Laurens and Dries Vanthoor both hold regrets over the Tiergarten incident that saw the former spin and crash out of the Nürburgring 24, but say they hold “no hard feelings” against each other.
The two brothers came to blows after a lengthy battle for position between Laurens in the Manthey Porsche 911 GT3 R and Dries in the No. 15 Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo II.
After a small touch, Vanthoor’s Porsche spun and made heavy contact with the right-hand side barrier, rebounding across the track into the tires and bringing Manthey’s N24 defense to an early end after three and a half hours.
The Porsche driver later commented on the incident on social media, explaining that the battle with his younger brother led him to take greater risks.
“I’ll probably never be ready to put this into words,” Vanthoor wrote on Instagram.
“What happened yesterday was a nightmare. I know I’m smarter, I know you don’t take that amount of risk in a 24-hour race.
“It’s painful to be this open in public but the reason behind is that I was racing my brother.
“My emotions took over and my brain stopped working. We’ve been competing against each other since we were kids, never backing off and rather breaking a leg than losing to each other.
“Unfortunately this competitiveness took the upper hand yesterday. I regret it badly, it was unprofessional.”
The 31-year-old stated that there was no ill will between him and his brother.
“I have absolutely no hard feelings towards Dries, on the contrary, I’m a very proud brother,” he stated.
“In the future we will have each others backs instead of fighting each other.
“Today was a black day in my career. I will regret it for a very long time but that’s how life works.”
Dries Vanthoor, who after the incident would go on to win the race, expressed a similar sentiment.
“If you look at it, maybe it was not the smartest thing from both of us to take that much risk in the first few hours,” he told Sportscar365.
“What happened? Everyone has his own thing about it. But no credits to him and also not for myself.”
Vanthoor proceeded to defend his sibling, saying he feels the Porsche factory driver caught unnecessary flack on social media in the aftermath of the crash.
“I don’t think I did anything wrong and I don’t think he did anything wrong,” said Vanthoor. “It was just not smart from us.
“I don’t think he should get blamed for things because sometimes I read social media, which actually is a complete joke.
“I just don’t feel nice about what they write. I think it’s just nice to respect that he always does a great job.
“It doesn’t always go to plan and they should just respect that.”
The 24-year-old went on to explain that he has great respect for his older brother, saying he ‘is racing because of him’, and that they spoke together after the accident.
“We always say that when we’re racing, we go flat out,” Vanthoor said.
“Maybe we should have both helped each other instead of trying to race each other.
“This is something we learned, both of us. For sure in the future, it won’t happen again.”
Daniel Lloyd contributed to this report