SLS AMG GT3 places 3rd at 24 hours of Dubai - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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SLS AMG GT3 places 3rd at 24 hours of Dubai

Need for Speed Schubert BMW wins 24 Hours of Dubai

After taking the lead in the evening, the No. 76 Need for Speed BMW Z4 never looked back, with Augusta Farfus, Claudia Hurtgen, Tommy Milner and Edward Sandström running a flawless race to win the sixth edition of the 24 Hours of Dubai after 593 laps.

Podium: race winners Augusto Farfus, Edward Sandström, Tom Milner, Claudia Hürtgen. Photo by Schubert Motorsport.

The German GT car held a four lap lead over the AF Corse Ferrari F430 of Eppe Perazzin, Michal Broniszewski, Lorenzo Casè and Marco Cioci. A lone Mercedes AMG SLS GT3 ended up in the top five with a third place finish, driven by Thomas Jäger, Kenneth Heyer, Jan Seyffarth and Sean Paul Breslin, even though they would cross the finish line with a jack problem. During each pitstop, the car had to be raised onto wooden blocks with mechanics doing it the old-fashioned way. The SLS's debut in endurance sportscar racing is marked by all three cars finishing. After a fuel pump issue in the late morning, Bernd Schneider and his teammates from Heico Motorsport rallied to the checkered flag in seventh place, while the seconde SLS Black Falcon finished 24th. The Muhlner Motorsport Porsche finished in 41st after is troubles, which can't be said for that of Nicolas Armindo (Hermes Attempto) after a mechanical problem force retirement. As for the Porsche of Martin Ragginger, it also retired after a heave crash during the night.

Although the Porsches were out in force at the start, this event was a bit of a disaster for the German marque, after winning last year. The highest placing Porsche, the GT3-R Tolimit Arabia driven by Al Qubaisi/Maasen/Bleekemolen/Edwards, just missed the podium finishing 11 laps back.

Despite a black flag near the end of the race for a fluid leak, the second Need for Speed BMW Z4 finished in the top five, two laps ahead of the Porsche 997 GT3 Cup of Saudi Falcons by Lechner Racing driven by Binladen/Al Faisal/Faulkner/Vergers.

In SP2 class, Bovi Motorsport once again took honors with Wolfgang Kaufmann, sharing with Miro Konopka, while Gomez Competition's GC10.2 driven by Poitevineau/Roy/Centre/Provins came home second. The last step of the podium went to Gravity Racing International's Mosler.

#76 Need for Speed Schubert BMW Z4 GT3: Augusto Farfus, Edward Sandström, Tom Milner, Claudia Hürtgen takes the checkered flag. Photo by Dubai Autodrome.

Of course, a Porsche took the 997 class with De Lorenzi Racing's Fendi/Parato/Piodi/Mastronardi. Autoweiland finished second ahead of the French team Ullivieri Racing/Boutsen Energy. A good performance from drivers Eric Vaissière, Jean-Charles Battut, Pierre Perret, Gilbert Duconget and Phillippe Ullivieri who finish in the top 20 overall.

The GT4s were in top form at Dubai with two cars finishing in the top 20. At the end of the day it was the Donkervoort D8 GT driven by De Bruijn/Dunkervoort/Wintenberger who would take class honors (13th overall). Meanwhile the HMR Aston Martin V8 of Hancock/Masaood/Kane/Kapadia finished second (15th overall). Auto Sport GP dominated the A2 class from the start of the race. Finishing 29th overall, the Renault Clio of Véricel/Mulot/Grifnée took the win ahead of the Besaplast Mini Cooper S and the second Renault Clio from Auto Sport GP of Buccella/Chifflet/Quillez/Reicher.

Disappointment for the all woman driving squad from Springbox Concept as Corentine, Cyndie, Amandine and Jade could have fought for top position had it not been for an engine problem. Same frustration for VDS Racing Adventures with the retirement of their Ford Mustang after a blown motor. The Ford could have as well played for top spots as driver Stéphane Lémeret showed his experience in the early stages of the race.
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