Navarra FIA GT: Sebastien Loeb claims first championship race win

Sebastien Loeb took his first championship race win in the FIA GT Series at Navarra, as he and Alvaro Parente led the sister Sebastien Loeb Racing McLaren home for a one-two finish

Navarra FIA GT: Sebastien Loeb claims first championship race win

Loeb led from the start, and while initially under pressure from team-mate Andreas Zuber, he kept the lead in order for Parente to consolidate the result in the second stint of the race.

Loeb and Parente had won the qualifying race three times this season, but were yet to finish on the podium in the main event. The result now moves them up to fourth in the Pro Cup standings.

The Frank Stippler and Edward Sandstrom WRT Audi finished in third place, and in doing so slashed their deficit to points leaders and team-mates Stephane Ortelli and Laurens Vanthoor.

Ortelli was spun to the back of the field on the opening lap, after contact with Allam Khodair's Team Brazil BMW.

Vanthoor recovered the car to be right on the tail of Sandstrom's Audi, but brake failure forced him into the pits, leaving them in last position.

Going into the final round in Baku, the points difference between the two cars is only five points.

Sergei Afanasiev and Andreas Simonsen controlled the Pro-Am race once again, extending their championship advantage and finishing in fourth position overall, ahead of the Oliver Jarvis/Niki Mayr-Melnhof WRT Audi.

Wolfgang Reip put in a series of great overtaking moves to finish second in Pro-Am, after team-mate Steve Doherty had been running as high as third overall in the opening stint.

Despite a drive-through penalty for punting the Caca Bueno Team Brazil BMW off the road, Stef Dusseldorp and Alon Day brought their HTP Mercedes SLS home in seventh place, but Day is now out of the running for the title.

Atila Abreu finished eighth for Team Brazil, bringing the BMW he shares with Sergio Jimenez home ahead of the third place Pro-Am Audi of Cesar Campanico and Michael Ammermuller.

Hari Proczyk lost considerable ground in the Pro-Am standings to the Afanasiev/Simonsen Mercedes, as he and Gerhard Tweraser could only manage 10th, after starting their GRT Lamborghini from third on the grid.

Results - 36 laps:

Pos  Drivers                Team/Car                 Time/Gap
 1.  Loeb/Parente           Loeb McLaren         1h01m29.083s
 2.  Zuber/Parisy           Loeb McLaren             +21.087s
 3.  Stippler/Sandstrom     WRT Audi                 +29.855s
 4.  Simonsen/Afanasiev     HTP Mercedes             +33.742s
 5.  Mayr-Melnhof/Jarvis    WRT Audi                 +40.601s
 6.  Doherty/Reip           RJN Nissan               +41.760s
 7.  Day/Dusseldorp         HTP Mercedes             +50.599s
 8.  Abreu/Jimenez          Brazil BMW               +52.220s
 9.  Campanico/Ammermuller  Novadriver Audi        +1m03.264s
10.  Tweraser/Proczyk       GRT Lamborghini        +1m12.547s
11.  Buncombe/Ordonez       RJN Nissan             +1m13.931s
12.  Khodair/Bueno          Brazil BMW             +1m35.720s
13.  Haupt/Matzke           HTP Mercedes           +1m38.379s
14.  Sdanewitsch/Rugolo     AF Ferrari                 +1 lap
15.  Ortelli/Vanthoor       WRT Audi                  +7 laps
16.  Cunha/Stumpf           Rodrive Lamborghini       +7 laps

Retirements:

     Rosina/Basseng         Reiter Lamborghini        25 laps
     Chandhok/Buurman       Vita4One BMW              19 laps
     Demoustier/Tappy       Von Ryan McLaren           9 laps
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Navarra FIA GT: Loeb and Parente's McLaren wins qualifying race
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