GRT Lamborghini dominates Brands Hatch Qualifying Race


Starting in first is obviously the best approach when you race at Brands Hatch, and Mirko Bortolotti and Christian Engelhardt just confirmed this with some extra speed in a green to checkered win in the Blancpain GT Sprint Cup Qualifying Race for Grässer Racing Team and the No. 63 car.

Once the green flag was waved the leading No. 63 GRT Lamborghini secured its place while a bit behind the No. 26 Sainteloc Audi had a spin in the middle of Paddock Hill bend. Another Audi to have problems was the No. 1 WRT car having a puncture in the right rear tire, limping back to the pits from the front pack.

During the whole first part before the pit window, the No. 63 GRT Lamborghini opened a comfortable gap of 5 seconds to the No. 98 ROWE BMW, with the third placed No. 19 GRT Lamborghini being way behind. Although the pit stops didn't give the lead for the ROWE car, it reduced the gap to the lead GRT machine.

In between this, Paddock Hill Bend was the scene for another spinning Audi with 40 minutes of racing, being in fact the same No. 26 car, although this time it was induced by a tap in the right rear corner. A lap later the No. 8 M-SPORT Bentley gave a full speed tap in the back of the backmarker No. 89 AKKA-ASP Mercedes, sending the car to a spin and a front impact in the barriers at the main straight. The car stopped on track blocking most of the road at the entrance of Paddock Hill Bend and Marcel Fässler had to go with the No. 5 WRT Audi to the gravel avoid more damage than a destroyed diffuser, and after the mayhem the full course yellow was immediately called, with the race returning to green with around ten minutes to go.

The No. 63 GRT Lamborghini and the No. 98 ROWE BMW were opening the gaps and becoming isolated again, while the No. 19 GRT Lamborghini got the mirrors full with the No. 88 AKKA-ASP Mercedes and the No. 99 ROWE BMW, and Ezequiel Perez Companc's mission turned from chasing Markus Palttala to holding Felix Serralles as he was demonstrating he had conditions to overtake.

In the end, Markus Palttala found it quite hard to bring the disadvantage to Christian Engelhardt down, so the No. 63 GRT Lamborghini just had to cruise until the finish. The No. 42 Strakka McLaren won in the Silver Cup, while Pro-Am Cup honors went to the No. 333 Rinaldi Ferrari.