Marc Lieb as best Porsche driver on sixth grid spot
Stuttgart. In the newly-introduced top 40 qualifying, Porsche works driver Marc Lieb (Germany) secured a good starting position for the 40th running of the Nürburgring 24 hour race with sixth place. Lieb shares the cockpit of the 911 GT3 R (Wochenspiegel Team Manthey) with fellow factory pilots Richard Lietz (Austria) and Romain Dumas (France) as well as racing professional Lucas Luhr (Germany). The race tomorrow will start at 16.00 hours.
“I’m satisfied with my lap, it was very good and the quickest that we’ve ever driven the Porsche here,” stated Marc Lieb, who won the long distance classic last year with Dumas, Luhr and Timo Bernhard. “I lost maybe one or two tenths of a second but it’s nothing serious. Even if I’d driven an absolutely faultless lap, I still couldn’t have made up the missing three seconds to the fastest. We’re also happy with the balance of the car. A lot can happen in 24 hours.”
Also pleased with their time was the second Wochenspiegel quartet in a 911 GT3 MR. Securing 19th in qualifying, the Nordschleife expert Jochen Krumbach (Germany) was the second best Porsche pilot amongst the top 40 qualifiers. Under the direction of Olay Manthey, the most successful team boss at the endurance classic with five overall victories, Krumbach teams up with his compatriots Oliver Kainz, Michael Jacobs and Georg Weiss. “All in all I’m happy with my lap time. After all, 8.26 minutes over more than 25 kilometres is very good under these circumstances,” said Krumbach.
Porsche factory pilot Marco Holzer (Germany) was somewhat disheartened with his 21st spot on the grid: “I wasn’t able to properly use the tyre grip on my fastest lap. But our set-up is good, so we won’t let it get us down. Our motto is now to look ahead, have a trouble-free race and make the best out of it.” The 22-year-old shares the 911 GT3 R fielded by Manthey-Racing with Porsche works drivers Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Long (USA) as well as Nick Tandy (Great Britain), the reigning champion of the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland.
Taking up the race directly behind Holzer are three other 911. Position 22 is occupied by the driver line-up Sabine Schmitz, Klaus Abbelen, Christopher Brück (all Germany) and Patrick Huisman (Netherlands). Taking up the marathon from the 23rd spot in Timbuli Racing’s 911 GT3 R are Marc Hennerici, Marco Seefried, Dennis Busch (all Germany) and Norbert Siedler (Austria). Christian Menzel (Germany), Emmanuel Collard (France), Mike Stursberg (Germany) and H.G Riegel (Germany) secured the 24th starting position for the Haribo Racing team. The second 911 run by Timbuli Racing starts from the 33rd spot.
Falken Motorsports under the direction of Sven Schnabl was not permitted to participate in the top 40 qualifying because it inadvertently went out on the track too early during the last practice. Like last year, at the wheel of the 911 GT3 R are four experienced and well-rehearsed pilots. Joining Porsche works driver Wolf Henzler (Germany) for the 24 hour chase are Sebastian Asch (Germany), Martin Ragginger (Austria) and Peter Dumbreck (Great Britain) driving for the Falken Motorsports squad.
The top 40 qualifying was introduced for the 40th anniversary of the race. The criteria to take part in the top 40 qualifying were the results of the first three Nürburgring Long Distance Championship races as well as the qualifying results of the 24 hour event. The qualifying order is then allotted. At about five-second intervals, the vehicles went out onto the track where a formation lap and two timed laps followed. The 24 hour race takes off tomorrow at 16.00 hours. TV station Sport1 broadcasts the entire race via live-streaming on sport1. The TV station also provides extensive coverage from the Nürburgring.
1. Müller/Müller/Alzen/Adorf (D/D/D/D), BMW Z4 GT3, 8:18.382 minutes
2. Mamerow/Abt/Ammermüller/Hahne (D/D/D/D), Audi R8 LMS ultra, + 1.319 seconds
3. Edwards/Bleekemolen/Metzger/Schall (GB/NL/CH/D), Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, + 1.668
4. Heyer/Schneider/Arnold/Margaritis (D/D/D/D), Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, + 2.349
5. Hürtgen/Schwager/Bastian/Adorf (D/D/D/D), BMW Z4 GT3, + 2.524
6. Lieb/Lietz/Dumas/Luhr (D/A/F/D), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 3.002
7. Frankenhout/Simonsen/Kaffer/Arnold (NL/S/D/D), Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, +3.223
8. Fässler/Mies/Rast/Stippler (CH/D/D/D), Audi R8 LMS ultra, + 3.437
9. Lamy/Kechele/Lauda/Van der Ende (P/D/A/NL), BMW Z 4 GT3, + 3.847
10. Graf/Jäger/Roloff/Seyffarth (D/D/D/D), Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, + 3.871
19. Weiss/Kainz/Jacobs/Krumbach (D/D/D/D), Porsche 911 GT3 MR, + 8.526
21. Holzer/Tandy/Bergmeister/Long (D/GB/D/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 9.323
22. Abbelen/Schmitz/Brück/Huisman (D/D/D/NL), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 10.233
23. Hennerici/Seefried/Busch/Siedler (D/D/D/A), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 10.564
24. Menzel/Collard/Stursberg/Riegel (D/F/D/D), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 10.803
35. Gebhardt/Grossmann/Kentenich/Posavac (D/D/D/D), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, + 24.126
37. Gülden/Kisters/Panchyrz/Schmickler (D/D/D/D), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, + 27.012
40. Henzler/Dumbreck/Ragginger/Asch (D/GB/A/D), Porsche 911 GT3 R