GT1 World Championship: analysis season finale in San Luis
Surprises, chaos and a big fat anticlimax characterized the last weekend of a series whose future is still uncertain. But at least were worthy champions will be crowned.
Even before the first race of the weekend the air was out of the actually so exciting battle for the drivers' title. For already in training on Friday sat Stefan Mücke the Aston Martin DBR9 hard enough in the walls of the demanding track at Potrero de los Funes, that the car could not be made fit for the rest of the weekend. And then Lukas Luhr took pole at the first visit to the track and despite 35kg success ballast, it was clear that he and Michael Krumm would not let the title company. This is maybe not the worst performance, because a title for Stefan Mücke was, after the dirty revenge action at Silverstone, for which he would have deserved a lock, had an unpleasant aftertaste.
However, the surprise of the weekend made his behind the distance traveled on the pole Nissan Duo, and in the form of red Team China Corvette, in the Dutch team manager Patrick Selleslagh two young GT-inexperienced compatriots continued: Yelmer Buurman, the last Formula occurred mainly in the Super League in appearance, and Francesco Pastorelli, the hitherto internationally unknown little brother of the Lamborghini drivers Nicky. Fresh blood and a thriving Corvette united to a first unbeatable combination.
At the start of the qualifying race Buurman was back down in the first turn even before the Nissan. And since Krumm and Luhr could take any unnecessary risks, Pastorelli won the race after the driver change home and secured the pole position for the main race on Sunday. The victory was a sensation, and was but slightly below, for a strong and above all intelligent performance, Michael Krumm and Lucas Luhr secured the championship.
As with mosquito and Turner had to watch the closest pursuer, presented the six points for second place, to make the already small mathematical chance of Winkelhock / Basseng, Hohenadel / Piccini and Enge / Müller naught. While Michael Krumm turned the lap of honor, big emotions were observed at Lucas Luhr. The 32-year-old German has indeed been countless important sports car races (including two class victory at Le Mans) and some titles (including ALMS) won, but an FIA World Championship title again but has a special value. Even for the 41-year-old two-time SuperGT champion Krumm it may be the biggest success of his career.
Earned the two and their team this success all: four wins and five other podiums are in a series with success ballast not easy to achieve and demonstrate the consistently good performance throughout the season. Especially in San Luis to drive with extra weight on poles and rank 2, reinforces the strength of the duo. Also, the Nissan GT-R has proven to be a good all-rounder, who may well go on all road types.
In the second race of the weekend, the championship race, did the two go from second on the grid of an attack on the win and the team title, after all, JR Motorsports was not far away with the six points on Saturday, even here the Young Driver- Team wangle the title, that was decimated on a cart.
But the attack was stopped early when namely at the start of the main race Chaos broke out: While the red Corvette once again drove vornweg, behind it was the place for Luhr, Enrique Bernoldi (Sumo Power Nissan) and Dominik Schwager (All-Inkl.com Lamborghini ) too tight - Bernoldi was caught in the middle, so in turn the rest of the Young Driver-Aston Martin turned innocent Luhr order. De turned twice around its own axis and was able to continue, while two other Lamborghini were involved in the crash.
And the confusion continued: after the double spin to the end of the field like was to find moments later at the head of Tomas Enge in the Young Driver-DBR9. While the majority of the pilots apparently emanated from a safety car period, he moved past all competitors - for the team championship a crucial situation!
The safety car period came really - but only a few moments later. It lasted until just before the pit stop window. And shortly afterwards finally unleashed a decision of the Race Direction: Tight and Alex Müller, who had now taken over the cockpit, got a drive through penalty. Although no safety car signs had yet been shown, but a yellow flag indicated the overtaking.
For a moment, the second title seemed to fall to the JR Motorsport Nissan team; but also Peter Dumbreck had to settle for a penalty, because mate Richard Westbrook had made the same mistake as Tomas Enge, albeit on a smaller scale. And so the remaining sequential JRM Nissan and the Young Driver-Aston Martin two points found in a battle to the final again.
In leadership was after the penalties and an overtaking maneuver against the last Lamborghini DKR team - surprise! - Again the red Corvette from Buurman / Pastorelli. And finally, should be the deciding factor for the championship: because for much of the season DKR and the team China only one Corvette had used before there were some shifts, they are not entitled to earn points for the team title.
Therefore fell to the 25 points for winning the third place Hexis Aston Martin, the second Hexis car on rank 5 collected another 15 (instead of actually only 10) counters. This was the French team from nowhere Team Champion - three points in front of JR Motorsports and one more before the fellow of Young Driver AMR.
In this form, the title decision had probably imagined few people and also the commentators and team members were the special circumstances clearly with the two non-evaluation legitimate leaders just before the race - overwhelmed accordingly was Hexis Chef Phillipe Dumas after crossing the finish line. Also Hexis has always earned the title, they were the ones who overpowered early season competition as spectators with superior pit stops, which shows the great performance of the whole team.
The season of MarcVDS was once succinctly summarized in a situation as close to the end clashed both car and ended up in the tire stacks. Even otherwise, was of the four Ford GTs not much to see throughout the weekend, they did not seem to cope with the track characteristics. As for the old Aston Martins and Corvettes it could be the last race for the GT1 Fords - because MarcVDS rises from well known and a buyer will probably be hard to find. ...
And so to the next topic: the future of GT (1) -WM, meanwhile, is still uncertain. The anticipated announcement of Stephane Ratel did not exist, but Marcel ten Caat of planetlemans.com tweeted some notes on the current state of things: still had not been decided whether the World Cup next year will be contested with GT3 cars or at least replenished. The SRO still stuck in difficult negotiations and would be disappointed by premature announcements no potential partner.
As disappointing one could evaluate, however, that Ratel the future of the series outside Europe sees: only 3-4 races to be held in future in the "old world", this should be combined with other events such as this year with the ADAC GT Masters at the Sachsenring. Confirmed was the season opener in 2012 in the southern French Nogaro, where even the old FIA GT took a few times.
Meanwhile, time is pressing, because the private teams who need Ratel, may eventually need to make decisions and find sponsors, they travel around the world finance. The current deadline ends , according to FIA documents of the last meeting of the World Motor Sports Council on 30/11/2011, so in about three weeks.
So it's once again wait until early December hopefully finally clarity can be created ...
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