The ADAC GT Masters drivers were back on the track after two months of summer vacation. And perhaps the long break was the reason of the many incidents and penalties in the Saturday’s race, but we’ll never know.
Nicolai Sylvest took Pole Position for Team Zakspeed BKK Mobil Oil Racing Mercedes #20, ahead of MANN-FILTER Team HTP Motorsport Mercedes #48 and Zakspeeds #21. Montaplast by Land-Motorsport Audi #28 stopped the Mercedes dominance – before another HTP #47 on P5.
Callaway Competition Corvette #1, the championship leader, started all the way back from P7, while Mikkel Jensen got BMW Team Schnitzer #42 on 14th position.
The start was totally chaotic, where the race director kept the red lights on for a really long time. It meant that BMW Mücke Motorsport #25 flew by from P6 and took the lead in Turn 1. Poor Sylvest was all the way down to fifth, due to a collision between Team ISR Audi #33 and Montaplast by Land-Motorsport #28,which sent #33 to the gravel and out of the race. BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #26 and Callaway Competition Corvette #1 also did a tour on the gravel but came back on the track. It then revealed that #1 was the one responsible for the crash and they got a drive-through penalty for it.
The stranded #33 triggered a Safety Car period, which causing the driving standard to be subsequently better. BMW Mücke Motorsport #25 was leading ahead of Team Zakspeed BKK Mobil Oil Racing Mercedes #20, and MANN-FILTER Team HTP Motorsport Mercedes #48.
BMW Team Schnitzer #42 was out of the race when they got hit from behind.
A bit over ten minutes later there was green flag again. It didn’t go so much better when KÜS Team75 Bernhard Porsche #18 ended up on the gravel in Turn 1, and hence deployed another SC.
EFP by TECE Audi #12 drove with a broken suspension. Then it was obvious that they were the one responsible for #18 stopping on the gravel, when Florian Spengler in #12 did a hopeless dive on Adrien de Leener in #18. The latter had no chance to avoid him.
RWT Racing Corvette #13 crawled slowly but surely into the pits, and later retired from the race without being involved in an incident.
BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #25 got investigated for a jumpstart.
IronForce by Ring Police Porsche #69 had a solospin right in front of the Mercedes Tribune, but Jan-Erik Slooten could continue.
Montaplast by Land-Motorsport Audi #29 got pushed off the track by YACO Racing Audi #50, and a few corners later Philip Geipel in #50 went off track by himself when his suspension got damaged. #50 got a black and white warning flag, but he was already out of the race.
BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #24 was pushed off the track by BMW Team Schnitzer #43, so that Mike David Ortmann hit one of the styrofoam cutboard on the side of the track, to help the drivers being on the track. BWT Mücke Motorsport #26 took it to their advantage and drove past both #24 and #43.
KÜS Team75 Bernhard Porsche #17 and BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #25 got both a five-second pitstop penalty, that must be taken when they did their obligatory pitstop. The penalty was given due to them being on the wrong place at the start of the race.
MRS GT-Racing BMW #14 stalled on the track, so Jens Klingmann had to park the car.
After the pitstop, Kim Luis Schramm in #20 managed to come out in front, but he had to give up the place to Maximilian Buhk i #48 after a few corners.
With 23 minutes left, there was another Safety Car when the race director wanted to remove #14 from the track. They waited until everyone had taken their pitstop to not cause problems for some of the teams.
The race was quickly restarted again and it went by rather calmly. However there was close traffic in the chicane when ORANGE1 by GRT Grasser #63 was up to drive on two wheels when they were about to overtake a few competitors.
Both Montaplast by Land-Motorsport Audi cars retired exactly on the same lap. It wasn’t obvious on the cars but they had been involved in a battle with #63.
AutoArena Motorsport Mercedes #84 drove to the pit with a puncture on one of the front tires and was therefore out of the race.
Team Zakspeed BKK Mobil Oil Racing Mercedes #20 was pushed off the track when GRT Grasser Racing Team #19 completely forgot to brake, with fourteen minutes left of the race. Thus a potential podium place was out of their grasp – again and again. #19 got a drive-through for the incident, but it did nothing to alleviate their pain.
Phoenix Racing Audi #5 did a little push to BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #26, but both cars could continue.
#5 and Precote Herberth Motorsport Porsche #99 also had a bit of contact, which ended with #5 doing a revenge on #99 as well as an overtaking. However, the stewards weren’t impressed with that and gave Philip Ellis in #5 a drive-through.
MANN-FILTER Team HTP Motorsport Mercedes #48 with Maximilian Buhk and Indy Dontje won the race, ahead of BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #25 with Christopher Haase and Ricardo Feller, and ORANGE1 by GRT Grasser Lamborghini #63 with Mirko Bortolotti and Andrea Caldarelli.
Of so one thought…
Because BWT Mücke Motorsport Audi #25 got a 30-second time penalty for the wrong placement under the start, and hence they were out of the points. Which means that #63 got promoted to P2, and MANN-FILTER Team HTP Motorsport Mercedes #47 with Maximilian Götz and Markus Pommer overtook the third place.
The second race of ADAC GT Masters race will be run on Sunday – hopefully without as many incidents as there were today.