Mike Rockenfeller - Spa victory Mike Rockenfeller celebrated his fourth GT2 win in six FIA GT Championship races this season with a dominant performance in the Proximus 24 Hours of Spa. Rockenfeller, of Monaco, teamed with fellow Porsche factory...
Mike Rockenfeller - Spa victory
Mike Rockenfeller celebrated his fourth GT2 win in six FIA GT Championship races this season with a dominant performance in the Proximus 24 Hours of Spa. Rockenfeller, of Monaco, teamed with fellow Porsche factory drivers Marc Lieb of Ludwigsburg, Germany, and Lucas Luhr of Monaco for a six-lap margin of victory in the 24-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium.
Lieb qualified the No. 66 GruppeM Racing Porsche 996 GT3 RSR second in the GT2 class with a lap time of two minutes 24.5 seconds on the 6.968-kilometre road course. Lieb drove the first double stint of the race, taking the class lead in the second hour. Rockenfeller and Luhr followed, and the three held the class lead for most of the race.
They were slowed by a brake vibration during the eighth hour, but held the class lead despite a long pitstop to repair the right-front suspension and change brake discs and pads. In the 11th hour, Luhr spun on oil dropped on track by another car and backed into a barrier. The team lost the GT2 lead during a pitstop to change the car's exhaust and rear bumper, but Luhr quickly regained it. Rockenfeller encountered a broken throttle cable in hour 17 and dropped back to second while the cable was replaced. Lieb regained first in class just past the 20-hour mark and the trio held fast to finish first in GT2 by six laps and seventh overall.
Because they led the class at six and 12 hours, Lieb and Rockenfeller earned maximum series points (20), giving them a 30-point lead in the GT2 championship. They will carry 75 kilograms of extra ballast at the next race because of their success.
"It was quite exciting to win!" Rockenfeller said. "The other [team] car crashed quite early and had to stop for two hours to repair the car. I feel bad, it's not how you want to win the race. I thought we could just relax and bring the victory home, but that didn't happen. The weather was a bit exhausting and it's very dark at Spa during the night. Other than that, it was a normal 24-hour race. It was my first time at Spa, so I'm happy with the result."