SP9 Pro Am class win at VLN1

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After a few laps on Friday, we arrived at the circuit on Saturday morning ready for qualifying, only to be greeted by fog which meant a long delay while we waited for the Eifel Mountains to appear! The fog eventually started to lift and a revised timetable was issued with a shorter race of just under 3 hours. Four hours after the original start time, qualifying finally got under way. My team mates Rudi Adams and Immanuel Vinke had a short run each before it was my turn to get a lap in. I did my lap of the Grand Prix loop before taking the short cut to start my lap. A slower car was in front of me, so I dropped back to avoid being slowed by him in the single file row of cones that lead onto the start finish straight. However, I misjudged how slow he was so had to back off before getting back on the throttle, badly compromising my run onto my timed lap. After that I had a relatively clear run until I caught up to the Glickenhaus which was impossible to overtake on the Nordschleife. It was very quick in a straight line and I had to follow it through the twisty bits. In spite of this, I qualified 16th in a very strong field and was looking forward to starting the race.

I didn't have enough tyre temperature at the start which hampered me for the first half lap but I managed to avoid the carnage that unfolded in front of me and found myself behind the number 30 Frikadelli Racing Porsche in P17. It was holding me up through the corners but had good straightline speed so it wasn’t possible to pass it on the straights. I stayed as close as possible while we lapped traffic, ready for any opportunity to get ahead. After 4 laps, I got past through traffic on the Grand Prix loop and pulled away, closing down the other Frikadelli team car which was some way up the road by now. My in lap was relatively clear and I set a purple and green sectors before handing over to Rudi Adams in P8 and second in pro Am. Rudi did his usual professional job and moved up to P1 in class when the leading Audi went off the road, before handing over to Immanuelle still in the class lead and P12 overall, which he held to the end. Walkenhorst Motorsport did their usual excellent job - it's nice to be back on the podium and I'm already looking forward to VLN 2 in just over two weeks!