Carrie Schreiner starts GTC campaign with two podiums
At her return to GTC, Carrie Schreiner was back on the podium with a third place overall in both the endurance and the sprint races at Lausitzring.
Carrie Schreiner returned behind the wheel of a GT3 car at the second round of the GTC-Race series at Lausitzring - claiming two podiums finishes.
The young German racer - an experienced GT driver with an important resumé in national and international competition - had missed the season opener at Hockenheimring due to a highly busy 2023 schedule, which also includes her return to single seater in the newly-founded F1 Academy championship.
Schreiner is the reigning champion of the GTC GT60 by Pirelli in the GT3 class, having secured the championship in the endurance competition with very a consistent season in 2022. While re-acclimating with a Formula 4 car after a 7-year hiatus, Schreiner announced that she would return to GTC with the Land Motorsport Audi R8 LMS GT3, alongside her life partner Peter Terting. Schreiner and Terting have previously shared the wheel in selected races of GT Winter Series, 24H Series and NLS.
After the first three round of the brand-new all female championship F1 Academy, the young German has made significant steps forward - but her return to GT3 represented her opportunity to step back on the podium. And she did not disappoint.
Schreiner qualified in third place for the 60-minute GT60 by Pirelli endurance race and in fourth position for Sunday's sprint race. Schreiner and Terting also completed most of the free practice sessions within the top-three, as a further proof of the duo's pace around the 3,478m long Lausitzring.
Initially delayed for oil on track, the endurance race on Saturday got underway with Finn Zulauf on overall pole position (Car Collection Motorsport Audi R8 GT3), ahead of Julian Hanses (W&S Motorsport Mercedes AMG GT3) and Carrie Schreiner, who was behind the wheel for the opening stint.
Schreiner is not the only female driver in the championship, as Vivien Schöllhorn and Sally Erdmann are competing full time in the GT4 category. Schöllhorn, at her second season in the series, shares the #44 Audi R8 GT4 with her father Rudolf, while Erdmann is at her first season in GT racing and is teaming up with Max Zschuppe in the #69 Audi R8 GT4 by Seyffarth Motorsport.
Zulauf had a perfect start off the line, while Schreiner challenged Arnold for second place overall; Arnold, though, quickly chased down Zulauf in the lead, putting pressure on the Car Collection Audi.
In GT4, Vivien Schöllhorn was up to P12 in class after starting from P15 in class, followed by the Seyffarth Audi of Edrmann's teammate Zschuppe, who started P17. They both would gain one more place over the first ten minutes of racing, while Jan Springbob led the GT4 class - the most crowded category in GTC this year. Zschuppe, though, lost two places to Horrell and Bartels mid-way through his stint.
Zulauf and Arnold continued to battle, separated by a few tenths; while Schreiner couldn't get closer to the top two, the German racer was steadily in third place, with a safe margin to the following GT3 car of Bleifuss (KÜS Team Bernhard Porsche).
Schreiner pitted on lap 18 for the mandatory stop and handed over the #3 Land Motorsport Audi R8 LMS GT3 to Peter Terting from third overall. The GT4 entries also started their driver changes but Vivien Schöllhorn went longer in her driving shift, before she handed over to her father Rudolf from ninth in GT4. Max Zschuppe was in pit lane on the same lap, as Sally Erdmann rejoined in P11 in class.
After the round of pit stops, Julian Hanses preceded Christer Jöns and Peter Terting in the GT3 class; Rudolf Schöllhorn had fallen to P13 in GT4, just one position ahead of Sally Erdmann - who gained a few seconds to the car ahead but couldn't close an over 20 second gap.
Sally would lose 14th place to Ralf Glatzel with 13 minutes to go, and was down to P16 in the closing minutes but, when a few GT4 cars hit trouble in the final laps, Sally made the most out of the situation and gained two places.
15 seconds behind the leader, Peter Terting ran a comfortable race in third place, never under pressure from the KÜS Team Bernhard Porsche. Schreiner and Terting were therefore third overall and second in the GT3 PRO class, in Carrie's first podium of the season.
After a tightly-fought first stint, the Car Collection Audi of Zulauf/Hanses was able to pull away and won over the #65 W&S Motorsport Mercedes AMG of Jöns/Arnold.
Rudolf and Vivien Schöllhorn completed the endurance 60 minute race in P12 in GT4, while the Seyffarth Motorsport duo of Sally Erdman/Max Zschuppe was P14 in class.
Schreiner, Schöllhorn and Erdmann were all on the grid for the first sprint race on Sunday, from fourth overall, 16th and 18th in GT4 respectively.
Schreiner held fourth at the start, slotting behind Julian Hanses, Moritz Wiskirchen and Luca Arnold. Schöllhorn gained places in the GT4 class and moved up to P14, while Erdmann held P18. A contact further down the field took out the GT4 entries of Tom Spitzemberger and Bernd Scheible.
Wiskirchen and Arnold battled for the second spot in GT3, with Schreiner - just a few seconds down the road - not close enough to join the fight. Hanses meanwhile had checked out, unchallenged by the other GT3 cars.
Vivien Schöllhorn dropped from 14th to 15th in GT4, where she would remain for the rest of the race.
Arnold continued to put pressure on Wiskirchen - but there was also exciting action in the GT4 class, with a superb battle for the lead between a four-car train: Hartling managed to find a way past Abee with 18 minutes to go.
The safety car was deployed with 13 minutes left on the clock due debris on the main straight. Luca Arnold had just made a move stick on Wiskirchen - but his pass was ultimately deemed to have happened already under yellow and he therefore received a drive through penalty. With the safety car on track, Schreiner could close back again on the top three for the final 3 minutes of green flag racing.
Hanses pulled away once again at the restart and took a comfortable win in the sprint race; Luca Arnold opted to take his penalty on the final lap - and thus received a further 30 second penalty, which left the #65 Mercedes in 19th place overall - and promoted Carrie Schreiner to third.
With two podiums out of two competitions - in both the endurance and the sprint races - Carrie Schreiner had a very good start of her GTC Race season, jumping from GT3 and Formula 4 machinery with ease in her busy 2023.
Having missed the first round, Schreiner is now sixth in the GT60 by Pirelli championship standings and eighth in the Sprint championship.
Vivien Schöllhorn was P14 in GT4 after a solid race, ahead of Sally Erdmann in P18.
The next round of the GTC-Race series is scheduled for 30th June to 2nd July at the Nürburgring.