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VLN, 54th ADAC ACAS H&R-Cup – Race Report
Manthey Wins The Dress Rehearsal For The 24 Hours

Race Gallery - Photography by Soren Herweg >>

The Manthey duo of Marc Lieb and Jochen Krumbach took victory in the VLN for the second time in a fortnight, but the two again had to fight very hard for their second victory of the season. This time it was a three way fight between the Manthey Porsche 911 GT3 R, the Phoenix Audi R8 LMS Ultra and the BMW trio of Dirk Müller, Jörg Müller and Uwe Alzen.

The Schubert BMW Z4 GT3 of Müller/Müller/Alzen was also one of the reasons for the race being stopped prematurely; Dirk Müller being in the process of lapping a Ginetta G50 in the Tiergarten section of the Nordschleife, when the two crashed heavily into the Armco. With the track looking more like a battlefield than a race track Race Control decided to red flag the event with about five minutes of remaining race time. Both Müller and the Ginetta driver, Briton Clive Richards, were able to climb out of their wrecks under their own steam.

Richards was transported to the local Adenau hospital, which he left after checkups. Dirk Müller, and his team colleges Jörg Müller and Uwe Alzen, were still classified as third; “That was one scary ending,” said a visibly shocked Dirk Müller. “I am very happy to be standing here and thankful for the safety equipment of my BMW Z4 GT3. When I heard that the Ginetta driver was fine I felt very relieved. On my side I probably will take some bruises from this, but I am sure to be ready for ALMS in Laguna Seca. Besides that the race was a very good one, the car was great and we were once again able to fight for the lead.”

With Marc Lieb and Jochen Krumbach winning their second race in a row, the Manthey team had a perfect weekend after also winning both GT Open races at the Algarve Circuit; “I did the opening stint today and it was very entertaining and wild,” said a smiling Marc Lieb. “I am sure we gave the fans a good show around the track, we were able to keep in contact with the lead all the time and took our chances when they presented themselves to us. I am sure if the red flag hadn’t come out it would have been a three way fight to the flag and so I am a little bit sad, but also relieved that both Dirk and the Ginetta driver are fine.”

The second step of the podium went to Christopher Mies and Markus Winkelhock in their Audi R8 LMS Ultra fielded by Phoenix Racing; “We are really happy with that place, we took delivery of the car on Wednesday and today we scored our first podium of the season; what more do you want?” said Mies.

“I was right behind Dirk at the crash and that looked horrifying. Luckily everyone is all right.”

Fourth place went to the other Phoenix Racing Audi R8 LMS Ultra, driven by Marc Basseng, Christopher Haase and Frank Stippler. T he trio lost a lot of time when Basseng suffered a puncture in the Fuchsröhre. The best Cup Porsche was the one of Wolfgang Kohler and Christian Menzel, this victory sealed by a superb three-hour stint by Christian Menzel.

Former F1 racer turned sportscar driver Nick Heidfeld finished a very good sixth in the Gemballa-Racing McLaren MP4-12C GT3 that he shared with Sascha Bert.

Heidfeld showed very good pace, being only five seconds off the pace of his team mate and improving throughout out the weekend, so it looks likely that we’ll see Quick Nick in the 24 Hour race in three weeks time. One place behind the McLaren was the Rowe Racing Mercedes Benz SLS AMG GT3 of Michael Zehe, Marko Hartung, Roland Rehfeld and Mark.

Besides finishing in third, Uwe Alzen was also classified in eighth place aboard his Porsche 911 GT3 Cup which he shared with Philipp Wlazik and Robert Renauer. Maxime Martin, Bas Leinders and Markus Palttala brought their Marc VDS Racing Team BMW Z4 GT3 home in ninth place, the Belgian squad experiencing suspension and tire issues after earlier running in the top six.

Rounding out the top ten was the Young Driver AMR Aston Martin Vantage of Stefan Mücke, Darren Turner, Tomas Enge and Oliver Mathai; the quartet practicing for their 24 Hours assault.

Their sister car, driven by Johannes and Ferdinand Stuck plus Dennis Rostek and Fredy Barth, had to retire prematurely with a power steering issue.

Race Gallery - Photography by Soren Herweg >>

Race result – here