After heartbreak in yesterday’s opening race, Valentin Hasse-Clot and Theo Nouet secured their first win of the 2020 campaign in today’s one-hour race on the 4.226-kilometre circuit on the Adriatic coast.
Starting the race from second place on the grid, Hasse-Clot immediately passed the pole-sitting NM Racing Team Mercedes-AMG to take the lead. Lluc Ibanez dropped to fourth place, with Allied-Racing’s Nicolaj Møller-Madsen and RN Vision STS Racing Team’s Gabriele Piana also managing to get past the struggling Mercedes-AMG.
Hasse-Clot quickly opened up a lead of three seconds over Møller-Madsen, with a group of cars, including yesterday’s winning Mercedes-AMG and the #111 RN Vision STS BMW, battling for position right behind the Danish driver. Almost 15 minutes into the race, Piana managed to get by Møller-Madsen to take second place overall. In the scuffle behind the top three, V8 Racing’s Jop Rappange managed to take fourth.
Up front Piana was not in a position to challenge the leading AGS Events Aston Martin however, as Hasse-Clot continued to put in fast laps. When the pit window opened the French driver was almost 10 seconds clear of the RN Vision STS driver, with Pro-Am leader Møller-Madsen in third place overall another five seconds further down the road.
The leaders made their mandatory pit-stop right at the end of the pit window, with Nouet taking over from Hasse-Clot and Schouten taking over the BMW from Piana. Nouet continued to control the race for AGS Events and Schouten soon realized his hopes of victory were gone.
Instead, the Dutchman had to fight right until the end to stay on the podium. V8 Racing’s Thijmen Nabuurs closed in on the #111 RN Vision BMW and with just over ten minutes left Nabuurs passed Schouten to take second place. As race leader Nouet went onto the final lap, Xavier Lloveras also closed the gap, but despite multiple efforts Lloveras was unable to pass the Dutchman.
After 35 laps, Nouet crossed the line to take the chequered flag and claim the first overall win for the French squad in the GT4 European Series. The #17 V8 Racing Chevrolet came home in second place, with the #11 RN Vision STS BMW taking the third spot in the final race of the weekend. Yesterday’s winners NM Racing Team finished in fourth place.
Allied Racing’s Jan Kasperlik and his Danish teammate Bastian Buus finished fifth overall, claiming the Pro-Am victory in the #22 Allied Racing Porsche, with Cem Bölükbasi in the #12 Borusan Otomotiv Motorsport BMW finishing second in class after passing the #21 Allied Racing Porsche of Jörg Viebahn at turn 8 with just two minutes left on the clock.
Bob Herber took his second Am class win of the weekend in the #31 Selleslagh Racing Team Mercedes-AMG, finishing ninth overall. The #89 AGS Events Aston Martin was second in class, followed by the #71 W&D Racing Team BMW.
The GT4 European Series will return to action next month (4-6 September) at the Nürburgring.
Valentin Hasse-Clot, #27 AGS Events Aston Martin: “We had to do a good start because we didn’t want to be in a fight. We knew we had a good car after yesterday’s race. Today is like redemption day, I would say. We just had to pull away and to manage to gap. Theo did a great job to finish the race and we had a fantastic car.”
Theo Nouet, #27 AGS Events Aston Martin: “Honestly, it was so easy in the car. The car was just amazing. I don’t have anything else to say, the car was so amazing.”
Jan Kasperlik, #22 Allied-Racing Porsche: “Bastian told me that the car was difficult to drive today. After my second lap, I noticed the rears were getting worse every lap. So I had to manage tyres, try to overtake some cars, try to pull a gap. That was really difficult and I think this was one of the toughest races I had in GT4.”
Bastian Buus, #22 Allied-Racing Porsche: I was catching up with the guys in front and tried to stay with the group. When I handed the car to Jan he could fight with the guys!”
Source. SRO Motorsports Group