INTERNATIONAL WRAP: NURBURGRING 24 HOUR & AUSSIES OVERSEAS
NURBURGRING 24 HOUR
Australian GT regulars Kelvin van der Linde and Christopher Mies won the Nurburgring 24 Hours for Audi overnight.
The No. 29 driven by Mies and van der Linde, along with teammates Markus Winkelhock and Connor De Phillippi, were battling for the race win during the first 20 hours of the race until electrical gremlins caused them to make a lengthy stop to troubleshoot the issue.
While still in contention, it dropped the No. 29 in the third place and well behind leaders heading into the final hour of the race.
However, during the final round of scheduled pit stops, an inspired choice by the team to go to wet tyres instead of slicks, with weather imminent, saw the team reclaim the lead when leading No. 98 BMW Audi and No. 9 Audi had to return to the pits to swap over to wet tyres. Allowing the No. 29 to reclaim the lead.
The No. 29 Audi Sport Team Land took the win with a 30 second margin to the No. 98 Rowe Racing BMW and No. 9 Audi Sport Team WRT.
WORLD SUPERBIKE – DONNINGTON
Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) bounced back from a crash during Saturday’s opening Superbike race at Donnington to win Sunday’s race.
Rea’s Kawasaki team mate Tom Sykes, took out the opening race of the weekend, putting him contention to win 10 races in a row at Donnington. However, Rea’s result on Sunday robbed the fellow local rider of that claim, leaving him with nine.
The win for Rea also extended his lead in the World Superbike Championship to 55 points over Sykes after six rounds.
Honda paid tribute to the tragic loss of Nicky Hayden between events, bringing his bike to the event where it remained in an empty garage.
The Saturday race results, saw Sykes with the win over fellow locals, Leon Haslam (Kawasaki) and Alex Lowes (Yamaha).
Sunday’s race had Sykes in second behind Rea. With Ducati’s Chaz Davis completing the second all British podium for the weekend.
NASCAR – COCA-COLA 600 CHARLOTTE
Austin Dillon won his first NASCAR Cup Series of his career, taking out the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte.
The win came as fuel conservation for the final stretch of the race was key, with the final caution period on the edge of the fuel window. Race leader, Jimmie Johnson, struggled to save enough fuel at the end. He would run out with just three laps left in the race. Handing the lead to Dillon.
Fuel was also tight for Dillon, who fended of challenges from Kyle Busch and third-place Martin Truex Jr in the closing laps. Taking the chequered flag as he ran out of fuel, crossing the line.
Busch and Truex Jr would second and third respectively.
Matt Campbell finished in a respectable fifth place on his debut on the Monaco street circuit in Porsche Supercup overnight. The Queenslander fought Zaid Ashkanani hard to move up a place for the entire 16 laps, but the tight circuit made passing difficult.
BRITISH FORMULA 3
Australian Formula 4 graduate, Harry Hayek, was unable to start the British Formula 3 races over the weekend after fracturing his lower back in a practice crash at Snetterton.
Hayek walked away from the incident, but will require surgery. At this stage it’s unclear if he’ll race again this season.
FORMULA RENAULT EUROCUP
The Formula Renault Eurocup race in support of the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Monaco was packed full of Aussies.
Alex Peroni was the best, scoring a pair of sixth places in the two races. Unable to pass on the Monaco track Peroni said “The Saturday race showed how important it is to qualify at the top of the field at Monaco, We’d improved the car’s set-up and I was able to hold my position, but there was no way to overtake.”
Australia Formula 4 graduate Luis Leeds was the next best with a 14th and 11th result. Zane Goddard finished 18th and 17th, while Thomas Maxwell ended up 25th and 14th.
AUDI TT CUP
Over in the Audi TT Cup at the Nürburgring (in support of the 24 hour race) Drew Ridge earned a hard fought sixth place result after starting third in the second race.
A moment on cold tyres on the opening lap dropped Ridge back down the ninth, before fighting his way back through the field.
The first race was deemed a non-event after being red flagged prior to completing 50% race distance.
NISSAN MICRA CUP
Keishi Ayukai had a mixed result over in Quebec. Starting the first race of the weekend eighth, Ayukai fought his way through the field to finish in fourth.
While in the second race, a battle amongst the top eight cars saw Ayukai make contact with another car, dropping him to tenth. He fought his way back up to ninth. But a post race penalty (the Nissan Micra Cup has a strictly no contact policy) saw him dropped three places to 12th.
For a more details about the motorsport around the world last weekend, pick up the next issue of Auto Action, on sale Thursday. In the mean time make sure you follow Auto Action on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all the latest updates.
Date posted: May 29, 2017