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VLN, 35th DMV Münsterlandpokal – Race Report
Bonk Motorsport Wins The Title As Manthey Wins The Race

The champions of the 2010 season of the VLN Langstreckenmeisterschaft Nürburgring are Mario Merten and Wolf Silvester. Despite their retirement in the 35th DMV Münsterlandpokal race, the Bonk Motorsport duo were able to celebrate their second championship win, having previously taken the title in 2006. For local hero Merten, it was actually his third victory, as he had also won in 2002.

During the prizegiving ceremony, and in the presence of the cheering crowd, VLN Managing Director Robert Rust symbolically handed over start number one to the new champions. ”We will now definitely celebrate the championship properly”, said a happy Merten and Silvester after the race. “Our title was occasionally hanging by a thread during the season. We did, however, not stop fighting and some of our competitors made mistakes. The best package has won finally – a competitive class and a fantastic team. We are more than happy.”

The final overall win was sorted out amongst three German premium makes. Arno Klasen, Marc Lieb and Lucas Luhr celebrated the last victory in 2010 in their Manthey Porsche after 4:01:45.709 hours racing time. They had an advantage of 3:35.857 minutes over the second placed Frank Stippler and Marc Basseng in the Audi R8 LMS entered by Phoenix-Racing. The podium was completed by Bernd Schneider and Chris Mamerow in the SLS AMG GT3 of Mamerow-Racing.

After the start, Jörg and Tim Bergmeister in the Mühler Porsche went into the lead; but after eleven race laps – then in third position – the duo had to retire with technical failure. At that moment, Basseng/Stippler were in the race lead ahead of the Manthey Porsche. Lieb then slowly closed the gap to Stippler.

When it started to rain, the Manthey trio then took advantage of their perfect strategy. During a scheduled pit stop, the team changed to rain tyres. Phoenix had come to a pit stop just before the rain started and had fitted slick tyres as the track was still dry. “In addition, I stayed out on the track one lap too long”, admitted Basseng who was not at all happy with their second place. “We are fighting to win, and, once again, we did not succeed in doing so today.”

The Manthey team, in contrast, was very happy. "It is always a good feeling to finish the season with a victory," said Lieb. “Today, everything was perfect again. Arno had a fantastic start turn and Lucas did a perfect job as always – I could thus finish the race as winner. I must admit that we also had a little bit of luck.”

After the victory of the Black Falcon-entered SLS AMG GT3 at the ninth round, Mamerow Racing was able to claim a podium finish in the final race with its example of the new car. “This was a perfect race for us”, said five times DTM Champion Schneider. “Our testing programme for the SLS is developing as scheduled. We are still lacking a bit of speed compared to the top cars but we were able to collect valuable data again. Position three is a perfect result.” Mamerow added: “Absolutely brilliant that we succeeded in finishing on the podium in our second participation.”

Behind the top three, Christian Hohenadel and Lance David Arnold in the GT3 Corvette missed the podium by 27.784 seconds only. Patrick Long finished his first participation at the Nürburgring Nordschleife in fifth place in the Haribo Porsche, together with Christian Menzel and Richard Westbrook.

The last competition for Andreas and Ralf Schall in the well-advanced-in-years Mercedes-Benz 190 E finished with a satisfying win in the class of group H vehicles up to 2.500 cc cylinder capacity. The car had its last participation in 2003 when Schall senior retired after an accident.
The championship was virtually already decided before the final of the season. Still open in contrast was the decision in the VLN Standard Production Car Cup. The third position of the Black Falcon trio with Alexander Böhm, Philipp Leisen and Carsten Knechtges was enough to gain the title.

Result - here