PK Chevy wins eventful FIA GT race

PK Carsport drivers Mike Hezemans and Anthony Kumpen claimed a first FIA GT Championship victory of the season for the Chevrolet Corvette in an incident-package race at Oschersleben

PK Chevy wins eventful FIA GT race

Hezemans, who started only seventh, emerged in the lead after a first-corner incident delayed the top three qualifiers. The Dutchman subsequently pitted at just the right time as light rain intensified, allowing team-mate Kumpen to resume with a 15-second lead.

Kumpen was able to extend his lead over Miguel Ramos to 25s before the Vitaphone Maserati driver was overtaken by his team boss, Michael Bartels. The reigning FIA GT champion was able to halve that advantage before handing back to Andrea Bertolini, but PK's decision to leave Kumpen out until the final 10 minutes of the two-hour race sealed the victory for the stalwart FIA GT squad.

"We had no problems whatsoever," said Hezemans, "it turned out to be an easy win."

Ramos and pole winner Alex Muller finished third despite the former dropping right to the back of the field after the clash at the first corner. The accident happened when the Maserati driver, Karl Wendlinger and Xavier Maassen arrived at the right-hander three abreast.

Muller brought the car back up to second in the space of 33 laps, but a conservative stint from Ramos after an early off in the rain meant they could finish no higher than third behind their Vitaphone team-mates.

Wendlinger and K plus K Saleen team-mate Ryan Sharp also looked set for a decent result despite their delay.

The Austrian clawed his way back to third only to spin down to fifth as the rain started to fall. Sharp was subsequently the fastest man on the track in the wet despite windscreen wiper failure, but the combination of no wipers and bent front suspension, almost certainly the result of a clash between Sharp and Ramos, resulted in Wendlinger freefalling down the order after retaking the wheel of the car.

The Saleen then retired on the final lap when the damaged left front suspension failed.

GT2 honours went to Gianmaria Bruni and Toni Vilander in the AF Corse Ferrari 430 GT. A strong stint from wet weather expert Vilander cemented the reigning champions' first class win of the season.

Pos Cl Drivers Car Time/Gap 1. GT1 Hezemans/Kumpen Corvette Z06 2h00m42.748s 2. GT1 Bertolini/Bartels Maserati MC12 + 9.207s 3. GT1 Muller/Ramos Maserati MC12 + 35.696s 4. GT1 Longin/Ruffier Corvette Z06 + 1m47.676s 5. GT1 Maassen/Biagi Corvette Z06 + 1 lap 6. GT1 Leinders/Kuppens Ford GT + 1 lap 7. GT1 Mutsch/Hennerici Ford GT + 1 lap 8. GT1 Hines/Lemeret Saleen S7 + 2 laps 9. GT2 Bruni/Vilander Ferrari F430 + 2 laps 10. GT2 Holzer/Edwards Porsche 911 GT3 + 2 laps 11. GT2 Mucke/Makowiecki Aston Martin V8 + 2 laps 12. GT2 Mullen/Niarchos Ferrari F430 + 3 laps 13. GT2 Ragginger/Lucchini Porsche 911 GT3 + 3 laps 14. GT1 Krumm/Turner Nissan GT-R + 3 laps 15. GT1 Wendlinger/Sharp Saleen S7 + 4 laps 16. GT2 Bell/Kirkaldy Ferrari F430 + 4 laps 17. GT2 Bergmeister/Ashburn Porsche 911 GT3 + 5 laps 18. GT2 Barba Lopez/Cadei Ferrari F430 + 7 laps 19. GT2 Heyer/Romanini Ferrari F430 + 8 laps Retirements: GT1 Monfardini/Mowlem Saleen S7 42 laps GT2 Russo/Perez Companc Ferrari F430 18 laps GT2 Ruberti/Malucelli Ferrari F430 17 laps GT2 Collard/Westbrook Porsche 911 GT3 16 laps GT1 Dominguez/Lacko Saleen S7 12 laps 
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