A lively start to the Porsche Endurance Trophy at Zolder!

A lively start to the Porsche Endurance Trophy at Zolder!

20.05.2019: · Two races decided by sprints · Match drawn between de Wilde and Bouvy/Coens in the 911 Class · Doornbos/van Splunteren and the Redant family prevail in the Cayman Clubsport Class

·      Two races decided by sprints

·      Match drawn between de Wilde and Bouvy/Coens in the 911 Class

·     Doornbos/van Splunteren and the Redant family prevail in the Cayman Clubsport Class
 



 



The Porsche Endurance Trophy kicked off this weekend at the Circuit Zolder, in the prestigious setting of the DTM. On this occasion, no fewer than 13 Porsche cars were entered for two races of one hour and a lap each in the Belcar Endurance Championship. And the least one can say is that there were plenty of duels!
 




Race 1: John de Wilde and van Splunteren/Doornbos first winners

 


In the 911 Class, the best start in Race 1 was made by John de Wilde. But just as we thought he would be heading for victory, the Porsche 991 #37 came out too wide out of the Bianchi corner a third of the way through the race. As a result, de Wilde made a detour into the gravel and had to cede his lead to the THEMS Racing by EMG Motorsport Porsche #3, driven by Nicolas van Dierendonck and Filip Teunkens.
 


However, de Wilde continued to put pressure on the others and the safety car intervention, following the minor excursion by the #992 car entered by PG Motorsport, allowed him to retake the lead ahead of the No Speed Limit Porsche #991 of Fred Bouvy and Damien Coens. With only eight minutes of racing remaining on the restart, the positions remained unchanged to the finish, with the two Porsche cars also finishing eighth and ninth in the overall standings. Van Dierendonck and Teunkens in car #03 completed the podium, while Franck Beliën finished fourth. Wim Meulders and Rik Renmans, who were partners in the Speedlover Porsche 991 #150, finished fifth. 
  


In the new Cayman Clubsport Class, reserved for old and new generation Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport cars, the DVB Racing car #711 made a strong start ahead of the Team GP Elite car #724, driven by Dutchman Robert Doornbos. But the former F1 driver was waiting for the pit-stop of the DVB Racing car to take the lead before handing over to his team-mate Paul van Splunteren. The Dutchman managed to keep the lead to the very end and opened the Cayman Clubsport class rankings. The first runner-up was the Cayman #777 of PG Motorsport driven by Niels Nipperus and Lars Poell, who were ahead of the Redant family with the RED ANT Racing car #700.
 


“What a battle! I really had to fight in the last few laps to gain this victory. Robert had built up a good gap at the beginning of the race, but the safety car took everything away from us,”said Paul van Splunteren. Robert Doornbos added: “I had a great deal of fun driving this Porsche Cayman. The sensations are very different from those I experienced in single-seaters, but I was pleasantly surprised by the balance of this car. And then, it is a class where only driving can make the difference.”
 


 


Race 2: Bouvy/Coens and the Redant family in the rain


 
As a consequence of heavy rain shortly before the start, the second race of the weekend was started under the safety car procedure. It gave an opportunity to several drivers to take their mandatory pit-stop before the effective start. In the class dedicated to 911 cars, it was Fred Bouvy who took best advantage of this strategy, the driver of car #911 managing to take the race by the scruff of the neck quickly and then widened the gap.



The appearance of the safety car just 16 minutes before the end of the race did not change anything at the top of the rankings, since the Porsche #991 of Fred Bouvy and Damien Coens (No Speed Limit) won ahead of the #37 car of John de Wilde, who had made a great fight-back, and the #3 car of Filip Teunkens and Nicolas van Dierendonck (THEMS Racing by EMG Motorsport). In this second rather straight-forward confrontation, Franck Beliën was fourth ahead of Luc Moortgat and Dieter and Wim Kuijl (LM Racing) in car #96. The last crew to pit in order to make their driver change, Rik Renmans and Wim Meulders, had to settle for sixth place in the Speedlover car #150.
 


Although it did not cause any upheaval in the 911 Class, the ultimate safety car intervention tightened clamps on the Cayman Clubsport Class, sufficiently to provide a breathless final sprint of three laps between the three leaders! The fight finally turned in the Redant family's advantage in the #700 car (RED ANT Racing) which won its first victory ahead of the Niels Nipperus and Lars Poell car #777 (Cayman by PG Motorsport) and the Paul van Splunteren and Robert Doornbos car #724 (Team GP Elite).
 


“The pit stop was the key moment in this race,” reacted an extremely contented Bert Redant. “Yannick drove most of the race, which allowed us to finish first in the Cayman and fifth overall in the Porsche Class. That is fantastic!” Finally, Harald and Alexander Goddijn's car #701 (GP) and Ad Geerts, Luc van der Feesten and Sven van Laere's car #711 (DVB Racing) completed the top 5 in the Class.
 


“The conditions were very difficult, but the Porsche-Michelin pairing worked very well in the rain. The proof was that Bouvy, de Wilde, Teunkens and van Dierendonck were among the leaders! But that is not the only satisfaction: the first competitors in the Porsche Cayman Trophy also performed well in the overall Belcar ranking,” said Steven Stichelbout, Series Manager.
 


After a successful and exciting opening weekend, the Porsche Endurance Trophy drivers have very little time to prepare for their next event. In two weeks' time, they will meet again at Zolder for the Superprix. This will be an opportunity which those who were defeated in this first round will not hesitate to grasp with a view to taking their revenge!


 


Calendar for the Porsche Endurance Trophy (911 Class)

 
3 April: Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps - Official Roll-Out
17-19 May: Circuit Zolder - DTM (2x 60 minutes)
1-2 June: Circuit Zolder - Superprix (180 minutes)
12-13 July: Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps - 25H VW Fun Cup (180 minutes)
8-11 August: Circuit Zolder - Eleven Sports 24 Hours of Zolder
4-6 October: Circuit Zolder - American Festival Nascar Finals (125 minutes)
18-20 October: TT Circuit Assen - Final Races (125 minutes)
 
 


Calendar for thePorsche Endurance Trophy (Cayman Clubsport class)


 
3 April: Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps - Official Roll-Out
17-19 May: Circuit Zolder - DTM (2 x 60 minutes)
1-2 June: Circuit Zolder - Superprix (180 minutes)
7-9 June: Circuit Zandvoort - Pinksterraces (2 x 50 minutes)
12-13 July: Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps - 25H VW Fun Cup (180 minutes)
4-6 October: Circuit Zolder - American Festival Nascar Finals (125 minutes)
18-20 October: TT Circuit Assen - Final Races (125 minutes)




Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Benelux- also photos

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20.05.2019 / MaP

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