Weekend Recap: GTWC Europe, Australia and N24 Qualifying Race
Catch up on GT racing from around the globe as sports car racing season heats up...
Maro Engel and Luca Stolz took a lights-to-flag victory in the second race of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS Sprint Cup season-opener at Magny-Cours.
The German pair claimed Toksport WRT’s maiden GTWC Europe race win after Engel delivered the team’s first overall pole position on Sunday morning in the No. 6 Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo.
Engel controlled the opening stint despite a challenge from Albert Costa in the No. 163 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo, before using the pit window to swap out for Stolz who kept Toksport WRT ahead through a pair of second-half safety car periods.
After one hour, Stolz crossed the line three seconds ahead of Charles Weerts in the No. 32 Team WRT Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo that prevailed in Saturday evening’s 60-minute race.
Shahin, Tander Win Race 2 at The Bend
A late-race pass on Stephen Grove has given Yasser Shahin and Garth Tander provisional victory in Sunday’s Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia powered by AWS round at The Bend Motorsport Park.
Shahin pedaled the No. 777 Melbourne Performance Centre Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo to a 10.5-second win over Grove’s Porsche 911 GT3 R following a late charge by the Audi driver, who emerged from third at the start of his stint.
A five-second post-race time penalty for a pit lane incident with the No. 24 Audi of Tony Bates saw the official margin of victory reduced but was still enough for the win.
Saturday’s race-winning Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 of Brett Hobson was one of four retirements in Race 2, with Hobson completing only five laps due to gear selection issues.
Frikadelli Claims 1-2 in N24 Qualifying Race
Porsche’s recent Nordschleife form continued as the Frikadelli Racing Team crew of Frederic Makowiecki, Patrick Pilet, Maxime Martin and Dennis Olsen won the six-hour qualifying race for next month’s Nürburgring 24.
The drivers of the No. 31 Porsche 911 GT3 R led a one-two result for Frikadelli as Matt Campbell, Earl Bamber, Nick Tandy and Mathieu Jaminet finished second in the No. 30.
It initially looked as though Porsche had sealed one-two-three after Manthey Racing’s No. 911 entry for Matteo Cairoli, Michael Christensen and Lars Kern crossed the line in second, only to be handed a time penalty for failing to obey flag signals.
This demoted the ‘Grello’ Porsche to seventh and elevated the pole-sitting No. 11 Phoenix Racing Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo of Nicki Thiim, Michele Beretta, Frank Stippler and Vincent Kolb to the final podium spot.
Olsen took the checkered flag 15 seconds ahead of Kern before the penalty was applied, with Bamber around a minute behind his teammate after defending from Beretta through the final stint.