They are the champions - World Champions!
This evening a French team is FIA GT1 world champion! A young squad full of talent and enthusiastic squad which has given its all right till the very end. In 2009, it was the European GT3 Champion. Last year it was runner-up in the FIA GT1 World Championship and this season HEXIS AMR has won a world title for which four teams were still in the running before the final 60-minutes’ racing got under way.
The overall situation didn’t look too good on Saturday evening after the qualifying event. Neither of the two HEXIS AMR DB9 Aston Martins had scored a point. No. 3 finished eighth and no. 4 was only fourteenth. They started Sunday’s race from these unfavourable places on the grid. Clivio Piccione and Stef Dusseldorp fought their way up to third, and in the second car Christian Hohenadel and Andrea Piccini snatched a crucial fifth place. The Italo-German duo finished third in the drivers’ world championship ratings.
It would take a whole book to tell the story of the ups and downs of the Argentinean round! All the more so as the title battle was decided not only in Potrero de los Funes, but also in the twenty hotly-disputed races in nine countries on three continents. To really see what happened and relive the thrills and spills of the round that decided it all on Sunday, go to the GT1 TV site where the race is available on streaming – www.gt1world.com/gt1tv . Today, a phrase sums up everything: despite all the traps on a layout like no other in the world and despite the burning determination of their rivals, the drivers and staff of the HEXIS AMR team have pulled off an impossible feat – they are the WORLD CHAMPIONS!
Here are the first comments from team manager, Philippe Dumas: “It’s totally unbelievable, totally fantastic. The whole paddock seems pleased that we’re the FIA GT1 World Champions. That means we must deserve it! We’ve followed in the footsteps of a great team, Vitaphone, which enjoyed a long reign. The suspense lasted right down to the wire. I’m still thinking of all the stress you have to cope with, as in my position you not only have to look after the sporting and technical side, but also a whole host of other details – the budget, the strategy for the future of the team, the daily round, etc. The only thing that keeps us going is the hope of results like this one. But I have to admit that yesterday I was feeling pretty downcast because I didn’t see how things could turn out well - but you have to keep on believing that they will. What we’re experiencing this evening is simply magic!”
The heroes will take off for France today, Monday, at midday local time (16h00 in France). We will come back to their incredible saga in a newsletter in the near future.