Sunday 31 July 2011

Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, round 7 at the Formula 1 race in Budapest/Hungary Kuba Giermaziak 50th Supercup winner

Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, round 7 at the Formula 1 race in Budapest/Hungary

Kuba Giermaziak 50th Supercup winner

Stuttgart. In a turbulent rain race, Kuba Giermaziak celebrated his maiden victory in the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup on the Hungaroring near Budapest. With his win, the Pole goes down in the successful history of the world’s fastest international one-make race series as the 50th winner out of 201 races contested so far. At the wheel of his 450 hp Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, which is based on the lightweight 911 GT3 RS street sports car, the VERVA Racing pilot put in a brilliant drive to outpace Dutchman Jeroen Bleekemolen (Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit) by 18.783 seconds. Third place was enough for Bleekemolen’s British teammate Sean Edwards to snatch the championship lead.

Kuba Giermaziak claimed the maiden win for a Polish and East European driver by a huge margin, very rarely seen in this fiercely-contested championship. Many young pilots have used the one-make series run as support to the Formula 1 as a launching platform for extremely successful careers in international GT racing and attracted attention with performances similar to that of the youngest driver in the field at 21 years. Taking up the sprint from fifth on the grid, Giermaziak immediately shot past the first rivals and already after one lap had moved into third place. In lap four he had snatched the lead.

During the first laps on the wet Grand Prix circuit, positions changed almost by the second. Kévin Estre, the French Supercup newcomer driving for Hermes Attempto Racing, made the most of his pole position and initially defended his lead. When he visited the gravel in the lap one, René Rast (Germany) took his place at the front. But under such difficult conditions the points’ leader from VELTINS Lechner Racing made several mistakes and fell back in the field. Over the course of the race, the title defender had to let more opponents past. With four laps to the flag, technical problems forced the German into retirement, which robbed him of his overall points’ lead. Nick Tandy also came away from the seventh round with a disappointing result. Driving for Konrad Motorsport, the Briton spun in the second lap and lost touch with the front-runners. Crossing the finish line in ninth, last year’s vice-champion very likely has to bury his title aspirations completely.

Meanwhile at the front, Kuba Giermaziak continued to pull away from his pursuers. With his VERVA Racing team, he had previously tested in the rain on the Hungaroring. Team boss Timo Rumpfkeil could implement the insight gained from this almost 1:1 in the race. Behind the leader, Sean Edwards and Kévin Estre managed to fend off any attacks for quite some time before the Frenchman made some errors and lost contact to the front-runners to finish in fifth. For the Briton, this didn’t bring much relief. His teammate Jeroen Bleekemolen put him under immense pressure from behind to finally pass him shortly before the finish in the final lap to snatch second. For the two-time Supercup winner, this marked his first podium result so far this season.

Behind the Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit duo, Norbert Siedler’s stunning chase through the field was rewarded with fourth place. Taking up the race from tenth place after a poor qualifying, VELTINS Lechner Racing sent the Austrian as well as René Rast into the race on brand new rain tyres. With sixth, Robert Lukas yielded his best result this season behind his teammate Kévin Estre.

Kuba Giermaziak (winner): “I’m absolutely delighted with my first victory in the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup, and my biggest thanks go to my team. It’s incredible how hard the boys work to put a perfect car on the track for us at every race. We tested here in Budapest, luckily in rain, and that paid off. We knew we’d do very well on the wet circuit, but we hadn’t anticipated that we’d do it with such a huge advantage. Despite the awful weather conditions I didn’t make any mistakes. I’m particularly pleased for the many Polish fans who came so far this weekend to support us. Thank you all very much.”

Jeroen Bleekemolen (second): “What a great race. I started from seventh, struggled with grip at the start and lost two places. But I crawled my way up lap by lap with a couple of good overtaking manoeuvres – huge fun! I tried to be cautious with my tyres over the whole distance, even during the formation lap, and it proved very helpful at the end when the track dried up, particularly for overtaking Sean.”

Sean Edwards (third): “Now that was one crazy race. I had a lot of fun. The grip wasn’t really great over the distance and I had to fight hard to defend my position. But there was nothing I could do about Jeroen. Still, I’m totally happy. Both cars from Abu Dhabi by tolimit on the podium, the first time this season - that’s a great result. I’m hoping we can continue like this at the next race in Spa. The championship is really exciting now.”

Race result
1. Kuba Giermaziak (PL) VERVA Racing Team, 30:12.507 minutes
2. Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL), Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit, + 18.783 seconds
3. Sean Edwards (GB), Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit, + 19.449
4. Norbert Siedler (A), VELTINS Lechner Racing, + 21.931
5. Kévin Estre (F), Hermes Attempto Racing, + 23.112
6. Robert Lukas (PL), Hermes Attempto Racing, + 24.539

Drivers’ classification after 7 of 11 races
1. Sean Edwards (GB), 106 points
2. René Rast (D), 105
3. Norbert Siedler (A), 97
4. Kuba Giermaziak (PL), 90
5. Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL), 86
6. Nick Tandy (GB), 79

Round 8 of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup takes place on 28 August as support to the Formula 1 race in Spa-Francorchamps/Belgium.

Publi Relations and Media
Motor and Sports Press
Oliver Hilger

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