Frikadelli Racing ends dry spell with fourth position in the fourth leg of VLN series Nürburgring
• Strong drivers‘ performance in heavy rain rewarded with season’s best result so far
• Janine Hill, John Shoffner and Arno Klasen second in Cup2 category with Frikadelli-Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
Frikadelli Racing has started the second half of this year’s endurance championship Nürburgring (VLN) season with a strong fourth place overall. After drivind through torrential rain for the entire four-hour race, Patrick Huisman (NL), Norbert Siedler (A) and Sabine Schmitz (Barweiler) bagged the team’s best result this season. For a few laps, even a podium position seemed within grasp. Team owner Klaus Abbelen had to cancel his start due to an injured foot.
Thick fog and heavy rain forced the organizers to postpone practice for an hour. In the delayed qualifying the Frikadelli-Porsche 911 GT3 R was good for position nine on the grid. Patrick Huisman drove the first stint and again proved his abilities by climbing to fifth when the field was still on the Grand Prix circuit during the first lap. After three laps he had even advanced to P2. An aquaplaning-induced spin, however, demoted the Dutchman to fifth. When trying to overtake an Audi in the Brünnchen section for P3, the cars touched. The Frikadelli-Porsche’ stern hid the barriers but the car was able to rejoin the race without substantial damage. After eight laps, Norbert Siedler took over the Porsche from Huisman in sixth place. Within his ten-lap stint, the Austrian worked his way up to third. Sabine Schmitz then took the wheel for the final stint. After sipping on the extremely wet track, she took the chequered flag in fourth position.
In category SP7, Frank Kräling and Christopher Brück posted the second fastest qualifying time with the Frikadelli-run Porsche 911 GT3 MR. Because of a technical problem in the exhaust system however they were unable to start the race. In the Porsche Cup category another Frikadelli-run car started second with Arno Klasen at the wheel. After eight clean laps he lead the category and handed the car over to the Porsche over to Janine Hill. Klasen drove the third stint, before John Shoffner brought the Porsche home in second.
The race of Herbert von Danwitz in the BMW M235i was over after just after the start when he was hit by a competitor and spun into the gravel bed.
Quote after the race
Patrick Huisman (NL, driver): “Our Porsche felt fantastic in the rain on the Nordschleife, even when conditions changed from lap to lap and I had to try another racing line each time. It was more difficult on the Grand Prix circuit however. After three laps I was up to second when I spun on a puddle and lost a few positions. Towards the end of my stint I caught up to an Audi that closed the door very aggressively several times. It was virtually inevitable that we touched. I slid into the barriers but luckily the car showed no severe damage.”
Norbert Siedler (A, driver): “Patrick drove a great stint. I was able to take over in sixth position and hand the car to Sabine in P3. My stint went ok as well but there was a lot of rain. There were extremely bad conditions in places on the Nordschleife with quite a few opportunities for aquaplaning. However, I felt fine and was able to do ten laps.”
Sabine Schmitz (D, driver): “In the Eiskurve I spun on a Tsunami and came to a halt just before a very high curb. At first I couldn’t engage reverse and had to go through the whole procedure again. After that the gearbox didn’t shift down anymore. I cruised around in low revs for a while until this problem was solved as well. I’m very happy that we came home in fourth safely. There was no way to defend third place: On the drying Norschleife the same understeer as on the Grand Prix circuit appeared. Anyway – we made it to the finish and that’s what counts.”
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