Darren Turner and Stefan Mucke win at Beijing after Hexis Aston's late crash
|By Charles Bradley
||Saturday, September 10th 2011, 08:58 GMT
The Hexis duo of Christian Hohenadel/Andrea Piccini looked set to overcame their Young Driver Aston Martin stablemates in the championship race at Beijing's Goldenport track on Saturday until spinning out with a handful of minutes to go, which handed victory to Stefan Mucke and Darren Turner.
In a rain-affected and crash-strewn race, which started and finished under the safety car, the first corner of racing claimed the championship-contending All-Inkl Lamborghini of Marc Basseng and Markus Winkelhock, who were punted off the track along with the Hexis Aston of Stef Dusseldorp and Clivio Piccione.
The Young Driver Aston of Alex Muller/Tomas Enge led early on from the sister car of Turner and Mucke. The positions swapped in the pitstops, with Turner exiting ahead of Muller, but both were jumped by Piccini in the Hexis Aston.
The decisive moment of the race came with just five minutes to go, when Piccini spun off just as a safety car was called for due to Jeroen den Boer beaching his Corvette.
The Hexis car's exit was an added bonus for points leaders Lucas Luhr and Michael Krumm, who finished third in their JRM Nissan - a great recovery after Luhr binned it early on in qualifying, forcing them to start the day from 16th on the grid. Krumm/Luhr take an 11-point lead over Mucke and Turner into the finale in Argentina.
Maxime Martin led the race briefly in his Marc VDS Ford GT after a blinding opening stint, but his team-mate Bertrand Baguette just could not keep his pace, and dropped back to fourth by the finish. A great race for fifth was won by Enrique Bernoldi's Sumo Power-run Nissan after a frenetic duel with Nico Verdonck's Exim Corvette.
Results - 42 laps:
Pos Drivers Team/Car Time/Gap
1. Mucke/Turner Young Driver Aston 1h00m23.990s
2. Enge/Muller Young Driver Aston + 0.972s
3. Luhr/Krumm JRM Nissan + 1.593s
4. Martin/Baguette Marc VDS Ford + 2.726s
5. Rossi/Verdonck Exim Corvette + 2.955s
6. Catsburg/Bernoldi Sumo Power Nissan + 3.387s
7. Westbrook/Dumbreck JRM Nissan + 3.723s
8. Campbell-Walter/Brabham Sumo Power Nissan + 4.838s
9. Lauck/Leuenberger DKR Lamborghini + 6.160s
Hohenadel/Piccini Hexis Aston 37 laps
Tung/den Boer Exim Corvette 37 laps
Hennerici/Leinders Marc VDS Ford 25 laps
Leclerc/Clairay Belgian Ford 21 laps
Bruck/Kennard DKR Lamborghini 18 laps
Schwager/Pastorelli All-Inkl Lamborghini 7 laps
Hirschi/Nygaard Belgian Ford 4 laps
Dusseldorp/Piccione Hexis Aston 3 laps
Basseng/Winkelhock All-Inkl Lamborghini 3 laps