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Audi vs BMW With Eight Hours to Go

Audi and BMW keep battling for every second with eight hours to go…

Photo: Kevin Hinton

Photo: Kevin Hinton

The No. 1 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi R8 of Laurens Vanthoor, René Rast and Markus Winkelhock leads the Total 24 Hours of Spa with eight hours still on the clock, still battling fiercely with the No. 77 Marc VDS Racing BMW Z4.

Depending on the pitstops, BMW and Audi alternate at the head of the field. While the No. 1 Audi was able to pull a gap as the race resumed yesterday evening, Markus Palttala, Dirk Werner and Lucas Luhr turned the tide halfway through the night, edging closer a couple of seconds per stint.

The BMW crew brought the gap down from 50 to 35 seconds as the night came to an end, while simultaneously trying to gain a pitstop on the No. 1 Audi by the end of the race.

While Marc VDS lost its No. 66 during the night as a collision with a rabbit destroyed the radiator, WRT still has all of its pro cars at in the top four, though the No. 2 of Lotterer-Tréluyer-Fässler and No. 3 of Mies-Stippler-Nash can’t keep up with the pace of the two leaders.

While Stéphane Ortelli, Edward Sandström and Grégory Guilvert were initially able to mix it with the WRT cars, the No. 26 Saintéloc Audi gradually dropped to fifth, three laps down on the leaders.

With the scorching and faultless pace at the head of the field, it’s looking ever more unlikely HTP Motorsport will be able the repeat last year’s victory, with its best placed No. 86 car currently in sixth, right in front of the No. 63 Black Falcon SLS AMG GT3.

Villorba Corse firmly holds the lead in the Pro-Am Cup with the No. 90 Ferrari of Andrea Montermini, Stefano Gaï, Francesco Castellacci and Andrea Rizzoli, with its main challenger, the No. 12 TDS Racing BMW Z4 crashing out in the early hours.

Meanwhile both Bentleys moved up back into the top 20, with the No. 7 currently lying in P13 and No. 8 in P19.

Of all the drivers that were involved in the heavy accidents at the beginning of the race, Marcus Mahy (No. 111 Kessel Ferrari) is the only one still in the hospital at the moment.

RESULTS: After 16 hours

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

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