A crazy Weekend for the Ladies in BMW M2 Cup at Red Bull Ring
It was a crazy weekend for the ladies at the Red Bull Ring interrupted by the story of track limits for the whole field. Sophia Menzenbach and Mery Czepiel scored their best season results in race 2 with P5 and P6, while Jacqueline and Alesia Kreutzpointner were haunted by bad luck.
Round 7 and 8 of the BMW M2 Cup lead the series to the Red Bull Ring in Austria to battle for the next victories on the beautiful track. With a length of 4,318 kilometres and some huge elevation changes the fans on track could see a great show by the 16 drivers.
Again Jacqueline and Alesia Kreutzpointer, Sophia Menzenbach and Mery Czepiel were set to battle for points on the track while Carrie Schreiner missed this round as well as she was driving at Imola with Italian GT.
The free practice on Friday was led by allrounder Michael Schrey ahead of Colin Caresani and Louis Henkefend. Best female driver was Czepiel with P12 followed by the trio Jacqueline and Alesia Kreutzpointer in P14 and P15 and Menzenbach in P16.
For race 1 it was Theo Oeverhaus who scored the pole position ahead of Davit Kajaia and Fabian Kreim.
And it was Oeverhaus who had a great start, stayed in the lead and tried to pull away from the rest of the field immediately. As the leading group tried to set an early pace, the field behind was separeted in fighting groups. One of them included Czepiel who was in a good 11th place as her right front tire deflated and she was forced to go to the pits for a new tire.
Alesia Kreutzpointner had a short shocking moment as Michael von Zabiensky lost his car on the curbs and slipped across the track right before her number 12 BMW without touching her luckily and came back onto the track after the short side trip into the gravel to continue the race.
The battles across the track were interrupted by a saftey car phase as Owega missed the braking point, slipped over the curbs and lost the car. He spun across the track and hit the barrier at the other side and wasn´t able to continue the race.
After the #7 car of Owega was recoverd the field of the BMW M2 Cup saw one last green sprint lap to the finish line. Oeverhaus still leading ahead of Colin Caresani and Davit Kajaia with Jacqueline Kreutzpointner P9, Menzenbacher P11 ahead of Alesia Kreutzpointer in P12 and Czepiel in P14.
It was a clean start and some battles for positions with Oeverhaus taking the chequered flag first ahead of Caresani and Louis Henkefend, who passed Kajaia for the last podium spot. Jacqueline Kreutzpointer crossed the finish line in P8 as best female driver.
"The Red Bull Ring is one of my favourite circuits. The starting field there was very close together in terms of times. But i was able to keep up with the pace! The race on Saturday went well for me. I got through without any mistakes and a very consistent pace", Jacqueline said us.
Behind her Alesia Kreutzpointer finished in P11, Menzenbach in P12 and Czepiel in P14.
The grid for the second race of the weekend saw Oeverhaus on pole ahead of Kajaia and Tom Nittel, son of former WRC pilot Uwe Nittel. Jacqueline Kreutzpointner, again best of the female drivers, followed in P11 ahead of Czepiel in 12th, Alesia in 14th and Menzenbach in P16.
And Oeverhaus again was strong from the pole into the lead and pulled away fast. Jacqueline Kreutzpointer had a good start and was on P9 after the first lap and showed again a strong pace the whole weekend. Meanwhile close battles through the field kept the drivers busy for the first lap of the race.
Mery Czepiel again had bad luck as Michael von Zabiensky set his car next to hers in the corner, hit her as she closed the gap and spun her around. Von Zabiensky saved his car back to the pits, but retired there. Czepiel was able to continue the race with a big gap to the car in front of her.
And the hard battles went on as Kreim and Kajaia made contact and sent the latter in the gravels what called out the first saftey car phase of the race.
For the restart Oeverhaus led ahead of Nittel and Caresani, while the female trio Jacqueline and Alesia Kreutzpointner and Menzenbach followed in P9 to 11 and Czepiel in 13th. And the restart was no problem for Overhaus and he pulled away from the field again.
A second saftey car phase followed as Alesia Kreutzpointer was stuck into the gravel after a spin.
The race was green again with less than 4 minutes to go and Oeverhaus confirmed his great performance as he had a great restart and pulled away from his follower with no problems to take the chequered flag first. He won ahead of Nittel and Schrey on the track, but the race wasn´t over.
After the race many penalties dropped from the race direction. First of all the podium got sorted what confirmed Oeverhaus as winner, but behind him Henkefend was the new 2nd and Nicolas Hancke 3rd.
It was crazy as the final results were offical. On track Jacqueline Kreutzpointer was the best female driver on P7 followed by Menzenbach in P9 and Czepiel in P12. But after the penalties were given it was Menzenbach in P5 as best female driver and with her best result this entire season. Czepiel pushed forward to P6 and Jacqueline Kreutzpointer suffered from the penalties as well as she dropped back to P11 and outside the points.
"Unfortunately, I was very unlucky on Sunday. On the second lap, I was able to overtake two other drivers in Turn 4, but another driver overlooked me and crashed into my suspension. After that, my car was broken. I still wanted to finish the race to get at least a few points. In the end, I had to accept a time penalty, which put me far behind", Jacqueline was not happy with the result. "Of course, I was very disappointed by the race. I could have been much further ahead. But I am not giving up. It's nice to see the potential I have. That's why I will continue to work hard."
The next round will take place in Assen from 17th to 19th September.