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Mies, Riberas Extend Points Lead with Misano Sweep

Christopher Mies and Alex Riberas extend Blancpain GT points lead with Misano sweep…

Photo: Dirk Bogaerts/SRO

Christopher Mies and Alex Riberas have extended their lead in the Blancpain GT Series championship standings after winning both Sprint Cup races at Misano.

The Belgian Audi Club Team WRT drivers took their No. 1 Audi R8 LMS GT3 to their second win of the weekend on Sunday afternoon after narrowly winning the other race on Saturday evening.

Riberas led a WRT 1-2 across the line after other front-running cars had problems during the course of the 60-minute sprint race.

They leave Misano in the lead of both the Blancpain GT overall and Blancpain GT Sprint Cup titles, adding to their Endurance Cup win at Monza alongside Dries Vanthoor.

Mies started the race from third but made his way past Franck Perera on the opening lap to inherit second position ahead of the Grasser Racing Team driver.

The German ran in second for most of the opening stint with Raffaele Marciello extending a commanding lead over the field in his AKKA ASP-run Mercedes-AMG GT3.

Pole-sitter Marciello’s race unravelled when he picked up heavy front-left damage after hitting the curb too hard shortly before the pit window opened.

This allowed Mies to overtake for the lead on-track while Marciello’s co-driver Michael Meadows had dropped out of the lead battle when he came out of the pit lane and ultimately had to settle for tenth.

Riberas held on to a ten-second lead across the line while Dries Vanthoor and Will Stevens finished second in the sister No. 2 WRT Audi. 

Simon Gachet and Kelvin van der Linde made it an Audi lockout of the top four positions in their Sainteloc Racing and Attempto Racing-run entries which finished third and fourth.

Nicolas Jamin bounced back to finish fifth and secure the Silver Cup class win with co-driver Denis Bulatov in his AKKA ASP Mercedes after retiring from the lead early in Race 1.

Sainteloc claimed the Pro-Am honors from ninth overall with its No. 26 Audi driven by Markus Winkelhock and Nyls Stievenart.

The three Grasser Lamborghini Huracan GT3s looked set for a strong result in the Italian manufacturer’s home Sprint Cup race but all three cars picked up punctures during this afternoon’s race.

Reigning overall champion Mirko Bortolotti dropped back from fourth position during the opening stint when he picked up a left-rear puncture, dropping he and co-driver Christian Engelhart to 18th at the line.


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

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