K plus K takes Hungaroring win

Karl Wendlinger and Ryan Sharp recovered from two incidents to take the K plus K Saleen's second victory of the year in the Hungaroring round of the FIA GT Championship

K plus K takes Hungaroring win

The silver Saleen survived an early assualt from Alex Muller's Vitaphone Maserati, which had dropped back from pole to third at the start as Enrique Bernoldi shot from row two to the lead in the Sangari Corvette.

Muller tried to regain second into the first corner on lap four, but locked up, slewed past the second-placed Saleen and bounced off the leading Corvette back into Wendlinger's car, taking both onto the grass at the exit of the corner.

While Muller was forced to retire with suspension damage, Wendlinger was able to continue in eighth. With the lead pack running in close formation behind Bernoldi, Wendlinger rapidly made it back through to fourth, only to fall back to seventh when he went off the road again 12 laps later.

The Sangari Corvette lost ground at its first stop as damage from Muller's attack slowed the refuelling process, allowing the #1 Vitaphone Maserati of Michael Bartels and Andrea Bertolini to take the lead - although their time in front was shortlived as the car was penalised for breaking the pitlane speed limit.

The Maserati's delay and rapid post-pitstop times from Wendlinger's team-mate Sharp saw K plus K emerge in the lead once the first stops were complete, although the Saleen remained under threat from the third Vitaphone entry driven by Alessandro Pier Guidi and Matteo Bobbi.

The Italian duo managed to get in front at the final stops, but Wendlinger quickly demolished their 2.7s advantage and reclaimed the lead with nine minutes to go. Bertolini also passed Pier Guidi in the closing stages, with their second place putting the #1 Vitaphone crew back on top of the championship battle as rivals Mike Hezemans and Anthony Kumpen (PK Carsport Corvette) took a distant sixth.

Bernoldi and team-mate Roberto Streit recovered to take fourth, right on the #33 Maserati's tail. The Luc Alphand Corvette of Xavier Maassen and Thomas Biagi completed the top five.

Prospeed Porsche's Richard Westbrook and Emmanuel Collard had their GT2 pole disallowed to a restrictor issue, but still charged from the back of the field to class victory, with Westbrook passing AF Corse Ferrari's Gianmaria Bruni on the final lap of the race.

 Pos Cl Drivers Car Time/Gap 1. GT1 Wendlinger/Sharp Saleen S7 2h00m17.422s 2. GT1 Bertolini/Bartels Maserati MC 12 + 33.167s 3. GT1 Pier Guidi/Bobbi Maserati MC 12 + 33.506s 4. GT1 Bernoldi/Streit Corvette Z06 + 33.987s 5. GT1 Maassen/Biagi Corvette Z06 + 37.885s 6. GT1 Hezemans/Kumpen Corvette Z06 + 52.835s 7. GT1 Longin/Ruffier Corvette Z06 + 1 lap 8. GT2 Westbrook/Collard Porsche 911 GT3 + 2 laps 9. GT2 Bruni/Vilander Ferrari F430 + 2 laps 10. GT2 Ruberti/Malucelli Ferrari F430 + 2 laps 11. GT1 Kuppens/Leinders Ford GT + 2 laps 12. GT2 O'Young/Holzer Porsche 911 GT3 + 2 laps 13. GT2 Barba Lopez/Cadei Ferrari F430 + 3 laps 14. GT2 Bell/Kirkaldy Ferrari F430 + 3 laps 15. GT2 Russo/Perez Companc Ferrari F430 + 3 laps 16. GT2 Mullen/Niarchos Ferrari F430 + 3 laps 17. GT2 Ragginger/Lucchini Porsche 911 GT3 + 3 laps 18. GT2 Romanini/Heyer Ferrari F430 + 3 laps 19. GT2 Sugden/Ashburn Porsche 911 GT3 + 4 laps 20. GT1 Lacko/Nilsson Saleen S7 + 8 laps 21. GT1 Mutsch/Hirschi Ford GT + 8 laps 22. G2 Konopka/Studenic Saleen S7 + 19 laps Retirements: GT1 Lemeret/Hines Saleen S7 23 laps GT1 Muller/Ramos Maserati MC 12 5 laps 
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