The final FIA GT1 World Championship will be decided on Sunday afternoon at Donington Park, with only three points between the two protagonist teams: Markus Winkelhock/Marc Basseng and Yelmer Buurman/Michael Bartels.
Munnich Mercedes SLS duo Winkelhock and Basseng extended their points lead from one to three points in Saturday's qualifying race by finishing in fifth position.
Rivals Buurman and Bartels trailed in ninth in their Vita4One BMW, after Bartels punctured a tyre against the second Munnich Mercedes, which was playing tailgunner for its lead car.
"We found ourselves in a worst-case scenario," admitted Buurman, after he lost out at the start to Winkelhock, who started three places behind him but rocketed past into Redgate.
"We have a very quick car, but it's the slowest on the straights. After that, their second car had one job, and one job alone: to keep us behind."
Basseng will start the final race of the season from fifth place, with Bartels in ninth. The points system is in increments of two from fourth place down, so the Bartels/Buurman BMW is likely to have to finish two places ahead of its title rival.
"It's important not to put pressure on ourselves," said Winkelhock. "We'll just have to see where we end up. We are lucky to have our sister car with us, but our pace wasn't really there yesterday."
Added complications are that Basseng reported a very long brake pedal in Saturday's race, as the Mercedes is the heaviest car in the field, and the weather at Donington on Sunday morning has featured a number of brief, but very sharp, showers - with more rain predicted for race-time.