GT World Cup: Vanthoor declared winner after massive airborne crash

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GT World Cup: Vanthoor declared winner after massive airborne crash
Jonathan Noble
By: Jonathan Noble
Nov 20, 2016, 6:48 AM

Laurens Vanthoor was amazingly declared the winner of the FIA GT World Cup race at Macau after being lucky to walk away from a massive crash that stopped the race for good.

Safety car on track
Edoardo Mortara, Audi Sport Team WRT Audi R8 LMS
Start action, Laurens Vanthoor, Audi Sport Team WRT Audi R8 LMS leads
Laurens Vanthoor, Audi Sport Team WRT Audi R8 LMS
Race action
Laurens Vanthoor, Audi Sport Team WRT Audi R8 LMS; Earl Bamber, Manthey Racing Porsche 911 GT3-R; Kévin Estre, Manthey Racing Porsche 911 GT3-R
Laurens Vanthoor, Audi Sport Team WRT Audi R8 LMS
Maro Engel, Mercedes-AMG Driving Academy Mercedes-AMG GT3
Earl Bamber, Manthey Racing Porsche 911 GT3-R

The bizarre twist came after Vanthoor led the race away in his Audi from a red flag restart – which had been brought out on the third lap after Ricky Capo had damaged the barriers with a crash at Fishermen’s Bend.

But a pursuing Earl Bamber drafted past Vanthoor on the run down to Mandarin Bend and slotted into the lead.

Behind him, Vanthoor clipped the kerb on the inside and that was enough to unsettle the car. He lost control on the exit of the corner and smashed into the barriers on the left hand side.

Then, as his Audi slid sideways, air got underneath it and flipped it upside down – before it landed on its roof and slid along the track for several hundred metres.

After coming to a halt, Vanthoor was able to get out of the car unaided although the race was immediately stopped.

With the time limit having been reached, officials decided not to restart the event – with countback meaning that Vanthoor was declared the winner after the results were declared on lap four.

Bamber took second place on the road, but was handed a five-second penalty for having squeezed Maro Engel in to the wall on the start – which dropped him down the order to fourth.

That penalty meant Bamber’s Porsche teammate Kevin Estre finished second, ahead of with Engel in third.

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