Nürburgring Saturday Booklet – Sportscar365
*** Arthur Rougier won the inaugural Fanatec Esports GT Series title for Emil Frey Racing with a second place – and a Pro class victory – in the hour-long race that took place on Saturday night in the paddock of the Nürburgring. WRT’s Ryuichiro Tomita won the race, becoming the first Silver Cup driver to win the overall standings. The Japanese rider edged the WRT by one point behind Silver Cup esports leader Rinaldi Racing. Results / Ranking
*** Fanatec point increase for Nürburgring esports race extends WRT’s AWS Silver Cup powered Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe points lead over Emil Frey Racing to 2.5 points, after both teams are arrivals in Germany only half a point apart.
*** Esports results have changed little in the overall GTWC Europe team standings, with WRT still holding a whopping 62 point lead over AKKA-ASP. However, Rougier’s victory meant third-placed Emil Frey moved closer to ASP by three points. The Frenchman’s sim racing exploits have so far contributed nine points to the Swiss team’s actual total.
*** Oman Racing is set to end the Endurance Cup season, according to Ahmad Al Harthy who told Sportscar365 that he is currently evaluating different series for a return to full season racing next year: “We are looking at different options,” said the 2019 Pro-Am champion. “Hopefully by January or February we will know where we can go. He works a lot with partners and sponsors. Right now, the plan is to focus this weekend.
*** Teams from five different manufacturers have won the last five GTWC Europe races at the Nürburgring covering both the Endurance Cup and the Sprint Cup. Audi, Mercedes-AMG, Lamborghini, Aston Martin and more recently Porsche have won all five SRO GT3 races on the German circuit since the 2018 Sprint round.
*** Similarly, the last five polemans of GTWC Europe at the Nürburgring also come from different brands: Mercedes-AMG, Lexus, Audi, Lamborghini and Porsche.
*** Attempto Racing boss Arkin Aka says he has yet to decide where his team will compete next year, but is open to watching different series as well as GTWC Europe. Aka seems dissatisfied with how difficult Attempto’s Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo is compared to the WRT’s this season. “I’m really open to everyone,” he told Sportscar365. “I have to speak with some manufacturers. I like the competition here, but you can also use the DTM as preparation for Le Mans when it comes to GT3. I do not know.”
*** Aka has confirmed that Mattia Drudi will continue in the No.66 Audi Attempto for the Sprint Cup Final after joining that participation for Brands Hatch last weekend. The Italian’s co-driver has not yet been confirmed, while Alex Aka and Dennis Marschall will drive the No.99.
*** Emil Frey was having “a lot of trouble” with the setup of his # 163 Lamborghini at the start of the weekend, but is now in the right window, according to Giacomo Altoe. “We started to check the car and found something, so we went the other way with the tuning philosophy and in pre-qualifying we found something,” said the Italian driver. “We were in the top six in pre-qualifying which doesn’t mean anything but at least we have improved.”
*** Dinamic Motorsport Porsche driver Romain Dumas received a reprimand and a behavioral caution point for incident liability after colliding with Oman Racing’s Aston during free practice. Both cars left the track after contact at Turn 2.
*** There are no date conflicts between the 18 events of the GTWC Europe and America 2022 calendars, demonstrating one of SRO’s main goals for its regional series. Asian and Australian times are expected to be announced separately at a later date.
*** Next year’s Paul Ricard 1000 km fall on the same weekend as the third round of the DTM, while the Sprint Cup and DTM overlap twice. Seven drivers skipped this weekend’s race due to a clash with the Germany-based series.
*** In addition to announcing the GTWC Europe and America schedules, SRO Motorsports Group also unveiled the dates for the GT4 European Series for 2022. The championship will continue to support all rounds of the GTWC Europe Endurance Cup, as well as ‘a Sprint Cup match that has been moved from Zandvoort to Misano.
*** A sixth manufacturer is about to join the GT2 formula, according to the founder and CEO of SRO, Stéphane Ratel. The category recently received a boost from the arrival of Brabham Automotive with the BT63. “We have assurance of another brand to come,” Ratel said. “So it’s obvious: GT2 will work. It is simply the right cost / performance ratio.
*** The GT1 Sports Club will organize its first event of the year at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, on the Monday following the end of the Endurance Cup season. The non-competitive series for exotic hypercars is managed by Curbstone Events and sits alongside the European GT2 series under the umbrella of the GT Sports Club.
*** Ratel is interested in organizing a GT4 endurance race in Europe next year, with a “correct” duration such as 12 hours in mind. He revealed that plans were made to hold such an event in Imola in 2020 before they ultimately failed. “It has been a long time since we last competed in a GT4 endurance event,” said Ratel. “I really hope that we are going to release something: it is part of our projects.
*** Following the confirmation of the GT3 and GT4 calendars, it is understood that the 2022 calendar for the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe is expected to be unveiled next week.
*** Qualifying for the 3 Hours of the Nürburgring will start at 8:30 am CEST (2:30 am EST) on Sunday morning with three qualifying sessions of 15 minutes. As usual, the average scores from these sessions will determine the final qualifying times.
*** The fourth round of the Endurance Cup season will start at 2:45 p.m. CEST (8:45 a.m. EST) tomorrow afternoon. Live streaming is available on the series website and GT World. David Addison, John Watson and Gemma Scott make up the broadcast team.
2022 GT4 European Series Calendar
April 8-10 – Monza
June 3-5 – Paul Ricard
July 28-31 – Spa-Francorchamps
2-4 Sep – Hockenheim
Sep 30-Oct 2 – Barcelona