GT-Masters Sachsenring: De Phillippi/Mie’s true chance to win the title
Connor de Phillippi/Christopher Mies win the first GT Masters race at Sachsenring – Nicolai Sylvest/Yelmer Buurman close in late safety car
From pole position to victory: Audi drivers Connor de Phillippi and Christopher Mies were unbeatable at the Sachsenring in the eleventh race of the ADAC GT master.Thanks to their second win of the season, they still have a chance to defend their title in the “League of Super Sportscars”:”We’re back where we belong,” cheers Mies.The other podium finishes went to the Mercedes-AMG duo Nicolai Sylvest/Yelmer Buurman and Indy Dontje/Marvin Kirchhöfer.
Pole setter de Phillippi defended the lead at the start, Sylvest improved to second place and put the leading Audi under pressure.In the exciting battle for the top, de Phillippi and Sylvest set themselves apart from their pursuers by more than ten seconds until the mandatory pit stops.After the driver changes de Phillippis partner Mies determined the happening.The Audi driver extended his lead on Buurman, who had taken over from Sylvest, to more than three seconds.
Although a late safety car phase to salvage Patric Niederhauser’s Audi put the field together once again, Mies then finished his ninth GT Masters race victory with flying colors.With the start-finish victory de Phillippi/Mies improved to third place in the championship with 96 points.With three races still to come and 33 points behind championship leader Jules Gounon, they can still dream of a successful title defence.
“The race went well,”laughed de Phillippi at the finish,”We started from pole position and made no mistakes.We had a small advantage already at the pit stop.The change of drivers went according to plan.Chris drove very well after that, only when the safety car came out at the end, it got tight again.Tomorrow’s race will be exciting again.But I’m sure Chris is doing such a good job again and we’ll get more points.Hopefully we’ll make it into the top five.”
Mies had everything under control in the second half of the race:”I was leading the race after the driver change and had a lead of about two seconds.Afterwards I was unlucky with the traffic, collected dirt with the tires and lost some time.Luckily, the safety car came out, so the tires could recover.”
The championship remains exciting
Sylvest and Buurman were beaten by 0.9 seconds.It was the first podium finish of the season for the Mercedes-AMG with starting number 20 and the first junior victory of the year for Sylvest.Local hero Kirchhöfer and Dontje took the third place in another Mercedes-AMG to the podium together with Dontje, to the delight of the Saxon fans.
Thanks to fourth place, runner-up Philipp Eng, who shared the BMW M6 with Nick Catsburg, scored ten points in the title fight.The Austrian is now 28 points behind leader Gounon, who finished in ninth place together with team-mate Renger van der Zande.Kelvin van der Linde and his younger brother Sheldon finished fifth in their Audi R8.Fourth-placed Kelvin van der Linde thus also maintained his ambitions for the title.
GT Masters debutants Alessio Picariello and Jamie Green finished sixth with their Audi ahead of Klaus Bachler and Alex MacDowall in the best Porsche 911.Patrick Assenheimer and Maximilian Götz improved from 18.Ten positions up to the finish line and ranked eighth.Porsche drivers Robert Renauer and Sven Müller secured the last point.