After the dominant performance of BMW at the third round of the VLN endurance championship Nürburgring, Audi has regained the top position in the fourth race. Christopher Mies and Connor De Phillippi crossed the finish line in their Audi R8 LMS of Land-Motorsport in first place after a racing time of 4:09,13.995 hours – and scored the already third victory in the current season for Audi. For Mies, this result represents the third overall win in the VLN – and the 15th class victory. Just as Mies, a number of other drivers improved their records of class wins at the fourth VLN race.
A family affair
One of them is Volker Strycek. He succeeded in gaining his 80th class win in the VLN on this last weekend in June and moved into fifth place in the all-time table (introduced in 1990). And this was a very special jubilee as Strycek scored this class victory in the Opel Astra OPC Cup together with his daughter Lena and his son Robin, by the way for the second time in the current season.
Series winners defeated
In the first three VLN races of the current season, Daniel Zils who competes in class V5 had been unable to do anything about the series of victories gained by Dominik Thiemann, Hajo Müller and Jens Riemer (BMW M3). He now succeeded at his fourth attempt: Together with Christian Büllesbach and Andreas Schettler, Zils drove the Porsche Cayman 981 of the Team Pixum Adrenalin Motorsport to the victory in their class and to the the 30th in his VLN career. “I am of course absolutely delighted, in particular as we had already been so close several times this season”, Zils stated after a difficult race in continuous rain.
In class SP3, too, the previous series winners were defeated: Stephan Epp and Gerrit Holthaus, with their Renault Clio Cup Avia Racing the series winners of the first three races of the VLN season, were beaten by the current VLN champions at this fourth round. Dirk and Tim Gronek, who will be competing only occasionally in the VLN 2016 for professional purposes, completed the laps over the wet and slippery Nordschleife with their Clio start number one in a superior manner and instantly celebrated a class win after 4:08,23.589 hours racing time. For both of them, this was the 20th in the VLN career.
Just as in classes SP3 and V5, for the first time this year there were some new faces on top of the winners’ podium also in class H4. Whilst Ralf Schall and Christopher Gerhardt had dominated the first three races in the Porsche 997 GT3 Cup of TAM-Racing, they had this time no chance against Christian Menzel and “Alex Autumn” in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup of raceunion Teichmann Racing. Menzel, too, scored his 30th class win in the VLN.
The clean record of Claudius Karch
One series, however, also endured after the fourth round of the season: For the fourth time in a row, Claudius Karch and Ivan Jacoma in the Porsche Cayman S of Mathol Racing again were unbeaten. The driver duo will thus remain the hot favourites for winning the VLN championship this year. For Karch, their repeated victory signified the 15th class win in his VLN career.