100th race win for Muhlner Motorsport Muhlner Motorsport achieve top results in ADAC GT Masters at Hockenheim: Winners on Saturday, third on Sunday Points lead in teams' championship, Bergmeister 2nd in drivers'...
100th race win for Muhlner Motorsport
Muhlner Motorsport achieve top results in ADAC GT Masters at Hockenheim: Winners on Saturday, third on Sunday
Points lead in teams' championship, Bergmeister 2nd in drivers' points.
Francorchamps / Hockenheim. The Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium based Muhlner Motorsport Team entered three Porsche 911 GT3 R (2010 model) in the third round of the ADAC GT Masters at the Hockenheim Ring.
The number 10 car was driven, as in Sachsenring, by the Bergmeister brothers, Tim and Jorg (both from Langenfeld). Dr. Jurgen Haring (Bubsheim) and Taki Konstantinou (Waldorfhaßlach) shared the number 11 METATOP Porsche and Frank Schmickler (Rosrath) shared the number 12 car with his third partner in as many races: after Kevin Estre in Oschersleben and Charlie Geipel at the Sachsenring he was joined this time by Supercup ace Rene Rast (Steyerberg) who had already shared a win with Tim Bergmeister in a Muhlner Porsche 911 GT3 Cup S on the Sunday race of the season opener at Oschersleben.
Free practice was difficult. The regulations require the use of the tyres used at the Oschersleben meeting and as these were well past their best, no meaningful set-up data could be gathered. In first qualifying, Tim Bergmeister, Schmickler and Konstantinou were only able to achieve 5th, 9th and 12th places of the 26 starters. In second qualifying, Jorg Bergmeister, Rast and Haring took 5th, 6th and 16th places. Rast had achieved a time good enough for 4th but this was disallowed as he had run wide on one corner and had all four wheels beyond the white line which marked the edge of the circuit.
The first race was over for Schmickler before he even had a chance to get going -- he was squeezed in the first corner, was able to continue but was then hit heavily from behind by an Audi, hard enough to push him into the car ahead and break his radiator. Tim Bergmeister moved up to 4th place and Konstantinou to an impressive 8th before slipping back to 10th just before handing over to Haring. The latter was not comfortable with the set-up of the METATOP Porsche and slipped back to 13th at the flag. Jorg Bergmeister rejoined the race in 3rd after the driver change and was then well positioned to profit from the mistakes of the leading two. First, the 2nd placed car was given a "stop & go" penalty for have made a too short pit-stop and then the leader received a "drive through" penalty for having run out over the white line on three successive laps. Thus the Bergmeister brothers were able to celebrate the 100th victory in the history of Muhlner Motorsport.
The Sunday race was run with the success ballast adjusted for Saturday's results -- this meant that Schmickler & Rast could remove 30kgs ballast but the Bergmeisters had to run with 30kg more. This enabled Rast in the WEG Porsche to run at the pace of the front runners and he moved up to P2. Jorg Bergmeister, now running 45kg heavier than Rast, followed him in 4th place. Haring in the METATOP Porsche now had the car handling to his liking, the set-up having been changed for the Sunday race, and was getting quicker lap for lap until a technical problem left him to roll to a halt without drive.
Team boss Renate-Carola Muhlner, on the pitwall and responsible for timing, tactics and strategy, proved her coolness and experience once again in calling Rast in early for his pitstop as he was being held up by a lapped Audi. Bergmeister on the other hand was kept out until the last possible moment, crossing the relevant timing line in the pit lane entry just 11 seconds before the end of the pit stop window.
As Rast in the WEG Porsche was not just held up by the lapped Audi but also involved in a collision with him, Schmickler rejoined in 3rd place. Tim Bergmeister, who took over from his brother 10 laps later was in striking distance of a podium placing. As a result of the collision with the Audi, the power steering failed on the WEG Porsche, allowing Bergmeister to move up to a further podium placing without a struggle. Schmickler on the other hand, continued to struggle with the heavy steering of the WEG Porsche but still managed to bring it home in 4th place.
"That was once again a successful weekend. Our 100th win on Saturday and a further podium on Sunday despite the additional success ballast were not really expected based on the speed we showed in qualifying. A shame that Frank & Rene's WEG Porsche results were spoiled by two Audis and that our two amateurs Jurgen and Taki failed to finish the second race with a drive train problem. We've now regained the lead in the teams' standings and Tim is now second in the drivers' points so the positives more than outweigh the negatives" summarized Bernhard Muhlner the ADAC GT Masters race weekend at Hockenheim.