The highlight of the season at the Nürburgring - the Opel 6-hour race
Exciting racing thriller in typical Eifel weather.
After the last race was won by the Frikadelli Porsche, the expectations of this 6-hour race were not only great for the team with the meatball on the Porsche. It was only clear: An Opel would probably not leave this 6-hours race as the overall winner, but in the top classes were too many potential winners who drive the lightning-fast Cup Opel around the outside mirrors.
The 6-hour race is the season's highlight for the VLN community, off the beaten track 24h race (However, this is not included in the VLN scoring). At halftime of the VLN championship, the team (331) led by drivers Christoph Breuer and Elmar Degener on a Dunlop-equipped Audi TT RS in the SP3T class.
The practice, on a partly sunny Saturday morning, was won by the Phoenix Audi with a 8:04, 654. At the wheel is Frank Stippler.
Back on the racetrack. NAfter a BOP discussion for a break in the last race, the ROWE SLS was back in the 6-hour race (BOP -5 kg!). In training, the gullwing came in place 2. On 3 the winners of the last race, the team around Klaus Abbelen and Sabine Schmitz.
Striezel Stuck, of all people, who wanted to start with the number 15, an Audi R8 LMS, together with his sons, put the training session in the gravel. Shortly before the end of the training session, the race for the DMSB sports president was history before the start of the race. Striezel flew off in the area of the Hohenrain chicane, the R8 suffered severe damage in the process - a start no longer possible.
The start of the 6-Hunt through the Eifel
Just in time for the start at 12 o'clock it was already heavily cloudy and the sky should open its locks for the last third of the race. So far it had announced a storm warning. After the first hour of racing, the first raindrops could already be seen on the road. Sometimes more sometimes less. But not a problem for the professionals on the Nordschleife.
After four laps, Frank Stippler took the lead with just under 30 seconds and after six laps the ROWE team rang the time of the pit stops for the top teams. Jan Seyffahrt started the race and after 10 laps he was up Dunlop driving ROWE SLS AMG GT3 in the lead.
After only two hours, the race of the H&R Spezialfedern BMW Z4 GT3 with Uwe Alzen, Wlazik and Kentenich was over. Starting from 8th place and a training time of 8: 09,855, the race did not go beyond 11 laps, then an engine failure put an end to the wild drift.
After there were already brief shudders on individual sections of the route, it was at 15:30 p.m. - after 3.5 hours of driving time, then time for all teams to head for the pit lane. It was clearly raining. The tire changes brought the ROWE team an advantage above all. With cut Dunlop intermediates instead of rain tires, they really played poker there. In an interview with track announcer Patrick Simon, Lance David Arnold emphasized that the Dunlop Intermediate was the perfect choice and worked just as perfectly.
After 26 laps and 4 hours of driving time, the ROWE Mercedes SLS 1 Minute 50 was ahead of second-placed Manthey Porsche.
The next victim of the racing god was the number 8 Audi R22 LMS. For Werner, Mies and Winkelhock - starting from position 4, the race was over after 4 hours and 15 minutes.
Shortly after 16: 30h, the top teams switched back to slick tires, but the announced weather chaos did not happen for the time being.
Half an hour later - so it is in the Eifel region - the command returned, the rain was back. And now it was slowly becoming a lottery. Bet on slicks and hope for a quick end to the rain? Or rain tires? The decision was difficult.
The Wochenspiegel-Porsche turned in the wake of the weather caprices in the Mercedes-Arena, but was able to continue its journey. It went quickly - shortly before 17pm and an hour before the end of the race, the Frikadelli Porsche came into the pit lane and immediately disappeared into the pits. New problems with the petrol pressure forced them to give up.
The Dunlop frosted ROWE team did everything right, including the second and third rain lottery in this race. With cut intermediates, the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 with start number #7 was clearly in the lead.
And after last year's success - it was again this year that the Rowe team with the starting number 7 took home the success of the Opel 6-hour race.
Congratulations to Team ROWE and the successful drivers: Jan Seyffahrt, Nico Bastian and Lance David Arnold.
In 2nd place - the Audi R8 LMS “G-Drive by Phonix” started from pole position with Frank Stippler, Marc Basseng and Roman Rusinov!
And happier third was another Phoenix Audi R8 LMS. Start number # 5 with Harold Primat, Christopher Haase and “again” Frank Stippler!