Callaway Competition Corvette #1 had taken Pole Position for the second day in ADAC GT Masters at Red Bull Ring.
The local HB Racing Ferrari #7 secured second place, ahead of Precote Herberth Motorsport Porsche #99, EFP by TECE Audi #12, MANN-FILTER Team HTP Mercedes #47, and MRS GT-Racing BMW #14. Six different brands in top 6.
Mikkel Jensen and Timo Scheider would start from P13 in BMW Team Schnitzer #42, while Nicolai Sylvest and Kim Luis Schramm were all the way down on P25 in Team Zakspeed BKK Mobil Oil Racing Mercedes #20.
All 36 cars were ready to start the race, with heavy rain clouds looming in the horizon.
HB Racing Ferrari #7 got the worst possible start when they had a puncture already on the first lap. EFP by TECE Audi #12 overtook a number of cars with one set of wheel on the grass. Unsurprisingly, it was under investigation by the stewards, and they had to give back one place.
Phoenix Racing Audi #5 had a contact on the first lap, so they had to pit with their bonnet completely open.
Three minutes in, the race was declared wet when rain showers hung in the air a few kilometres away from the track, and one lap after fell on the track.
BMW Team Schnitzer #43 was spun around, when GRT Grasser Racing Team #82 got hit by KÜS Team75 Bernhard #18 and thus created a domino effect. A few laps later KÜS Team75 Bernhard #17 had to retire due to a technical problem, and their sister car #18 got a drive-through for the incident.
The cars started to pit when the rain fell harder and harder, so that they could change to wet tires.
KÜS Team75 Bernhard #18 spun in the pit entry, but it wasn’t so bad that Klaus Bachler could continue to drive to the pitbox and got rain tires mounted.
Christopher Mies did a spectacular 540 degrees spin in Montaplast by Land-Motorsport Audi #29, but he could go on.
The different tire strategies had a big influence in the field. It was clear that the wet tires were the best choice, but the tire change had cost them quite a bit of time. But there were also some who tried to sneak in with dry tires and they were still out in front.
After the first fifteen minutes of the race, Callaway Competition #1 led ahead of MANN-FILTER Team HTP Mercedes #47, Team ISR Audi #33, and MRS GT-Racing BMW #14 – all four were on slicks.
The rain then stopped, but the track was still damp, so it was about to drive carefully and avoid mistakes.
Esteban Guerrieri in Honda Team Schubert Motorsport #10 apun by himself when he came too far over the curb. Luckily, he didn’t hit the armco, even though the nice white NSX GT3 was heading towards it.
The rest of the teams who were on slicks changed to rain tires when they did their driver change, since it wouldn’t cost them an extra time.
BMW Team Schnitzer #42 hit one of the tires of MRS GT-Racing #14 during their pitstop, which was converted into a 30-second time penalty for #42 after the race.
After all the pitstops, Callaway Competition Corvette #1 was still leading, in front of Team ISR Audi #33, and MANN-FILTER Team HTP Mercedes #47.
The track was slowly but surely drying up, with fifteen minutes left on the clock, so the drivers began to look for the wet patches outside the racing line to cool down their tires.
BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #24 and Montaplast by Land-Motorsport #29 had a bit of robust battle, where #29 was pushing #24 twice, before Alessio Picariello went past Mike David Ortmann.
Ten minutes before the race ended, Markus Pommer in #47 took the second place from Filip Salaquarda in #33.
The teams really should take care of the rain tires, since there was a completely dry line on the track with five minutes left.
It was something that Orange1 by GRT Grasser Lamborghini #63 really benefited from. They didn’t change to wet tires and were now driving four seconds faster than everyone else! From being hopeless behind, they were suddenly up for a podium place and even grabbed second place on the penultimate lap.
But once again, nobody could touch Callaway Competition Corvette #1 in Austria this year – Marvin Kirchhöfer and Daniel Keilwitz claimed the victory regardless of the weather.
Orange1 by GRT Grasser Lamborghini #63 with Mirko Bortolotti and Andrea Caldarelli took the second place, ahead of MANN-FILTER Team HTP Mercedes #47 with Maximilian Götz and Markus Pommer.
BMW Team Schnitzer #42 with Mikkel Jensen and Timo Scheider fell back to P10 after the time penalty, but they finished fourth nevertheless. Kim Luis Schramm and Team Zakspeed BKK Mobil Oil Racing #20 teammate Nicolai Sylvest finished the race on P23, in a spring season where nothing went their way.
Now all the teams will go on a summer break, whee at least #20 will hope for a better luck after the break.
Callaway Competition Corvette #1 leads the championship ahead of Precote Herberth Motorsport Porsche #99 and MANN-FILTER Team HTP Mercedes #47. BMW Team Schnitzer #42 is currently fifth, while Team Zakspeed BKK Mobil Oil Racing #20 yet to score a point this season.
ADAC GT Masters will be back on 4 and 5 August at the Nürburgring.