First podium for Bentley in Blancpain Sprint Series

Double victory in the Silver Cup at Zolder.

Zolder, Belgium / Spielberg, Austria - Bentley Team HTP´s double duty this weekend was rewarded with two finishes, two class victories and a good amount of points. The team campaigned two Bentley Continental GT3 in the second of the ADAC GT Masters at the Red Bull Ring in Austria and the third round of the Blancpain Sprint Series at Zolder in Belgium. Maximilian Buhk (D)/Vincent Abril (F) claimed the first two podium positions for Bentley in the Sprint Series and finished third and second at Zolder, Jules Szymkowiak (NL)/Tom Dillmann (F) scored a double victory in the Silver Cup reserved for young drivers. In the ADAC GT Masters, Luca Stolz (D)/Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL) finished fifth at Red Bull Ring.

Our two podium finishes are a top result.

Maximilian Buhk

"Our drivers and the entire team showed a great performance in Belgium and in Austria“, Bentley Team HTP team principal Norbert Brückner was pleased with the results. "In both series we drove strong races and we are satisfied with our first podium finish in the Sprint Series and another good point haul in ADAC GT Masters.“

Silverware and champagne at Zolder Buhk/Abril managed to convert their great speed in Belgium into podium finishes. The Bentley drivers built the foundation of their good weekend with a third place in the qualifying race. In Sunday’s feature race, Abril fell back at the beginning, but soon recovered and worked back. Halfway through the race, Buhk took over from Abril and finally secured second place.

In the second Bentley Continental GT3, Tom Dillmann made a strong debut at Bentley Team HTP. Together with Jules Szymkowiak, the young Frenchman finished eighth in the qualifying race. The result in the feature race was even better, when they saw the chequered flag in sixth position. In both races, Szymkowiak/Dillmann won the Silver Cup reserved for Young Drivers, giving Bentley Team HTP four class wins in a row.

Good points in ADAC GT Masters at Red Bull Ring

Points for the Bentley Team HTP in Austria Things were more difficult for Bentley Team HTP at the scenic Red Bull Ring in Austria. Expectations were high for the two races in Styria, after the Bentley took a maiden win at the series season opener back in April. Luca Stolz/Jeroen Bleekemolen in car 7 drove a strong race in Sunday’s second heat and finished fifth after starting from P12 on the grid. They gained a bonus and got points for fourth place, as the race winning Lamborghini was a guest entry and not eligible for championship points. In the first race, Stolz/Bleekemolen finished 13th after a small off during the race.

In Car 8, Clemens Schmid (A) and Fabian Hamprecht (D) collected good points and finished eighth in race two in their Bentley Continental GT3. In the first race, Schmid/Hamprecht retired after a technical issue.

Driver quotes

Maximilian Buhk: "I am happy with our success in Zolder. Our two podium finishes are a top result. In the qualifying race we only nearly missed the second place. In the feature race, Vincent has been very strong in the first stint. I pushed in the second half of the race and successfully held off a BMW.“

Vincent Abril: "I am happy with second place in the feature race. Unfortunately, I made contact with a Ferrari at the start of the race. I’m sorry about that, but that’s racing. In the season opening race, we were the ones who were a bit unlucky with contacts.“

Jules Szymkowiak: "With sixth place and two wins in the Silver Cup, the weekend ended very well for us. Already in the qualifying race we had a good chance to finish sixth, but a I lost grip and that unfortunately enabled to competitors to pass me.“

Tom Dillmann: "My first race weekend in GT3 racing went really well. Jules and I had a solid weekend in Zolder. I hope I can continue this progress in the next races.“

Jeroen Bleekemolen: "We were very good in the second race. However, it was difficult to attack this weekend, which I had not expected after the good result at the season opener. But when you finished fifth after starting from twelfth, you can be satisfied. The points we got today are very important, because when you chase the championship, you consistently have to score points.“

Luca Stolz: “Considering after qualifying we weren’t where we expected to be, fifth place is a good achievement. At the beginning of the weekend we lacked some pace, but we worked hard, fought back and it paid off. We had a small mistake during the first race which cost points, but the second race was very good.“

Clemens Schmid: "During race one we unfortunately had a technical issue in the opening laps, but it was nice to get some points in the second race. Our start and our pit stop was not perfect, but we can be quite happy with the result.“

Fabian Hamprecht: “At the start of the second race there was a slow car and some contacts in the first corner which I could avoid, but that cost some positions. I fought back and was quickly in the top-ten. We then lost a few seconds at the pit stop, so finishing eighth was nice.”

Bentley Team HTP


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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Event Zolder
Sub-event Sunday post-race
Track Zolder
Drivers Jeroen Bleekemolen , Tom Dillmann , Maximilian Buhk , Jules Szymkowiak , Vincent Abril
Teams Team HTP
Article type Race report