Mercedes-AMG at GT-Masters dress rehearsal in front
Three Mercedes-AMG GT3 determine the test drives at the GT Masters at Oschersleben – Lamborghini were still in front on the first day
The teams and drivers of the GT Masters have prepared for the new season with two days of testing at the Motorsport Arena Oschersleben. The best lap times were achieved by Mercedes-AMG. No less than three of the Swabian GT3 sports cars finished in the top three overall positions. The GT Masters from 13. till 15. April also in the Magdeburger Börde. All races will be broadcasted live and in full length by SPORT1.
Things are getting serious. Just two and a half weeks before the first run, all 23 teams used a total of five test sessions to gather important data and experience. 35 vehicles from eight brands were used. Nicolai Sylvest in the Mercedes-AMG of the Zakspeed team, which he shared with Formula 4 rookie Kim-Luis Schramm, became the fastest overall. The Dane’s best time in the fifth and final session was 1.23.320. “In the first sessions we had a little trouble with the set-up,” says Sylvest, “but before the last session we changed the car again and then it fit. In the end I drove with fresh tyres – and the result shows.”
The second fastest lap time in the test was set by Markus Pommer/Maximilian Götz in another Mercedes-AMG. Pommer not only achieved the second-best overall time of 1.23.548 minutes, but also the best time in the fourth session on Tuesday morning, “The test went really well. On the first day I had a little trouble with the conversion to the Mercedes-AMG, which I’m driving for the first time this year. In the evening I analyzed the data again and started the second day much more sorted out. I was fast with used tyres and things went even better with new ones. I’m quite comfortable with my car now. I’m confident for the season opener.”
Luca Stolz and Sebastian Asch (Team Zakspeed) completed the “Stern” trio at the top. They were 0.256 seconds short of the best time. With 1m 23.580s the trio Ivan Lukashevich, Nicolaj Möller Madsen and Jake Dennis in the fastest Audi R8 of GT Masters returnee Phoenix Racing achieved the fourth-best lap time of the test ahead of their brand colleagues Florian Spengler and Dries Vanthoor (TECE).
Monday was mainly dedicated to Lamborghini. Andrea Caldarelli and Mirko Bortolotti (Grasser) were not only the fastest on the opening day, but also in two of the first three sessions. The brothers Sheldon van der Linde and Kelvin van der Linde also set a best time on the first day in an Audi R8 from Land-Motorsport.
The Honda NSX GT3 celebrated its GT Masters premiere at Oschersleben. The Schubert Motorsport team and its young driver duo Giorgio Maggi and Christopher Dreyspring wanted to gain as much experience as possible with the Japanese vehicle during the test. With the 488 GT3 from HB Racing Ferrari returns to the GT Masters for the first time since 2012. In the Motorsport Arena Dominik Schwager and Luca Ludwig were busy with the red racer laps. In the fourth session they made it into the top 10 of lap times.
The results of the test days at Oschersleben
Test 1 (Monday)1. Andrea Caldarelli /Mirko Bortolotti, Grasser-Lamborghini, 1.23.5922. Rolf Ineichen/Christian Engelhart, Grasser-Lamborghini, 1.23.6463. Luca Stolz/Sebastian Asch, Zakspeed-Mercedes, 1.23.9474. Ezequiel Perez Companc/Franck Perera, Grasser-Lamborghini,1.24.2045. Robert Renauer, Herberth-Porsche, 1.24.396
Test 2 (Monday)1. Andrea Caldarelli /Mirko Bortolotti, Grasser-Lamborghini, 1.23.7422. Ivan Lukashevich/Nicolay Möller Madsen/Jake Dennis, Phoenix-Audi, 1.24.0953. Mikkel Jensen/Timo Scheider, Schnitzer-BMW, 1.24.1844. Indy Dontje/Maximilian Buhk, HTP-Mercedes, 1.24.2125. Philip Ellis/Max Hofer, Phoenix-Audi, 1.24.323
Test 3 (Monday)1. Sheldon van der Linde/Kelvin van der Linde, Land-Audi, 1.23.6822. Nicolaj Rogivue/Frederic Vervisch, Aust Motorsport-Audi, 1.24.0083. Markus Pommer/Maximilian Götz, HTP Motorsport-Mercedes, 1.24.0804. Andrea Caldarelli /Mirko Bortolotti, Grasser-Lamborghini, 1.24.1395. Adrien de Leener/Klaus Bachler, Team75 Bernhard, 1.24.262
Test 4 (Tuesday)1. Markus Pommer/Maximilian Götz, HTP-Mercedes, 1.23.5482. Ivan Lukashevich/Jake Dennis, Phoenix-Audi, 1.23.5803. Florian Spengler/Dries Vanthoor, TECE-Audi, 1.23.5894. Indy Dontje/Maximilian Buhk, HTP-Mercedes, 1.23.7205. Philip Ellis/Max Hofer, Phoenix-Audi, 1.23.769
Test 5 (Tuesday)1. Kim-Luis Schramm/Nicolai Sylvest, Zakspeed-Mercedes, 1.23.3202. Luca Stolz/Sebastian Asch, Zakspeed-Mercedes, 1.23.5763. Rolf Ineichen/Christian Engelhart, Grasser-Lamborghini, 1.23.6194. Ezequiel Perez Companc/Franck Perera, Grasser-Lamborghini, 1.23.9745. Mikkel Jensen/Timo Scheider, Schnitzer-BMW, 1.24.032
Combined best times Monday and Tuesday1. Kim-Luis Schramm/Nicolai Sylvest, Zakspeed-Mercedes, 1.23.3202. Markus Pommer/Maximilian Götz, HTP-Mercedes, 1.23.5483. Luca Stolz/Sebastian Asch, Zakspeed-Mercedes, 1.23.5764. Ivan Lukashevich/Jake Dennis, Phoenix-Audi, 1.23.5805. Florian Spengler/Dries Vanthoor, TECE-Audi, 1.23.589