DB Autosport has produced a well-earned victory in the gruelling 9 hour Proto Endurance in V de V at Aragon.
9 Hour V de V Proto Endurance: DB Autosport finally rewarded
DB Autosport has carefully constructed its way towards the front of the grid in V de V. The team from Bourgogne put everything they had into creating a strong line-up this season, composed of three Norma M20 FC, and today were rewarded by a well-earned victory, that of driver trio Marc-Antoine Dannielou, Damien Delafosse et Jens Petersen.
Starting on the front row the #22 car sat on the front row of the grid but lost out to the #21 machine which led a fantastic start to the race with the sister car hot on its tail and the #2 TFT Norma chasing the pair.
#21's hopes didn't get the team very far however, as during the second hour of the race, a small fire meant the prototype was immobilised inside the garage. The trio in car #22, Dannielou / Delafosse / Petersen, were thus gifted first place, despite a short moment of worry when the car ran over some remaining debris on track, causing the team to drop a few places and hand a provisional victory to the #2 machine of Vilarino / Ferté / Illiano. At the same time, TFT's #6 Norma were also promoted a place, moving Bazaud / Thirion / Caillon into second.
After several hours, the lead rotated once again and DB Autosport's #22 car found themselves at the head of the table, a position they then took to the chequered flag, which they passed with a two-lap gap to second place finishers TFT (#2).
The #6 machine received a double prize, rounding up the overall podium and winning the Prestige category - a category that saw no end of teams putting their heart and soul in this nine hour race. In the end it was all about consistency, and the second and third placed teams found themselves inside the top 5 overall finishers.
On the second step was IDEC Sport Racing's #15 Ligier JS 53 Evo 2, skillfully driven by Delomier / F. Da Rocha, and on the opposite step, the #50 Tatuus PY012 of Italian team Scuderia Bi & Bi, who came back from a low 16th position after the first hour.
Team-mates Rinaldi and Biffis were rewarded with a well-deserved podium finish, in a race that concluded with three different constructors in the top 3, and two team line-ups with only two drivers (#5 and #50).
A nine hour race was always going to be tough on the mechanics, and it claimed many victims, including the unfortunate #17 Ligier of IDEC Sport Racing, driven by Pat. Lafargue / Enjalbert, the #32 Norma of team CD Sport, entrusted to Foubert / Maulini / Bole Besançon, who ended up spending a near half-hour in the garage due to a puncture, and the #40 Norma of Equipe Palmyr, whose drivers Zollinger, Mondolot and Thuner were victims of continuous engine faults.
4 Hour GT / Touring car / LM P3 Endurance: First pole position for a Renault R.S. 01
The #45 Renault R.S. 01 of team AB Sport Auto grabbed a maiden pole position for the 4 hour race on pole position tomorrow. In the hands of teammates Thybaud / Jousse / Proust, the car will start ahead of Dodge Viper GT3 R #70, prepared by ANTeam and driven by Swiss duo B. Stucky / Yerly.
The second R.S. 01 of V de V / AB Sport Auto (#11) then stole third place from the #1 Ferrari 488 GT3 of team Visiom by just a tenth of a second, leaving teammates Pagny / Perrier / Bouvet in 4th place on the grid, and Italian entrants AF Corse in 5th, whose drivers Cordoni and Zanuttini race tomorrow in their #51 Ferrari 458 GT3.
In the S1 class, Solution F gave us a different result by setting the fastest time overall, better than that of GPC Motorsport's Vortex, who'd ruled the previous sessions. Finally, credit goes to trio Mallegol / Bachelier / Blank for producing the quickest lap time of the GTV2 runners, with their Porsche 991 GT3 Cup.
LM P3 - PFV: Tomlinson / Simpson never put a foot wrong
The #55 Ginetta G57 prepared by CWS Recycling and entrusted to Robertson and White was without a doubt the fastest car on track during qualifying, yet once again it was the unstoppable duo of Tomlinson / Simpson who placed the car on pole, after taking into account both driver's quickest times.
United behind the wheel of Ginetta G57 #57, the teammates remain unbeaten in qualifying this year. On the time-sheets, it was car n°13 of team Inter Europol Competition who stole the show in LM P3. Teammates Smiechowski and Hippe start ahead of rivals N'Race (#93), whose drivers Fontaine, Decultot and Perroy sit ahead of team Graff. Third on the grid, the #10 prototype (Pasian / Gauvin / Chila) also first of the Prestige class, is followed by sister car #888, driven by Trouillet / Rosselo / Dagoneau.
Single-Seater - Race 1: Peroni conjures up another win
Pole sitter Alex Peroni (TS Corse) didn't hesitate to pull away from Gilles Hériau (Formula Motorsport) and Alexey Chuklin (MP Motorsport) once the lights went out for Race 1; Chuklin having started in 4th position, just behind rival Grégoire Saucy (GSK Grand Prix).
The standings remained the same, despite a Safety Car intervention during the first lap and Saucy got stuck into a superbe battle with several young hopefuls, like himself, of around 16 years old. These included Gilles Magnus (Zig Zag), Antoine Robert (RC Formula) et Thomas Neubauer (Formula Motorsport), who crossed the finish line in this order.