Connect with us

GT World Challenge Europe

Stolz Storms to Nürburgring Blancpain GT Pole

Stolz puts GRT Lamborghini on pole as title favorites struggle…

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Luca Stolz put the No. 19 Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini Huracán GT3 on pole for Sunday’s Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup finale at Nürburgring, as several of the title contenders struggled in the difficult conditions.

Both Q1 and Q2 were cancelled due to the typical Nürburgring morning fog, which made for poor visibility and prohibited the medical helicopter from taking off.

The remaining Q3 session finally got underway 80 minutes after the scheduled start, although it was red flagged after only three minutes when Andy Soucek beached the No. 8 M-Sport Bentley Continental GT3 at turn one.

While the fog finally cleared, a slightly damp track still posed a big challenge for the 54-car field, resulting in several off track excursions as most cars opted for slicks.

The times continued to tumble as the session progressed and eventually it was Stolz’s No. 19 GRT Lamborghini that was on top when Olivier Beretta caused another red flag.

With only one minute left on the clock, it forced most of the field to abort their ultimate fast lap. The session was not restarted.

Stolz reeled off a lap time of 1:57.379, beating Christopher Mies in the No. 28 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi R8 LMS by 0.256s and Alessandro Pier Guidi in the No. 50 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GT3 in third.

“The car was already great yesterday. The track suits the Lamborghini, we also saw this last year with Bortolotti taking the pole,” said Stolz.

“You have to stay calm in these conditions and the team send me out on a clear track, which was the key.”

The No. 84 AMG Team HTP Motorsport Mercedes-AMG GT3 of Maxi Buhk was the first of the cars still in the hunt for the title in fourth, while Soucek still managed to salvage 12th on the grid after his off at turn one.

Rob Bell’s No. 58 Garage 59 McLaren 650S GT3 was caught out on the busy track and will have to defend its points’ lead from P21.

The Total 24 Hours of Spa-winning No. 99 ROWE Racing BMW M6 GT3 is in an even worse position and will start from P39.

A couple of cars improved their time right as the red flag came out. They will see their times deleted, though it is not clear yet which cars are involved.

The three-hour race gets underway at 2:45 p.m. local time.

RESULTS: Qualifying

Vincent Wouters (@VinceWouters) is a Belgium-based sports car racing reporter, providing coverage primarily of the Blancpain GT Series.

Click to comment

More in GT World Challenge Europe