FIA GT1 – Marc VDS Ford Cleans Up In Ordos

September 4, 2011

Uncategorized

Fred Makowiecki and Maxime Martin in the Nr41 Marc VDS Ford GT completed the double at Ordos International Circuit with victory in the Championship Race to add to their Qualifying Race success the previous day. Over 15,000 spectators packed the main straight grandstand and lined the grass banks of the Inner Mongolian circuit to witness the first instalment of GT1’s Chinese triple-header. The total weekend attendance was put at over 20,000 marking an impressive debut for the championship in China.

 

It was another commanding performance from the Ford GT pair. They held the upper hand since Qualifying to take a maximum of 33 points from the weekend.

 

They withstood a sustained pursuit from the JRM Racing Nissan GT-R Nr22 of Richard Westbrook and Peter Dumbreck for the second consecutive race.

 

Stef Dusseldorp and Clivio Piccione in the Hexis Aston Martin Nr3 were true to their promise of finishing on the podium by claiming third place. Fourth was the Hexis stablemates Christian Hohenadel and Andrea Piccini in the Nr4 Aston Martin.
The drivers’ championship leaders Lucas Luhr and Michael Krumm in the JRM Racing Nr23 Nissan GT-R had an eventual race. Starting from the sixth row, Luhr had worked his way up to eighth at the driver change.

 

However, just as in the Qualifying Race the previous day, the duo were plagued by wheel nut problems at the pit stop and rejoined in 13th. By the end Krumm had taken the Nissan to ninth place and two points.

 

Their nearest challengers, Marc Basseng and Markus Winkelhock in the All-Inkl.com Münnich Motorsport Nr38, starting from 15th, following a stewards’ ruling relegated them from sixth place.

Winkelhock produced a stunning opening stint to bring the Nr38 through the field before handing over to Basseng who rejoined in eighth place. The German pair eventually finished eighth (4 points).

 

Despite their troubles, Basseng and Winkelhock (101) were able to close the gap to Luhr and Krumm (113) in the overall drivers’ standings.

 

The result shook up the chase for the teams’ title. All-Inkl.com Münnich Motorsport (182) dropped from joint first to third behind JRM (190) and Hexis (185).

 

Home soil did not prove to be a happy hunting ground for China’s Ho-Pin Tung in the Exim Bank Team China Corvette Nr11. Having been deprived of a chance to drive in the Qualifying Race after co-driver Jeroen den Boer damaged the car into retirement; Tung started the main event from the last row.

 

Tung gained four places by the time of the driver change and den Boer brought the Corvette home in 12th place. There was further disappointment for the other Team China Corvette Nr12 in the hands of Sergio Jimenez and Michael Rossi. Jimenez ran strongly in the midfield before handing over to Rossi who spun the car at turn 17 by getting on the gas a little early and finished last.

WHAT THE DRIVER’S SAY…..

 

1st Maxime Martin

nr41 Marc VDS Racing Team Ford GT Matech

“It has been a perfect weekend for us with pole position and two wins. We have to thank the team for the job they did for the whole weekend, the car just got better and better. Fred (Makowiecki) did a very good stint yesterday and again today, so it is just perfect.

 

“I got a great start and we had a very fair race and good battle with Richard (Westbrook). We were quite a bit quicker than the others and we opened a gap until the Safety Car. However it was a perfect race.”

 

1st Frederic Makowiecki

nr41 Marc VDS Racing Team Ford GT Matech

“I tried to do a very quick out lap but Peter (Dumbreck) was very close when he came out of the pitlane after his stop. He put a lot of pressure on me but I was able to open up a gap which helped. The car was pretty hard on the set up and it was difficult to push. I had to concentrate hard until the very last lap of the race. It is a great feeling winning the first race in China for the GT1 World Championship. The whole team at Marc VDS did a great job and it is a fantastic feeling to win the first GT1 World Championship race in China.”

 

2nd Richard Westbrook

nr22 JR Motorsports Nissan GT-R

“We had a very good race and well done to Maxime Martin and Fred Makowiecki. It is good to race like this; good clean racing and it’s good for the fans. We didn’t quite have enough to get close to them and they didn’t have quite enough to pull out a big gap. So it was pretty much stalemate. I’d also like to say well done to the organisers, it’s been a fantastic event and a very good atmosphere and I hope everyone enjoyed the race.

 

“We didn’t have the speed to beat these guys on the track, we could just keep the gap to within two seconds but our only chance to get them was in the pitlane. I thought we could’ve done but unfortunately the Belgian Racing Ford came in in front of me with a problem and I was very slow on my in lap, I think I lost 4 or 5 seconds. The guys did a super pitstop and it would’ve probably been enough to get us out in front if I hadn’t been delayed, which was frustrating. However it is a good result and good to be on the podium.”

 

2nd Peter Dumbreck

nr22 JR Motorsports Nissan GT-R

“We’ve had a change of luck this weekend. We’ve both worked really hard with our engineer but we didn’t expect to be quick at this track and we certainly didn’t expect to be on the same pace as the Ford and way quicker than anyone else. We’re really happy about the way we set the car up and this has paid off with two podiums.

 

“JRM are now leading the Team Championship and with the nr23 car carry 60 kilos it wasn’t going to be easy for them so we had to pull our weight here – excuse the pun – and get a result and some championship points for the team.”

 

3rd Stef Dusseldorp

nr3 Hexis AMR Aston Martin DB9

“The start was quite good, being on the outside is always difficult as there is a lot of dust on track but I cut through. I tried to follow the Nissans, who were a little bit quicker but at the end with the Safety Car the gap closed. Overall the first part of the race was OK. The track suits the Aston well. It is difficult in part, especially both the chicanes; this where we had a little bit of a problem in qualifying. The race car was really good, but not quick enough to follow the first two cars.”

 

3rd Clivio Piccione

nr3 Hexis AMR Aston Martin DB9

“It’s a great feeling to back up on the podium, especially in front of the large, enthusiastic crowd here in Ordos. It was good to show them what we can do. We had a great weekend; its was a difficult start as Stef said but the team did a great job to set up the car and I don’t think we could’ve done better. The whole team didn’t put a foot wrong in both races, with the other car finishing in 4th place today. There is a great spirit within the team.”

 

12th Ho-Pin Tung

nr11 Exim Team Bank China Corvette Z06

“Up until the race it was a pretty dreadful weekend for us. My teammate had a touch at the start with one of the Fords yesterday and this morning we had an engine problem in the warm-up. The team had to change the engine and they did an amazing job in finishing it so quickly.

 

“The car was running well and we had a clean start, we didn’t take any risks. I’ve seen a lot of races in GT1, I’ve followed it a lot, and I’ve seen there is a lot of carnage in the first lap but I tried to avoid that. We had steady pace and I handed over to Jeroen in 11th place and we finished 12th. We did a good pit stop, which was my first one, so it was a good end to a difficult weekend and we’re looking forward to Beijing.  It was a good crowd, it was good fun great to receive the support – I would’ve liked to have given them a better result but we’ll try again in Beijing.”

 

11th Antoine Leclerc

nr10 Belgian Racing Ford GT Matech

“It was an amazing performance from the Marc VDS team and a great weekend for Ford GT, but we are disappointed [to be pipped at the line for 10th] because today we could have finished in the top ten. The car was more difficult to drive than yesterday so we will have to see how we do in Beijing. I think Beijing will suit the Ford and we will do the maximum to finish in the top ten or even the top five, because it would be a great result for the team.”

 

14th Alex Müller

Nr7 Young Driver AMR Aston Martin DB9

“It was a disappointing weekend. We’ve had a problem all weekend which began in Qualifying, something is wrong in the car and it seems to be electrical. We had to change the engine from Qualifying to the Qualifying Race yesterday because it was running on 11 cylinders, and it was the same with the new engine. It’s not mechanical, it must be something electrical. We don’t know where the problem is yet and it’s our biggest issue ahead of Beijing.

 

“In terms of the next race, as we saw here tight circuits aren’t good for the Aston but in Pre-Qualifying the car was good – the engine was fine, the chassis was good and all weekend the set-up was perfect. But with the misfire, if you run only on 11 cylinders you can’t expect much. Considering that, the Qualifying performance and the speed in the race was not so bad; I don’t know how fast we would’ve gone if everything had been running well. But in Pre-Qualifying we were on the same pace as the Ford. A podium might have been possible.”

 

6th Nicky Pastorelli

Nr37 All-Inkl.com Münnich Motorsport Lamborghini Murcielago 670 R-SV

“This weekend was damage limitation. We didn’t end up where we wanted to be after Qualifying, but yesterday was OK and the race today was OK. Speed-wise, we weren’t very good but also not bad either so I think we did the maximum we could.  In theory, Beijing should suit us as tight tracks suit the Lamborghini but we will have to see in a few days how we get on.”

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