Nurburgring Blancpain Endurance: McLaren wins, Nissan takes title

The Von Ryan Racing McLaren of Kevin Estre, Rob Bell and Shane van Gisbergen won the Blancpain Endurance Series finale at the Nurburgring as Nissan's Alex Buncombe, Katsumasa Chiyo and Wolfgang Reip claimed the title

Nurburgring Blancpain Endurance: McLaren wins, Nissan takes title

Using an off-schedule pit strategy, Estre assumed the lead of the race in the final hour when the leading cars were forced to pit under a safety car and cruised home to secure a second win of the season.

Buncombe, meanwhile, succumbed to late pressure from Steven Kane but was able to hold off Laurens Vanthoor for the final podium position in the closing laps to seal the championship by three points.

Craig Dolby squeezed his Nissan GT-R Nismo up the inside of Adrian Zaugg's Lamborghini at Turn 1 at the start of the race, as Chiyo made a tentative start and slotted into fourth after receiving a tap.

Dolby raced off into the distance as a queue began to form behind Zaugg, but the pack closed up when the safety car made its first appearance to cover the recovery of Garry Kondakov's Ferrari 458.

Dolby held the lead until his pitstop, but having handed the reigns over to Sean Walkinshaw the Nissan GT-R dropped down the order to a net fourth, with Chiyo perfecting his in-lap and handover to allow Reip to emerge in the lead of the race.

A strong stint from Reip saw him build a healthy lead at the front but, just like Dolby's earlier, that advantage was wiped out with the deployment of a second safety car when Harold Primat - making the final appearance of his racing career - was punted off by Stef Dusseldorp.

With Estre having earlier jumped into the car at his team's second pitstop, he wound up third when those in front pitted, and that became first when Maxime Soulet and Yelmer Buurman served their stops, allowing him to ease home in the final hour to win by 14.183 seconds.

Having been frustrated for a number of laps, Kane finally found a way past Buncombe in the closing stages when he tapped the GT-R driver through the Arena section, but his time ahead was short-lived as he was promptly ordered to hand the position back.

He made a move stick in the final ten minutes after sneaking up the inside of Buncombe along the pit straight, but it came too late for him to offer a challenge to Estre as he and Bentley co-drivers Guy Smith and Andy Meyrick also fell short in the drivers' championship.

Buncombe clung on to third and with it the championship ahead of a charging Vanthoor, who in turn secured the WRT Audi squad the teams' title by three points over the Bentley M-Sport team.

Pro-Am honours went to the Emil Frey Racing Jaguar of Lorenz Frey, Gabriele Gardel and Fredy Barth, with Gardel narrowly holding off the AF Corse Ferrari of Cedric Sbirrazuoli.

RESULTS - 88 LAPS:

Pos Class Driver Team Car Gap
1 Pro S.Gisbergen, R.Bell, K.Estre Von Ryan Racing McLaren 3h00m18.820s
2 Pro G.Smith, A.Meyrick, S.Kane Bentley Team M-Sport Bentley 14.183s
3 Pro W.Reip, A.Buncombe, K.Chiyo Nissan GT Academy Team RJN Nissan 19.161s
4 Pro R.Frijns, J-K.Vernay, L.Vanthoor Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi 19.650s
5 Pro M.Buhk, M.Soulet, A.Soucek Bentley Team M-Sport Bentley 33.393s
6 Pro G.Venturini, A.Zaugg, M.Bortolotti GRT Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini 37.386s
7 Pro C.Mies, M.Molina, G.Guilvert Sainteloc Audi 38.612s
8 Pro S.Walkinshaw, M.Plowman, C.Dolby Always Evolving Motorsport Nissan 45.368s
9 Pro A.Al Faisal, H.Haupt, Y.Buurman Black Falcon Mercedes 58.884s
10 Pro A.Al Harthy, R.Butcher, S.Mucke Oman Racing Team Aston Martin 1m03.406s
11 Pro S.Richelmi, F.Stippler, S.Ortelli Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi 1m09.391s
12 Pro F.Salaquarda, M.Bonanomi, F.Vervisch ISR Audi 1m16.014s
13 Pro A.Palmer, F.Babini, J.Mul GRT Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini 1m27.352s
14 Pro R.Salikhov, R.Renauer, N.Siedler Rinaldi Racing Ferrari 1m27.636s
15 Pro K.Heyer, M.Toril, N.Sylvest Rowe Racing Mercedes 1m28.702s
16 Pro-Am L.Frey, G.Gardel, F.Barth Emil Frey Racing Jaguar 1m32.085s
17 Pro-Am A.De Leener, C.Sbirrazzuoli AF Corse Ferrari 1m32.399s
18 Pro-Am M.Broniszewski, A.Bonacini, M.Lyons Kessel Racing Ferrari 1m40.649s
19 Pro D.Juncadella, N.Bastian, S.Dusseldorp Rowe Racing Mercedes 1m44.170s
20 Pro-Am A.Karachev, D.Waszek, I.Dontje GT Russian Team Mercedes 1m52.225s
21 Pro F.Fraga, C.Bueno, S.Jimenez AH Competicoes Team Brasil BMW 1m58.200s
22 Pro-Am P.Wilson, S.Leonard, M.Meadows Leonard Motorsport AMR Aston Martin 1 Lap
23 Pro-Am A.Vasiliev, K.Al-Azhari, M.Asmer GT Russian Team Mercedes 1 Lap
24 Pro-Am O.Morley, S.Johnston, M.Engel Black Falcon Mercedes 1 Lap
25 Pro V.Brito, A.Abreu, M.Stumpf AH Competicoes Team Brasil BMW 1 Lap
26 Pro-Am G.Vannelet, A.Santamato, E.Guibbert Sport Garage Ferrari 1 Lap
27 Pro-Am M.Koebolt, S.Bottemanne, P.Schothorst Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi 1 Lap
28 Pro-Am D.Modell, A.McCaig, O.Bryant Ecurie Ecosse BMW 1 Lap
29 Pro-Am R.Ratcliffe, L.Mowle, J.Osborne Triple Eight Racing BMW 1 Lap
30 Pro M.Lee, S.Thong, M.Winkelhock Phoenix Racing Audi 1 Lap
31 Pro-Am E.Dermont, H.Hassid, F.Perera TDS Racing BMW 1 Lap
32 Pro-Am P.Perazzini, M.Cioci, F.Guedes AF Corse Ferrari 1 Lap
33 Pro-Am S.Parrow, D.Schwager Black Pearl Racing by Rinaldi Ferrari 1 Lap
34 Pro-Am D.Cameron, M.Griffin AF Corse Ferrari 1 Lap
35 Am F.Barthez, A.Pons Akka ASP Team Ferrari 1 Lap
36 Am K.Ojjeh, O.Grotz Boutsen Ginion Racing BMW 1 Lap
37 Am J.Haring, D.Konstantinou, F.Schmickler Attempto Racing Porsche 2 Laps
38 Pro B.Senna, A.Q.-Hobbs, A.Parente Von Ryan Racing McLaren 2 Laps
39 Pro-Am B.Ellis, E.Hankey, S.Yoluc TF Sport Aston Martin 2 Laps
40 Pro-Am D.Hallyday, C.Hamon, L.Martins Sebastien Loeb Racing Audi 2 Laps
41 Pro-Am D.Andersen, M.Jensen Insight Racing Denmark Ferrari 2 Laps
42 Am S.Earle, M.Zanuttini, L.Talbot Kessel Racing Ferrari 2 Laps
43 Am I.Loggie, J.Westwood Team Parker Racing Audi 2 Laps
44 Pro-Am L.Machitski, T.Sardarov, J.Cocker Team Russia by Barwell BMW 2 Laps
45 Am P.Ehret, A.Mattschull Car Collection Motorsport Mercedes 2 Laps
46 Am J-L.Beaubelique, M.Ricci Akka ASP Team Ferrari 2 Laps
47 Am P-E.Bordet, A.Viron, E.Orgeval Delahaye Racing Team Porsche 3 Laps
48 Pro-Am G.Lallement, G.Demoustier, M.Rostan Sainteloc Audi 4 Laps
49 Pro-Am D.Allemann, P.Schmidt, K.Wendlinger Car Collection Motorsport Mercedes 20 Laps
50 Am G.Kondakov, A.Moiseev, R.Ragazzi AF Corse Ferrari 21 Laps
51 Pro-Am T.Kemenater, H.Hedman, E.Julian DragonSpeed Ferrari 25 Laps
- Am P.Hirschi, C.Kelders, J-L.Blanchemain Classic & Modern Racing BMW Retirement
- Pro H.Primat, M.Parisy, V.Abril Bentley Team HTP Bentley Retirement
- Pro-Am G.Paletou, R.Sanchez, H.Tincknell Nissan GT Academy Team RJN Nissan Retirement
- Pro T.Vautier, M.M.Traffort, A.P.Guidi Akka ASP Team Ferrari Retirement


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