Connect with us

Racing Roundup

Weekly Racing Roundup (8.22.22)

Reports from GTWC America and Asia, ADAC GT Masters and other racing action…

Photo: Brian Cleary/SRO

Winward Sweeps Road America Weekend

Two weeks after claiming its first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship win of the season at Road America, Winward Racing continued its strong form at the Wisconsin venue by sweeping the Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS round.

Philip Ellis and Russell Ward won both of last weekend’s 90-minute races in their Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo, putting the Winward pair on three wins for the season in total.

The opening race started with Ward setting off from pole, while his fellow front-row starter and Mercedes-AMG driver Steven Aghakhani spun around at Turn 2 before being collected by George Kurtz for an early safety car.

Ward created a slight lead during his stint, breaking apart from the battling Michele Beretta, Misha Goikhberg and Chandler Hull despite another caution occurring after 26 minutes following an accident for TR3 Racing Lamborghini driver Jeff Burton.

The pit stops took place with just under 50 minutes to go and Winward stayed at the head of the field, with Ellis leading from Beretta’s K-PAX Racing co-driver Andrea Caldarelli.

Ellis controlled the race from there, crossing the line 10.7 seconds ahead of Jordan Pepper who moved past his teammate Caldarelli with 29 minutes to go.

The second race started with Ellis making a strong start from pole, with Pepper slotting into second ahead of Racers Edge Motorsports driver Mario Farnbacher and Caldarelli.

The only change in the top three during the pit cycle was Farnbacher’s Honda NSX GT3 Evo22 dropping behind Caldarelli’s No. 1 Lamborghini, although Farnbacher and Ashton Harrison still went on to claim Pro-Am class honors for the second race in a row.

Goikhberg, whose car had a drive-through penalty hanging over its hood for undercutting the minimum pit stop time, let Beretta through into second with 37 minutes to go.

However, Beretta was unable to mount a challenge on Ward, who claimed victory by almost half a minute. Farnbacher and Harrison completed the outright podium.

RESULTS: Race 1 / Race 2

Photo: SRO

D’station Wins in Bizarre Sugo Conclusion

Satoshi Hoshino and Tomonobu Fujii won the second Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia powered by AWS race at Sugo in bizarre circumstances as Car Guy Racing’s Takeshi Kimura dramatically slowed down on the run to the checkered flag.

D’station Racing Aston Martin driver Hoshino sped past Kimura as the Japan Cup points leader misjudged the location of the finish line. Kimura’s Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020 was already running at a reduced pace due to a tire issue.

Kimura and Kei Cozzolino ended up third behind BMW Team Studie’s Tomohide Yamaguchi and Seiji Ara, dropping 10 points which prevented them from superseding Prince Jefri Ibrahim and Nick Foster in the overall GTWC Asia drivers’ standings.

Cozzolino made a terrific start, building a 22-second lead during the opening stint of Sunday’s 60-minute contest.

This ensured the Car Guy Ferrari remained ahead once Kimura jumped behind the wheel, after a 10-second success penalty had been applied.

A close multi-car battle for second enabled Kimura’s lead to swing back over the 20-second mark, but that was quickly halved by the tire problem and eradicated by the premature celebration, in which the Ferrari’s lights flashed on approach to the line.

The opening race of the Sugo round went to Yogibo Racing, which beat Car Guy in a Ferrari-on-Ferrari exchange.

Kiyoto Fujinami successfully held off Cozzolino during the second stint to claim victory alongside his starting co-driver Naoki Yokomizo, who surged ahead of pole-sitter Tanart Sathienthirakul at the start.

Hoshino and Fujii completed the Race 1 podium, while GTWC Asia leaders Ibrahim and Foster finished down in ninth. That was followed up by 10th for the Triple Eight pair in Race 2, putting them and Car Guy’s drivers on equal points heading into the title decider.

RESULTS: Race 1 / Race 2 / Standings

Photo: Gruppe C Photography

Engelhart, Guven Master Wet Lausitzring

Christian Engelhert and Ayhancan Guven affirmed their credentials as ADAC GT Masters title contenders by taking their first win of the season at a rain-affected Lausitzring.

The Team Joos Sportwagentechnik pairing won the opening race and left northeast Germany with a reduced 10-point gap to championship leader Raffaele Marciello, who finished fifth and third alongside Daniel Juncadella.

Engelhart led away from pole in his No. 91 Porsche 911 GT3 R and managed to keep Audi driver Patric Niederhauser at bay in tricky conditions during the first stint.

A spin for Niederhauser’s co-driver Luca Engstler enabled Jack Aitken to take second in the Emil Frey Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo that was started by Albert Costa.

Despite getting close to Guven, Aitken ended up just under 1.5 seconds shy of victory while Maximilian Paul and Marco Mapelli took third in their Lamborghini, ahead of Engstler.

The second race saw Christopher Mies and Tim Zimmermann deliver Audi’s 50th ADAC GT Masters win, as Aitken and Costa once again finished second.

After some early battling, Nicky Catsburg emerged as the driver to beat in Schubert Motorsport’s BMW M4 GT3, however the Dutchman did not pit during the mandatory 10-minute window and was handed a 49-second penalty as a result.

This gifted the lead to Zimmermann, who produced a solid closing stint to take his first career GT Masters win alongside two-time and reigning champion Mies.

Engelhart and Guven came through in fourth, establishing themselves as Marciello’s closest challengers for the title with two rounds and four races remaining.

RESULTS: Race 1 / Race 2 / Standings

Photo: Fred Hardy/SRO

Other Racing Action

***The Pro-Am duo of Kenton Koch and Bryan Putt won overall in the second Pirelli GT4 America race at Road America. Putt moved past Todd Coleman before taking the checkered flag under a safety car after a big accident for Lonestar Racing’s Zane Hodgen just after the kink. In the first race, Silver Cup points leaders Stevan McAleer and Eric Filgueiras claimed their eighth win of the season by a 15-second margin. However, they retired from the lead in Race 2 when Filgueiras encountered a problem with the left-front tire that sent his Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR into the gravel. Race 1 / Race 2

***Andy Pilgrim took his maiden GT America powered by AWS win at Road America driving a SKI Autosports Ferrari 458 Italia GT3. The former Corvette Racing star resisted pressure from a charging George Kurtz to prevail in Race 1, however Crowdstrike Racing Mercedes-AMG driver Kurtz returned fire by winning a repeat duel in the second contest. Race 2 ended with a huge accident at a late restart, which resulted in The Heart of Racing’s Gray Newell being taken to hospital with a dislocated shoulder. Race 1 / Race 2

***Muelhner Motorsport claimed its first Prototype Cup Germany series victory in the second Lausitzring encounter, courtesy of Donar Munding and Matthias Luethen who also became the first win for a Duqueine D08 Nisan in the fledgling series. Toksport WRT’s Ligier pairing of Marvin Dienst and Berkay Besler won the opener and will take a substantial 29-point lead to the Hockenheim season finale. Race 1 / Race 2

Photo: DTM

News & Notes

***Germany has announced most of its lineup for the FIA Motorsport Games in Marseille. Mercedes-AMG factory driver Luca Stolz will drive a Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo in the GT Sprint discipline, while Valentin Pierburg and Lance David Arnold will share the same type of car in the two-driver GT race. Alfred Renauer and Steffen Goerig represented Germany in 2019, sharing a Porsche 911 GT3 R.

***Performance Tech Motorsports has added an extra Ligier JS P320 Nissan to its stable for this weekend’s IMSA Prototype Challenge round at Virginia International Raceway. Experienced NASA driver and Nürburgring 24 participant Christopher Allen will pilot the No. 7 machine.

***Inter Europol Competition will run two Ligier JS P320 Nissans in next year’s Michelin Le Mans Cup. The Polish squad currently runs a pair of Ligiers in the European Le Mans Series and wants to “create a strong prototype ladder” between its programs culminating in LMP2. Inter Europol is also planning to compete in next year’s Asian Le Mans Series and is evaluating future IMSA appearances.

***2020-21 FIA Formula E world champion Nyck de Vries and two-time Rolex 24 at Daytona winner Renger van der Zande were recently honored by having their names added to the Dutch national motorsport monument at Zandvoort. Their inclusion was voted for by a jury that included two-time 24 Hours of Le Mans winner Gijs van Lennep.

 On this weekend: IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship (VIR), European Le Mans Series (Barcelona), DTM (Nürburgring), Super GT (Suzuka)

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.

Click to comment

More in Racing Roundup