Loeb And Parente Win Wet Navarra Qualifying Race

by Peter Allen
Sebastien Loeb Racing - Photo Credit: V-IMAGES.com/Fabre

Sebastien Loeb and Alvaro Parente claimed victory in a wet FIA GT Series qualifying race at Navarra.

Parente leapt from fourth to first at the start of the race and opened up a comfortable lead in his McLaren before handing over to Loeb at the pitstops.

The Frenchman took the checkered flag with a ten second advantage over the second-placed Audi of Frank Stippler and Edward Sandstrom. Sandstrom fell behind team-mate and title rival Laurens Vanthoor shortly before the pitstops, where the two Audi crews made differing tyre choices.

Vanthoor’s co-driver Stephane Ortelli went back out on slick tyres, which resulted in him falling back to seventh while Stippler stuck with wets to finish second.

The Grasser Racing Lamborghini completed the podium and claimed Pro-Am honours after Gerhard Tweraser surged up the order after taking the wheel from Hari Proczyk, finishing one place ahead of Proczyk’s title rivals Sergey Afanasiev and Andreas Simonsen.

Andreas Zuber and Mike Parisy finished fifth in the second Loeb McLaren from 18th on the grid ahead of the Novadriver Audi of Cesar Campanico and new team-mate Michael Ammermuller.

Gentleman Trophy runners Claudio Sdanewitsch and Michele Rugolo took a fine eighth overall, after Rugolo had run in the top four in the early stages. The top ten was completed by the Lamborghini of Patrick Cunha and Mattheus Stumpf and BMW drivers Caca Bueno and Allam Khodair, who passed the similar machine of Karun Chandhok towards the end.

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