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Ramos, Vanthoor Win Chaotic Qualifying Race in Slovakia

WRT Audi wins chaotic qualifying race in Slovakia…

Photo: Brecht Decancq Photography

Photo: Brecht Decancq Photography

Belgian Audi Club Team WRT drivers Cesar Ramos and Laurens Vanthoor have won a chaotic Blancpain Sprint Series Qualifying Race at the Slovakia Ring this afternoon.

On a dry track all cars made it through turn one, with the No. 28 Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini of Jeroen Bleekemolen taking the lead. One corner later things went completely wrong for Tomas Enge, who first hit Stef Dusseldorp before clipping the barrier.

The Lamborghini cartwheeled over the circuit and landed on top of the barrier, where Enge climbed out of the car. The accident, in combination with rain hitting the circuit, resulted in a safety car and subsequent red flag.

Bleekemolen led the field into turn one at the restart, but in deteriorating conditions he was unable to keep the Audi drivers behind him. On lap seven René Rast passed Bleekemolen to take the lead, ahead of Winkelhock, Vanthoor and Götz.

As the rain intensified Stéphane Ortelli went off into the gravel trap again and as the pit window opened there was more drama. Dominik Baumann stopped on track, while Giorgio Pantano and Andrea Montermini went off into the gravel.

The safety car was deployed once again, but with visibility reduced to nearly nothing the race was red flagged again with 28 minutes left on the clock.

After another formation lap the race was restarted behind the safety car and it was Enzo Ide who lead Hari Proczyk into turn one, followed by Nico Verdonck and Cesar Ramos.

Ide slowly pulled away from Proczyk, while Ide’s teammate Ramos closed in on the Lamborghini and with just under 15 minutes remaining Ramos passed Proczyk to take second.

WRT then looked set for a dream 1-2 finish, until Ide spun his Audi, allowing Ramos to to take the lead. Proczyk, Verdonck and a charging Vincent Abril passed Ide as well.

On the last lap Abril tried to overtak Verdonck, but the French driver ran wide and dropped down the order, losing the Silver Cup lead to the ROAL Motorsport BMW Z4 GT3 in the process.

Aftter 27 laps it was the No. 1 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi R8 LMS ultra of Cesar Ramos and Laurens Vanthoor that crossed the line in first place, ahead of the No. 28 Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini of Jeroen Bleekemolen and the No. 84 HTP Motorsport Mercedes of Maximilian Götz and Nico Verdonck.

Marcel ten Caat (@marceltencaat) is a contributor to Sportscar365 and other publications including

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