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Nürburgring Endurance

HTP Mercedes Retains Pole for N24 Qualifying Race

Maximilian Götz puts HTP Motorsport Mercedes on pole…

Photo: Brecht Decancq Photography

Photo: Brecht Decancq Photography

HTP Motorsport will start from the pole for the first ever Nürburgring 6 Hours Qualifying Race for the 24 Hours.

It was Maximilian Götz’s time of 8:20.835 in the HTP Motorsport Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG came early during Saturday’s first qualifying session.

There was a good tussle for second place that was eventually won by Pierre Kaffer in the factory backed Audi R8 LMS ultra.

In addition to Kaffer and racing professionals Frank Biela and Marco Werner, the roster of car No. 502 includes skydiver Felix Baumgartner.

The top three spots remained unchanged from Saturday’s session.

The biggest change came from the No. 17 G-Drive Racing Audi which vaulted from 12th to fourth with a 8:26.241.

The No. 9 Abt Audi, No. 1 Black Falcon Mercedes (gearbox now repaired), and No. 24 Schulze Motorsport Nissan, all improved their times slightly, but actually dropped down thanks to the good lap by No. 17.

One other car joined the top ten, the No. 18 Audi Race Experience R8 LMS ultra setting a 8:30.40. It moved them from 14th to 9th on the grid.

They are just ahead of the two Team Schubert BMW Z4s, which set identical times down to the thousandths at 8:31.192—quite an accomplishment across a 24.358 kilometer lap.

One of the cars to already crash out on Saturday was the Falken Tires Porsche 997 GT3 R, which went off at the end of the very high speed Dottinger Hohe straight in the hands of Peter Dumbreck.

Dumbreck was shaken a bit but largely unhurt, although of course taken to the hospital as a precautionary measure. The accident happened during free practice for the companion RCN series.

János Wimpffen is an American motorsport historian and journalist, contributing to Sportscar365's international coverage. He is the author of "Time and Two Seats" and numerous other award-winning books documenting the history of sports car racing.

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