GT World Challenge Europe

Gotz and Buhk Win Main Blancpain Sprint Series Race at Portimao

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HTP Mercedes - Photo Credit: Brecht Decancq Photography
HTP Mercedes - Photo Credit: Brecht Decancq Photography

Maximilian Gotz and Maximilian Buhk claimed victory in the main Blancpain Sprint Series race at Portimao, extending the former’s championship lead.

Early in the opening stint, Gotz did what he couldn’t do in the qualifying race and got his #84 HTP Motorsport Mercedes past the #28 Grasser Racing Lamborghini of Hari Proczyk.

He and regular co-driver Buhk were unchallenged after that, opening up a lead of over ten seconds over the competition.

Proczyk and Jeroen Bleekemolen held second until late on, when they were passed by the #1 WRT Audi of Laurens Vanthoor. It was later decided, however, that Vanthoor had exceeded track limits in preparing for that manoeuvre and that he and co-driver Cesar Ramos should be penalised 30 seconds, dropping them to eighth.

Proczyk and Bleekemolen therefore took second, leaving them 23 points behind leader Gotz in the standings with two rounds to go. Buhk is 16 adrift of his team-mate after missing the Slovakia round due to a suspension.

WRT still took away some silverware, with Fabian Hamprecht and Stephane Ortelli inheriting third place in the #9 car. Roman Rusinov and Tomas Enge took fourth in the newly G-Drive Racing-entered Lamborghini, while Enzo Ide and Rene Rast beat fellow Audi drivers Niki Mayr-Melnhof and Markus Winkelhock to fifth.

Marc Basseng and Alessandro Latif were seventh in another Audi after seeing off BMW driver Alex Zanardi, although the Italian legend was only classified ninth after the penalty for Vanthoor and Ramos dropped them into the small gap between the two cars. Fabio Onidi and Giorgio Pantano completed the top ten in their Bhaitech McLaren.

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