I was very happy to find that, for the first time this year, sunshine greeted me when I woke up Saturday morning. Not a cloud to be seen! However, there had been a heavy dew overnight and the ground was very wet, which wouldn’t make way for dry tarmac until there was 30 minutes left of the qualifying session. We’ve all had a lot of wet running this year at VLN, and it was clear the track would dry up but not with enough time for all of us to get a run, so Christian and I elected to not go out in qualifying. David was sent out at the end to go for a time on slicks, and we ended up on pole position, so it was as good a start to the weekend as we could’ve hoped for!
Christian started the race and made a great getaway only for the race to be red flagged after a multiple car accident shortly after the start. At the second attempt, he repeated the excellent start, lead onto the Nordschleife and appeared in the lead at the end of lap one. At this point he started to struggle as the tyres went off and dropped to fifth at the beginning of lap 4. He held on until the end of lap 5 when he pitted from P5 and I took over down in P11. In a stint littered with Code 60 zones (sometimes 3 different ones in lap!), I passed the #23 Mercedes then caught the sister Walkenhorst car and was ahead by the end of the next lap. After a few laps I was up to P4 and had the second and third place Mercedes' in sight. I made some inroads into them before pitting at the end of lap 13 to hand over to David. He completed a strong stint before handing back to Christian who took the car to the end of the race. The leading Mercedes was a long way ahead, but after all the pit stops shook out, we finished a strong P2, giving us consecutive VLN podiums.
The last round of VLN is on 26 October and it would be nice to end the season on a high.