News and quotes 09.00 to 11.00hrs The saga continues: the battle for the lead in the hours 17 to 19 remained just as thrilling as it had been throughout the race. 22 times the lead has changed, now, and currently, the Phoenix-Racing Audi R8 LMS...
News and quotes 09.00 to 11.00hrs
The saga continues: the battle for the lead in the hours 17 to 19 remained just as thrilling as it had been throughout the race. 22 times the lead has changed, now, and currently, the Phoenix-Racing Audi R8 LMS (#99) is back in the lead, with Manthey-Racing's Porsche 911 GT3-RSR following in second. In the past two hours, Timo Bernhard, Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas and Marcel Tiemann succeeded in reducing the lead of the Audi by six to eight seconds per lap. Meanwhile, the second Manthey-Porsche (#2) and the Abt-Audi (#97) also continued on the same lap as the two leading cars, with five more hours to go. While fifth and sixth positions still were held by the Porsches of Mamerow (#19) and Alzen (#18). The Volkswagen works squad, however, had to cope with a retirement. In the Pflanzgarten section, Wolfgang Kaufmann (#17) crashed into the rear of Kristian Nagele's BMW 330i (#80) and due to the incident, the race came to a sudden end for both cars. At the same time, the VW Scirocco #118 keeps on delivering in great style. At 11:00hrs. Jimmy Johansson, Florian Gruber, Nicki Thiim and Martin Karlhofer held the great 13th position in the overall standings.
# 1 (Bernhard / Lieb / Dumas / Tiemann) Porsche 911 GT3-RSR
9:39hrs: No driver swap, Marc Lieb goes out for a second consecutive stint.
10:50hrs: Driver swap at Manthey racing. Now, Timo Bernhard enters the cockpit of the Porsche 911 GT3-RSR to replace Marc Lieb. Marc Lieb: "The double-stint was really tough. "We have to push extremely hard to match their pace. On the other hand we lose a lot of time whenever we come in for a refuelling stop. That's truly frustrating. But our motto is: Now more than ever!"
# 18 (Alzen / Bert / Arnold / Mies) Porsche 997 GT3 Cup
Uwe Alzen: "All our drivers proved to be truly disciplined. Everything is running smoothly. For us, finishing the race is of major importance. I know that there still is a long way to go but we absolutely want to secure a top-ten finish. The Mamerow-Porsche is fractions faster than our's, therefore, we won't be able to beat them, under normal circumstances."
# 19 (Mamerow / Bergmeister / Franchitti / Mamerow) Porsche 911 GT3 Cup S
9:59hrs: Chris Mamerow takes over from Marino Franchitti. Franchitti: "Despite the numerous yellow-flag periods during my stint we succeeded in extending our lead over the Alzen-Porsche. Now, in my third stint, I felt really good in the car."
# 97 (Abt / Hemroulle / Kaffer / Luhr) Audi R8 LMS
Pierre Kaffer: "We've set ourselves the goal to make it to the podium and to realise this goal, we have to push as hard as possible, now. In the opening stages we may have opted for a too conservative approach and therefore lost too much ground compared to the front-runners. Our car has been running trouble-free, so far."
# 99 (Basseng / Fassler / Rockenfeller / Stippler) Audi R8 LMS
9:20hrs: The R8 comes in for a scheduled pit stop. Frank Stippler. "Marc will remain in the cockpit. We will do double stints, from now on."
# 117 (Sainz / Simon / Depping / Kaufmann) VW Scirocco
Wolfgang Kaufmann: "Quite obviously, I'm extremely disappointed. I went over the blind crest in the Pflanzgarten section at 200kph -- and all of a sudden I saw another car (#80) standing on the track. I tried my best to decelerate and avoid hitting it but I had no chance at all. The impact was hard but I'm okay - more or less. I'm really sorry for our crew as they did a perfect job and would have deserved a good result."