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VLN, 41st Adenauer ADAC Rundstrecken Trophy - Race Report
Mamerow By A Whisker From Phoenix

The scenario in the final stage of the 41st Adenauer ADAC Rundstrecken-Trophy race could not have been more exciting. After 27 race laps, Chris Mamerow took the chequered flag ahead of Hans-Joachim Stuck in the Audi R8 LMS entered by Phoenix-Racing with a razor-thin advantage of 0.240 seconds.

It was in the very last few metres of the race and in heavy rain that Mamerow finally managed to go into the lead. Lance David Arnold and Christian Menzel followed through in third and thus celebrated the first race finish for the Porsche 911 GT3 of the Haribo Team Manthey. 123 cars out of the 168 race starters made it to the finish line. The total of 176 teams had participated before in the timed practice.

In the timed practice session on Saturday morning, Mamerow’s team mate Marc Basseng secured pole position for the team with a time of 8:17.288 minutes. Start driver Mamerow was able to defend the leading position at the start but had to let Frank Stippler, who shared the steering wheel in the Phoenix-R8 with Stuck, pass at the beginning of the second lap.

 After three-quarter race distance the Audi team had extended their lead to about one minute. Due to strong fog and the rain which then followed, the gaps between the top teams became shorter again. At the last scheduled pit stop, Arnold in the Haribo-Porsche already changed to rain tyres. The race driver from Düsseldorf thus temporarily moved up into place two when Mamerow and Phoenix Racing had to make an unscheduled pit stop to change to wet-weather tyres. “Unfortunately, I encountered some problems with the tyres in the first lap after the change as the track was still quite dry, hence I had to struggle with some understeering in the wet”, admitted Arnold at the finish. Mamerow closed the gap again quickly and started to fight for the lead.

The showdown came in the last lap when Stuck and Mamerow joined the Nordschleife neck-to-neck. “It’s not over until it’s over”, said Mamerow after the race with a big grin in his face. “In some sections, the Audi was faster and I was in others. At the Döttinger Höhe then, I was pushing extremely hard and moved ahead in the Tiergarten.” Stuck proved to be a good sportsman after the race: “The final laps were simply cool. We both gave everything. I enjoyed the battle with Chris so extremely much that I can almost already forget that we made it into second position only. This is what makes the endurance racing championship such an exciting series.”

Basseng, who is familiar both with the Audi R8 and the Porsche 911 GT3 R due to his participations in the endurance racing championship, gave a very positive feedback on the balance of the field. “The top cars have been very well classified by the Technical Commission. This is really remarkable as totally different concepts thus lead to almost identical results at the Nordschleife.” In addition to place two overall, Stippler/ Stuck could also score the fastest race lap. This fastest lap time of 8:16.112 minutes corresponds to an average speed of 176.832 km/h.

Race Result – here

Sören Herweg