06/09/2021 – by Martin Grühler
The infamous Eifel weather caused a 14-hour break in the 49th edition of the international ADAC race. It was enough for Daniel Kielwitz to rank only 13.
In heavy rain and fog, the WTM Ferrari 488 produced by ex-DTM team Phoenix with Daniel Kielwitz (Villingen-Schweningen), Jochen Crumbach (Eschweiler) and Indy Dontje (Leylstadt/Netherlands) was really good with fast times. road. All three finished 13th overall – less than worth. George Weiss was to complete the Ferrari drivers into a quartet. Monschauer withdrew his participation after the training.
start from position 22
WTM Ferrari started from position 22. The late cancellation of the qualifying race 14 days earlier, where several places had already been allotted, had led to a better position on the starting grid. In three qualifying sessions count, Kielwitz ran the twelfth fastest lap. In top qualifying, 31-year-old Willinger finished sixth in his group of 20 vehicles.
Once again, an old racing driver said that was to be used at the Nürburgring, which says: “If you can’t see the old knight’s castle from the start area, it’s raining. Right there if you can see them.” Then it will definitely rain again.” The second paragraph of the statement was made quickly, because: the torrential rain blocked the thickets of fog – the knight’s castle with nothing to see.
Frequent heavy rain caused very dangerous aquaplaning, especially in the first few hours of the race. The special challenge on the Eiffel rollercoaster in the 25.378 kilometer long combination of the famous Nordschleife and Grand Prix courses is the different weather conditions in different slope areas. While road conditions were still dry in the start/finish area, actual rainfall in the Adenauer Forest section had subsided. When the rain subsides and the ideal line dries up, questions for drivers and team decision-makers: Use slick tires with a truncated profile or rain tires, the latter with a softer rubber compound and higher wear. with.
Weather-wise or not: planning for a top result for the WTM Ferrari team was not immediately slowed down because of the weather. A tire damage just after the start threw the white Ferrari far behind at number 22. Starting driver Indy Dontje had moved to 68th place due to a quick tire change on lap one. After an hour of running, Italomobil was one lap behind in 39th place.
This unplanned incident with a loss of over four minutes was due retroactively when the race was interrupted after 59 laps at 10 pm, leaving WTM-Ferrari unfortunately just over a lap from Rovetam’s leading BMW from the previous year. was lost.
When the race was interrupted, the red flagged Maranello racer moved back to 22nd in the 121-car field. The reason the race was interrupted with a red flag for race management was the multiple cleanup operations following the accidents, which in turn allowed the cars’ tires to cool so much that they no longer had proper grip. And the thick fog in the early morning hours simply did not want to evaporate.
When the race resumed for the final four-hour sprint, Roe-BMW’s lead was cut short as the front-runner’s same lap allowed all other competitors to catch up behind the safety car. Due to the rules, Ferrari maintained its lap constraints. Thus a placement outside the expected top ten was practically finally cemented.
By the final hour of the race, Ferrari held position 21 or 22 in a stage featuring several pit stops. Final driver Kielwitz was able to reach 13th in his final stint, also benefiting from late failures. The double city driver later drove the same lap times as the winning cars.
In the end, the Menthe-Porsche 911 GT3 R with Matteo Caroli (Italy), Michael Christensen (Great Britain) and Kevin Astre (Hoechst) won the “shortest” 24 Hours of Nürburgring ever.
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