Porsche customer teams aim to use the night to their advantage

Porsche customer teams aim to use the night to their advantage

01.08.2021: 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) The 24 Hours of Spa got off to a wild start. After the first four hours of racing with 84 laps completed, the best Porsche customer teams are looking promising in positions seven, nine, twelve and 15.

 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium)



The 24 Hours of Spa got off to a wild start. After the first four hours of racing with 84 laps completed, the best Porsche customer teams are looking promising in positions seven, nine, twelve and 15.



 Schnabl Engineering’s 911 GT3 R with the French works driver Fred Makowiecki as well as Michael Christensen (Denmark) and Dennis Olsen (Norway) have ploughed through the field from P25 to seventh place.



Josh Burdon (Australia), Alexandre Imperatori (Switzerland) and Edoardo Liberati (Italy) even managed to charge from 37th on the grid to ninth place with their 500+PS Porsche fielded by the KCMG squad.



The initial phase of the endurance classic was interrupted by a serious accident in the Eau Rouge/Raidillon corner combination, in which Rutronik Racing’s entry became entangled. While the Porsche driver Kévin Estre was unharmed, this marked the end of the race for the Frenchman and his teammates Richard Lietz (Austria) and Sven Müller (Germany).



Shortly after the 50-minute full course yellow, heavy rain resulted in hectic activity in the pit lane. Later, the 7.004-kilometre Grand Prix circuit dried up, making it necessary to switch back to slicks. Various drive-through penalties for disregarding the track markings threw the best-placed Porsche customer teams down the field time and again.




Live streaming of the event



Spectators can watch the Spa 24-hour race via a free live stream on the website http://www.intercontinentalgtchallenge.com. Live timing is also available here.




Comments about the start of the race



Sebastian Golz (Project Manager Porsche 911 GT3 R)
: “The first four hours here in Spa-Francorchamps were exciting. We’ve experienced it all here today: from a dry to wet track through to a major accident, from which Kévin Estre came out unscathed. It’s been a clean race so far for our teams, but we’re fighting on the edge and the drivers sometimes overshoot the track limits in some places. That handed us the odd drive-through penalty and cost valuable points. We’re currently working on resolving this issue and we’re trying to get our cars back up the front. Let’s wait and see what the night brings.”



Frédéric Makowiecki (Schnabl Engineering, Porsche 911 GT3 R #3)
: “The start was a challenge – it’s a bit outlandish when you start in the middle of more than 50 cars. Luckily the start went without incident. Our nine-eleven responds well and we’re able to fight the way it should be. We’re strong on slicks in the rain. There’s still some setup work ahead of us with the wet tyres. I’m proud of how some of our teams managed to prepare the cars for this race in the shortest possible time.”



Josh Burdon (KCMG, Porsche 911 GT3 R #18):
“Despite the changeable conditions, the race got off to a good start for us. During the preparations, we struggled with the balance of our car and we knew that it would be tough for us to progress from 37th on the grid. After my double stint, I handed the Porsche over in P15, so we’re on schedule. We’ll try to avoid making any mistakes and get through the night safely.”



Mathieu Jaminet (GPX Racing, Porsche 911 GT3 R #22):
“It was a little crazy. Two laps after I took the wheel from Earl Bamber, rain set in. We stayed out a little longer on the slicks, but there was so much water on the track that I almost flew off. That cost us some time. I managed to overtake a lot of cars on wet tyres. After the track dried off, we switched back to slicks. Unfortunately, I was held up by a car from the silver class. The driver tried desperately to defend his position as if it were the final sprint across the finish line after 24 hours.”



Laurens Vanthoor (KCMG, Porsche 911 GT3 R #47):
“Everything went well for us at the start. When rain set in, we made the right decision and switched to the appropriate tyres at the right time. This has brought us up to second position. Unfortunately, we were then handed a pit lane drive-through penalty because Nick and I exceeded the track limits – that cancelled out the progress we’d made. That shouldn’t actually happen, but we still have time to get ahead again.”



Klaus Bachler (Dinamic Motorsport, Porsche 911 GT3 R #54)
: “Our start was pretty good. Unfortunately, after a few laps, there was a minor nudge with another car which damaged our front splitter. After the serious crash in Raidillon, we encountered debris then rain set in after the full course yellow – so the initial phase of the race was somewhat chaotic. All in all, our Porsche is running well.”




Holger Eckhardt- photos Porsche



Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/porsche-customer-teams-use-night-their-advantage-24h-spa---227150.html

01.08.2021 / MaP

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