The FIA honoured the 2011 FIA GT1 World Champions during the FIA Gala in New Delhi this evening, the first time this prestigious event has been held in India. Surrounded by the other champions from world motorsport, Germany’s Michael Krumm and Lucas Luhr were crowned GT1 World Driver Champions after an exciting second season.
Driving for the British-based JR Motorsports team, Krumm and Luhr secured nine top-three finishes, including four race wins, in their Nissan GT-R. Their nearest rivals, Darren Turner and Stefan Mücke, driving an Aston Martin DB9 for the Young Driver AMR team, won the penultimate race of the season in Beijing to take the challenge all the way to the final round in Argentina.
However, an accident during Pre-Qualifying meant the Aston Martin was damaged beyond repair. Turner and Mücke were forced to sit out the final two races of the season, but they had done enough to secure the Vice Champions position. Third place in the Championship went to the reigning FIA GT3 European Champion Christian Hohenadel and his co-driver Andrea Piccini. The German/Italian pairing, driving a Hexis AMR Aston Martin DB9, scored one race win in Germany and kept up a consistent challenge throughout the season to finish in the top three as the final chequered flag was waved.
Michael Krumm said:
“It’s been an incredible year and only now that I have been presented with the award for winning the FIA GT1 World Championship Drivers’ title has it really sunk in. The season didn’t start so well, but then to win four races really put us in a great position to secure the title at the last round in Argentina. I have to thank everyone in the JRM team, Nissan, NISMO and of course Lucas, for all they have done to make this achievement possible.”
Lucas Luhr said:
“Receiving the award for winning the FIA GT1 World Championship for Drivers is a perfect end to what has been a fantastic season. The Nissan GT-R has been strong at most of the circuits we’ve been to this year and we won more races than any other team. Of course, this gave us the advantage. I therefore must thank Nissan, NISMO and JRM for providing us with such a great car and Michael for doing such a great job.”
Hexis AMR secured the World GT1 Team title with its Aston Martin DB9 cars, adding the FIA GT1 World crown to the FIA GT3 European title that the French team won in 2009. It was a nail-biting end to the season, with Hexis AMR, which had led the points for the first half of the season, lying in third place ahead of the final round in Argentina. An incredible performance by their two cars, driven by Christian Hohenadel, Andrea Piccini, Stef Dusseldorp and Clivio Piccione, saw the team take 40 points in the last race of the year, to finish three points ahead of JR Motorsports and four points in front of Young Driver AMR.
Philippe Dumas, Team Manager, Hexis AMR said:
“It has been a fantastic year and to become FIA GT1 World Champions means so much to everyone at Hexis. We may be a small team, but we are extremely well organised and very professional. We all share in the highs and lows, so for all of us this is a great achievement. We went into the last round at San Luis hoping to finish in the top three, but everyone worked so hard and we got the result we needed to win the World Championship. I’d like to thank everyone at Hexis for their dedication, their courage and extraordinary team spirit, exceeding their limits on so many occasions. And special thanks must go to our pit-stop crews, who are truly World Champions now! Our thanks also to Aston Martin, to SRO for organising such a great Championship, and to the FIA. To receive the World Championship trophy is the highlight of my career and we will hope to defend our title in 2012 with the new McLaren.”