24h Nürburgring - Free Practice and 1st Qualifying round
More than 150 teams today took part in Free practice and First Qualifying session for 43rd ADAC Zurich 24 Hours of Nurburgring race. At famous 25.378 km long track, which is combination of the Grand Prix Circuit and the Nordschleife, weather conditions were mixed, as usual for this region and this time of year.
Two-hours practice at afternoon started on dry track and finished with slight rain, while four-hours qualifying round at the evening was opposite, with first hours on the wet track and dry asphalt at the end.
As the track was more and more dry, lap times was faster and faster, so leaders were changing almost every minute. At the end, after clock counted to zero, we saw five changes in final two minutes and the fastest time was set by last year’s winners in No.1 Audi R8 LMS of Audi Sport Team Phoenix. Crew Christopher Haase/Christian Mamerow/Rene Rast/Markus Winkelhock lapped around Nordschleife in 8.29.806 minutes. Fastest lap is set by Rene Rast.
Only 0.089 seconds was slower No.25 BMW Z4 GT3 of BMW Sport Trophy Team Marc VDS with drivers Maxime Martin, Lucas Luhr, Markus Palttala and Richard Westbrook. Two Audis of Audi Sport Team WRT are third and fourth.
Third was No.29 Audi with drivers Nicki Thiim/Christer Joens/Pierre Kaffer/Laurens Vanthoor and fourth was No.28 Audi with drivers Christopher Mies, Edward Sandstrom, Nico Mueller and Laurens Vanthoor. Fifth position has earned by Aston Martin Racing’s No.6 Vantage with line-up Jonny Adam/Richie Stanaway/Matthias Lauda/Stefan Mucke.
Earlier in the afternoon, the fastest driver was Dominik Baumann (BMW Sports Trophy Team Schubert). He rounded one lap in 8.29.079 minutes. His team-mates in No.20 BMW Z4 GT3 are Claudia Hürtgen, Jens Klingmann and Martin Tomczyk. Second fastest was No.29 Audi (Thiim/Joens/Kaffer/Vanthoor).
Third was BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS (Augusto Farfus, Jörg Müller, Nicky Catsburg and Dirk Adorf) in No.26 BMW Z4 GT3. Fastest Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 was No.2 car of Black Falcon with drivers Yelmer Buurman, Andreas Simonsen, Adam Christodoulou and Bernd Schneider. Top 5 was rounded with one more German manufacturer – Porsche 911 GT3 R of Falken Motorsport with drivers Peter Dumbreck, Wolf Henzler, Martin Ragginger and Alexandre Imperatori.
Second two-hours Qualifying round is scheduled for Friday at 9.30. Top-30 Qualifying session and battle for pole-position we will follow from 17.10 to 17.50.