Just one week after the second ADAC GT Masters race weekend of the season at the Lausitzring, the next race meeting will take place this weekend (27th – 28th May) for many Super Sports Car League drivers and teams with the ADAC Zurich 24h-race at the Nürburgring. And their chances of winning look promising. This classic race on the Nordschleife gets under way at 3.30pm.
Last year’s championship winners, Connor De Phillippi (23, USA) and Christopher Mies (27, DEU) will lead the group of ADAC GT Masters drivers contesting the one-day classic. As in the Super Sports Car League, the pair of them will line up with their championship winning team, Land Motorsport, who will this year enjoy works support from Audi for the first time in the 24-hour race. As double entrants, De Phillippi and Mies will also compete in the two Audi R8 LMSs fielded by the German racing team and have two more former ADAC GT Masters winners, Kelvin van der Linde (20, ZA) and Christopher Haase (29, DEU), as team-mates. Markus Winkelhock (36, DEU) will also line up for Land Audi Sport. Christopher Mies: “We intend to win, for sure, but a lot can happen in the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring, so it will be vital to have a problem-free race. Still, we are extremely well prepared.” Two more ADAC GT Masters drivers, Dennis Busch (29, DEU) and Frank Stippler (42, DEU), will drive the Audi R8 LMS.
Mercedes-AMG drivers are also among the favourites to take victory overall. In 2016, GT3 sports cars manufactured by the brand with the star took the top four places in the 24-hour race. Indy Dontje (24, NL) and Patrick Assenheimer (25, DEU) will race for HTP Motorsport as in the ADAC GT Masters. Stefan Mücke (35, DEU) and Sebastian Asch (30, DEU) will also compete for the racing team from Altendiez on the Nordschleife. Mücke: “We hope to be up front again. The race has a very large, strong field of some 30 GT3 cars, which will make it harder than ever. And so, it’s almost impossible to make any predictions. I’m looking forward to the challenge and feel good about the race.” The 2012 ADAC GT Masters champion, Maximilian Götz (31, DEU), and Luca Stolz (21, DEU) will also drive the Mercedes-AMG.
Philipp Eng (27, A) and BMW Team Schnitzer also rate their chances of taking the overall win in the BMW M6 GT3 highly. However, the Austrian will not be lining up for the outfit from Freilassing as in the ADAC GT Masters but for another team. Eng: “There are some incredible teams and drivers taking part this year. At least 30 cars have a chance of winning. We’ve prepared as best we can in order to achieve a good result, but making any predictions is nigh on impossible.” BMW Team Schnitzer will field two M6 GT3s for current and former DTM drivers.
Four Super Sports Car League drivers – Klaus Bachler (25, A), Mathieu Jaminet (22, F), Sven Müller (25/DEU) and Robert Renauer (32, DEU) – will contest this 45th edition of the ADAC Zurich in the Porsche 911 GT3 R. “I’m delighted to be back in the 24-hour race after not being able to take part last year,” said Porsche works driver Müller. “I’ll be sharing the drive with three amateur drivers in the Pro-Am category. Our aim is victory in class.” Daniel Keilwitz (27, DEU) and Marco Mapelli (29, I) will race an usual vehicle car in the Green Hell, as 2013 ADAC GT Masters champion Keilwitz will be swapping his Corvette C7 GT3-R for a Ferrari 488 GT3. Lamborghini works driver Mapelli will stick with the Huracán GT3.
Some of the other ADAC GT Masters drivers will be contesting this race for the first time, driving new GT4 cars from Audi and BMW on their 24-hour race debut. While Ricky Collard (20, GB) will be at the wheel of the BMW M4 GT4, Rahel Frey (31, CH) and Patrick Huisman (50, NL) will share one of the two brand-new Audi R8 LMS GT4s. Frey: “We’re on a very exciting mission, because this first race in the Audi R8 GT4 LMS will be a test outing. We want to learn as much as possible.” Christian Abt (50, DEU) will be one of their team-mates. He is making his comeback to racing in the Eifel and is another former ADAC GT Masters champion.
Source. ADAC GT Masters/Photo. ADAC Motorsport