Rene Rast claimed his fourth consecutive race victory in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup as he won the series' 200th race at the Nurburgring.
Polesitter Kuba Giermaziak retained the lead at the start of the race, with Rast moving up into second place. At Turn 2 Nick Tandy and Kevin Estre spun simultaneously and dropped to the back of the field.
The leading duo soon had a surprise challenger in the form of Sebastiaan Bleekemolen. The Dutchman had started from 12th on the grid, but chose to begin on wet tyres after a shower shortly before the race. On the slightly wet track he enjoyed superior grip through the opening turns and moved through into the lead of the race midway through the opening lap. However, he would soon lose pace as the track turned to dry and he would eventually finish a lap down.
Veltins Lechner Racing driver Rast took the lead of the race and held on under pressure from Verva Racing Team's Giermaziak to win by a second and strengthen his championship lead.
“That was a perfect race,” said Rast. “The conditions were unbelievably tough. First it was totally wet, then dry again. When you're at the front it's very difficult to predict what's going to happen. You never know what to expect in the next second. It's a lot easier for the guys behind me. They can just wait to see what I do. Towards the end I slowed the pace a little to bring my victory home safely. With an eye on the championship, this was a great weekend for us.”
Giermaziak was pleased with second place even though he is still waiting for his maiden win.
“Congratulations to Rene,” he said. “He drove a strong race under the most difficult conditions. As the track dried up I was quicker, in fact I could have won today. At least we had the speed. But Rene is not one to make silly mistakes when he's under pressure. And I wasn't prepared to risk anything. So now we just have to keep waiting for our first win, but I'm quite sure it'll happen this season.”
Sean Edwards came home in third place for Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit.
“I started from seventh on the grid and finished in third – that's not bad under such tough conditions,” said Edwards. “In the dry we simply didn't have the speed to attack.”
Norbert Siedler held off the attack of Stefan Rosina to take fourth, the latter having dropped back at the start after starting on the front row alongside his teammate Giermaziak.
Jeroen Bleekemolen finished in sixth, ahead of fellow Dutchman Patrick Huisman. Istanbul winner Christian Engelhardt was eighth, ahead of guest racer Christian Menzel who came through from the back of the grid to finish ninth. The top ten was completed by American William Langhorne.
Rast has extended his championship lead to 15 points, with Edwards now in second place. Seven points further back is Siedler, while Tandy is now fourth, 32 points away from Rast.
Race results – 14 laps:
1. RenÃ© Rast (D), VELTINS Lechner Racing, 30:00.552 minutes
2. Kuba Giermaziak (PL) VERVA Racing Team, + 1.001 seconds
3. Sean Edwards (GB), Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit, + 5.288
4. Norbert Siedler (A), VELTINS Lechner Racing, + 8.042
5. Stefan Rosina (SK), VERVA Racing Team, + 8.628
6. Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL), Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit, + 9.964
Drivers' standings after 6 of 9 races:
1. RenÃ© Rast (D), 105 points
2. Sean Edwards (GB), 90
3. Norbert Siedler A), 83
4. Nick Tandy (GB), 72
5. Kuba Giermaziak (PL), 70
6. Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL), 68