Thursday 4 August 2011

Porsche Motorsport around the world

Porsche Motorsport around the world

Stuttgart. The Motorsport Newsletter regularly provides information on Porsche Motorsport around the world. More detailed information and additional photographs are available for accredited journalists from the press database.

American Le Mans Series: Race luck eludes swift Flying Lizards
After Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long’s second place in Lime Rock Park (9 July), the situation initially looked good for the title defenders to claim another podium spot at round four of the American Le Mans Series on the Mosport International Raceway near Toronto (24 July) in Canada. At the halfway mark, works driver Bergmeister lay in the top three with the Flying Lizard Porsche 911 GT3 RSR and at times even led the field. Shortly before the scheduled pit stop, the race car lost power steering fluid. After lengthy repairs the duo finally saw the flag in twelfth. Works pilot Wolf Henzler and America’s Bryan Sellers crossed the finish line with the 911 GT3 RSR fielded by Falken Tire in fifth. Spencer Pumpelly and Duncan Ende won the GTC class in the TRG-run 911 GT3 Cup.

International GT Open: Gianluca Roda and Fabio Babini in second place at half time
After races seven and eight in Britain’s Brand Hatch (23/24 July), Italians Gianluca Roda and Fabio Babini rank second by just one point in the drivers’ classification of the “GTS” class for GT3 vehicles. Roda, an entrepreneur from Como who won the 2010 Porsche Cup as the best private driver, as well as Babini, a professional racer from Faenza, planted their Autorlando Sport 911 GT3 R on fourth place at Saturday’s 70-minute race and took second in their class at Sunday’s 50-minute sprint.

Grand-Am: Andrew Davis and Leh Keen lead with three races to go
Nine of the twelve Grand-Am races are over, and since the eighth race in California’s Laguna Seca (9 July), Andrew Davis with his teammate Leh Keen hold the points’ lead in the Grand Touring class. The two Americans started from pole to clinch their second win of the season with the Brumos Racing 911 GT3 Cup in Laguna Seca. After an alternator problem and twelfth place at the round nine in Millville, New Jersey (24 July), the title fight is still open.

British GT Championship: Richard Westbrook and David Ashburn win in Spa
At race five of ten in the British GT Championship on Belgium’s Spa circuit (9 July), reigning champion David Ashburn and teammate Richard Westbrook took home a hard-earned victory with Trackspeed’s 911 GT3 R. And at race six on the same day, the British team also looked on track to win until tyre damage in lap nine knocked the leading Westbrook out of contention. Tim Bridgman and Gregor Fisken in the sister Trackspeed Porsche finished second with a 0.88-second gap.

Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup: Kuba Giermaziak claims first win for Poland
After a turbulent rain race, Kuba Giermaziak celebrated his maiden win in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup on the Hungaroring near Budapest (31 July), and notched up the first victory for a Polish and East European driver in the 19-year history of the world’s fastest international one-make series. With his 450 hp Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, the VERVA Racing pilot pulled clear of second-placed Jeroen Bleekemolen from the Netherlands by an extraordinary 18.783 seconds. Third place was enough for Britain’s Sean Edwards to snatch the points’ lead from René Rast, who was forced to retire with technical troubles. Giermaziak is the 50th pilot to win from the 201 races contested so far.

Carrera Cup Asia: Rodolfo Avila takes the lead in the championship
Two premieres at the race weekend in China’s Ordos: First, Keita Sawa stormed to his first win ever in the prestigious championship at round five (9 July) in the 911 GT3 Cup run by LKM Racing. At race six (10 July), Rodolfo Avila from Macau clinched his first victory of the season in a GT3 Cup of the Jebsen team and shunted Alexandre Imperatori off the top of the points’ table.

IFX Carrera Cup Australia: “Kiwi” driver Daniel Gaunt unbeatable in Townsville
There was no answer to New Zealander Daniel Gaunt’s charge at the third of seven race weekends of the IFX Carrera Cup Australia in Townsville. The ‘Kiwi’ won all three championship races (9/10 July), with the win from race one also marking his first in the Australian series. In the meantime, with two second places, Johnny Reid swept past Craig Baird to take first place in the drivers’ classification.

Carrera Cup France: Kévin Estre is still the man to beat
With six straight wins – the latest at the “Endurance” race as part of the Porsche Festival on the Circuit Bugatti du Mans (17 July), 22-year-old Kévin Estre (AS Events team) is the dominant force in the Carrera Cup France. In the Gentleman class, reigning champion Henry Hassid secured another victory.

Carrera Cup Italia: Alessandro Balzan extends lead with another win
At race eight of the Carrera Cup Italia in Mugello (31 July), points’ leader Alessandro Balzan (Ebimotors – Centro Porsche Varese) beat his pursuer Vito Postiglione after 14 laps by 1.8 seconds. Race nine went to Massimo Monti (Antonelli Motorsport) after 16 laps, narrowly beating Alessandro Bonacini by 1.5 seconds. Balzan turned the fastest race laps at both meetings and with 133 points holds a clear lead over Postiglione (90 points).

Carrera Cup Japan: Hideto Yasuoka proving unbeatable
Hideto Yasuoka, the young driver of the Garmin Porsche squad, again demonstrated his skill at races six and seven at Sportsland Sugo (30/31 July). No sooner had the safety car left the track after a rainy start on Saturday, Yasuoka rocketed away to claim victory. When Sunday’s race was red-flagged after two collisions on the drying track, Yasuoka again lay in the lead and was awarded maximum points.

GT3 Cup Challenge Canada: Perry Bortolotti is the champion
The fight for the title in the GT3 Cup Challenge Canada has been decided after six races: With three victories to his credit, Perry Bortolotti (SpeedMerchants/Fiorano Racing) secured the title in the top ‘Platinum’ class. His main rival Marco Cirone won the two final races in Mosport (23/24 July), but was unable to catch Bortolotti. Shaun McKaigue won the Gold Cup, Robert Seitz the Silver trophy.

IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohama: McKenzie increases pressure on Cisneros
After two wins in Mosport (23/24 July), pursuer Tim McKenzie (Kelly Moss Motorsports) trails points’ leader Henrique Cisneros (NGT Motorsport) by 23 points (victory: 20 points). Cisneros came second in the Platinum class at both races. With two second places behind Eduardo Cisneros, 15-year-old Madison Snow defended his lead in the Gold Cup class.

Race notes: Roger Lago, John Goodacre and Jeff Bobik are the winners of the third race weekend of the GT3 Cup Challenge Australia in Eastern Creek (16/17 July). Lago remains in the lead. +++ Second place for Sabine Schmitz, Niclas Kentenich and Arno Klasen in a 911 GT3 R at round six of the Nuerburgring VLN Long Distance Championship (30 July). The fight for overall victory came to an early end after just 15 laps due to a mass collision involving slower vehicles.

Public Relations and Media
Oliver Hilger

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