GT4 cars will be in the first starting group, along with a handful of Porsche Cup cars.

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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