VLN 3 is in the books. Whilst the teams used the last VLN Race before the 24hours of the Nurburgring for Preparation, the spectators could focus on the return of the mighty Lexus RC-F GT3.
Finally we had our first VLN Race in this year, that went over the full distance. But still the Eifel showed her specialty, the tricky weather. Difficult conditions and fog formations delayed the race start again for 20 minutes.
The Race started then in slight rain and was only 2 laps old when the rain got heavy and even light hail came down.
With short pauses at some Track Sections the Rain went on and wet conditions over the most of duration claimed its victims. The Race ended in sunny conditions with dry racing line.
One of the first Victims was the iconic Opel Manta that tested the barriers at the “Stefan-Bellof-S”.
Just after an hour of Racing it got already obvious to the Top Category SP9, with its GT3 Cars, had some of its Competitors missing from the field.
Walkenhorst Motorsport entered 3 BMW M6 GT3 and none of them was to be seen by that time. They ended their Race with crashes. As also one of the Frikadelli Porsches, a ROWE M6 and the Vodafone Merc AMG GT from Get Speed went missing shows how difficult the conditions got even for the Pro Drivers and Nordschleife Specialists.
Further Crashes took also the Ferrari 458, entered by Racing One, and the Aston Martin GT8 from the field amongst others.
Lexus Preparation for the chase twice around the Clock
After almost 3 years returning to the Green Hell with the GT3 Version of the Lexus RC-F the equippe´s focus was clearly to collect driving time and experience with the new regularities since their last entry, to work on the car´s set up.
The new regularities are of course the Aero restriction to GT3 Cars that say that the rear spoiler has to be altered in his position and the newley minimum height of 70mm. This has to be adapted to the set up of the car.
So it is also understandable that the RC-F was not to be found in the leading pack. Under the wet conditions they made sure to bring the car home and draw their conclusion from the days events to engineer the car for a better performance next time.
Happy Porsche Day
From Start to finish it was the day of Factory backed Porsche Team Manthey. They ended the first lap by quite a margin with the #911 in the leading position with only the Schnitzer BMW M6 being able to follow. The leading was only interrupted during the pit stop periods and Manthey victory seemed never to be harmed.
It was a truly dominant show resulting in double win for the #912 and #12. But it was in fact, when they crossed the line a triple podium for Manthy with the #911 on second place.
A pit stop infringement brought them a 15 second time penalty and so the Porsche with the number 911 was ranked as fourth.
The Manthey Team, based in Meuspath just next to the Döttinger Höhe, did the best job in this tricky conditions and showed off their huge experience at the Nürburgring Nordschleife.
Waiting for VLN 4
As the third run of 2019 is now in the books and the 24h Race is just about 8 weeks away, VLN goes into a three month long pause and will return at the 13th of July.
What seems to like an eternity of time to wait, is filled whith lots of action at the Nordschleife as the Qualyfication Race for the 24h Race will take place middle of May and will see the 24h Race end of June.