Unstoppable: this is how Sheldon Van Der Linde’s Lausitzring weekend can be summarized, who conceded an encore in Race 2, winning the second win in a row.
After giving the BMW M4 GT3 its first success in the German series on Saturday, the South African completed the masterpiece today by hitting first the Pole Position in Qualifying, and then also winning the second race on the program.
The Schubert Motorsport standard bearer did not start very well, but the skirmishes behind him allowed him to keep the record, managed very well even after the pit stop on lap 9.
In the first corners there were sparks for the remaining positions on the podium, with an aggressive Mirko Bortolotti looking for the opening, also hitting the Mercedes-AMG of Maro Engel (GruppeM Racing), who by cutting the 2-3 chicane returned to the front of the Lamborghini Huracán of the Grasser Racing Team driver, who braking allowed René Rast (Team ABT Sportsline) to overtake him with his Audi R8 LMS.
Maro Engel, Mercedes-AMG Team GruppeM Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3
Photo by: Andreas Beil
In the pit stop waltzes, S.Van Der Linde held the lead ahead of Engel and Rast, while Bortolotti slipped behind Philipp Eng’s BMW (Schubert Motorsport) and Nico Müller’s Audi (Team Rosberg), with the Swiss who defended himself very well from Trentino despite having cold tires and stopped the next lap after him.
The duel between the two continued going to retake Eng and allowing Nick Cassidy – in that seventh moment – to approach them with the AF Corse Ferrari 488 branded AlphaTauri, until the New Zealander found himself slowed down by a puncture and forced to raise the white flag on lap 33 with 4 ‘on the clock at the end.
The duels continued on the edge of tenths, but S.Van Der Linde did not give up an inch despite Engel and Rast had recovered, preceding the two Germans in a sprint.
Eng held on to fourth place with gritted teeth, with Müller and Bortolotti at his heels, but without finding the opportunity to overcome.
Philipp Eng, Schubert Motorsport BMW M4 GT3
Photo by: Andreas Beil
Ricardo Feller instead crossed the line seventh with the second Audi of Team ABT Sportsline, after a bitter fight with Lucas Auer’s Mercedes (Team Winward), Dennis Olsen’s Porsche 911 GT3-R (SSR Performance) and BMW by Marco Wittmann (Walkenhorst Motorsport), who closed the Top10 by mocking Dennis Olsen on the other Porsche of the SSR.
The Mercedes of Luca Stolz (HRT), Maximilian Götz (Winward Racing), Arjun Maini (HRT) and David Schumacher (Winwad Racing) also remain dry, as well as the Lamborghini of Rolf Ineichen (GRT) and the Audi of Kelvin Van Der Linde (ABT), who also ran into a flat tire like many other colleagues over the weekend, a sign that the cleanliness of the track was not entirely adequate.
Maximilian Buhk (Mercedes-Team Mücke), Thomas Preining (Porsche-Küs Team Berhard) and Nicki Thiim (Lamborghini-T3) did not finish the race, while a puncture stopped Mikael Grenier (Mercedes-GruppeM) – already in the formation lap – and Marius Zug (Audi-Attempto Racing).
AF Corse instead withdrew before the start Felipe Fraga’s Ferrari-Red Bull, which was destroyed in the fire in Qualifying 2.