Challenging Weekend for the Girls in ADAC GT4
Updated: Sep 24, 2020
It was a double-points weekend for Claudia Hürtgen, but also very tough weekend for Patricija Stalidzane and racing twins Alesia and Jacqueline Kreutzpointner, as the second round of ADAC GT4 at Hockenheim finished with a double DNF for the other racing ladies.
It was quickly clear that it could have been KTM's time to shine in Hockenheim for the second round of the ADAC GT4 Germany championship, as Florian Janits had brought his KTM X-Bow GT4 EVO by True Racing on pole for Race 1, but a penalty dropped him and Reinhard Kofler down to P12 for the start. But the KTM duo were quick to make up positions and, after a few laps, Janits was already back to third place.
Up in the lead Gabriele Piana (Hofor Racing by Bonk Motorsport) pulled away and opened a gap of 13 seconds until the pit window opened. But could not consider himself safe either - after handing over the BMW to Michael Schrey, Kofler caught up with him dramatically and passed him to advance into the lead of the race vefore the chequered flag fell to give victory to the KTM squad, ahead of Piana/Schrey. The second place was also hardly contested, as Nicolaj Møller Madsen - racing alongside Jan Kasperlik - passed Schrey, but was later penalized due to track limits infringement and dropped down to the final step of the podium.
After the start, several cars had a trip to the gravel and spun, but all contenders were able to continue the race. Levi O´Dey from KÜS TEAM75 Bernhard was the first driver who was forced to end his race early: after some contacts and losing some parts of his Porsche, the radiator was ultimately too damaged to carry on and he retired from the race. The second Porsche of Fetzer and Sturm (Team Allied-Racing) ended his race early as well.
For Claudia Hürtgen (with Sebastian von Gartzen/Hofor Racing by Bonk Motorsport) it was a special fight in the front-runner positions with Julien Apothéloz/Luca Trefz (MANN-FILTER Team HTP-WINWARD) for P5. Both crews swapped positions several times, but it was ultimately the Mercedes of Trefz to come up on top a few laps before the finish line.
The other teams fielding female drivers were definitely not as lucky: Aleksey Sizov - Patricija Stalidzane's teammate at Dörr Motorsport - parked his damaged McLaren on the side of the track after starting from the back of the field due to a strange issue, as they were seemingly too late on the grid. Sizov overtook many cars to P9, but then was forced to retire with a cooling water leak and an overheating engine before Patricija could even get in the driving seat.
Jacqueline Kreutzpointer brought her BMW M4 GT4 back to the pits with a front tyre damage and parked her car as well: "No words needed... A day to forget!Tomorrow is a new day!", commented Jacqueline about her DNF on Saturday.
One day later, the KTM of Kofler and Janits set the fastest lap again in the qualifying session valid for Race 2 - this time, the True Racing drivers could indeed take the start from the first row of the grid but, as the lights went out, they lost the leadership to Møller Madsen in the Porsche. The fight, though, wasn't over yet.
In the pits, Janits/Kofler lost one more position due to a longer standing time for their victory on Saturday, but they passed Hugo Sasse (T3-HRT-Motorsport) on track and went on a hunt for the leader Kasperlik, who had took over the Porsche from Møller Madsen. The battle went down to the wire, as the Austrian driver passed the Dane and took an outstanding double victory for True Racing and KTM at the Hockenheimring. The podium was completed by Møller Madsen/Kasperlik and Apothéloz/Trefz.
Again, famous German driver Claudia Hürtgen and van Gartzen were the best team with a female driver in their lineup to finish in the points, in P9.
After a contact between the Ginetta from Falkenbach/Pirou (Team Piro Sports Caffe d'Italia) and the BMW of Jacqueline Kreutzpointner, both teams had to retire. Again an unfortunate DNF for the racing twins. "Toughest weekend I had so far.... we had a strong pace but couldn't finished it.", said Alesia. "But this is also a part of the sport I'm so passionate about. We will come back even stronger!"
Patricija Stalidzane and Sizov had problems again, with some engine issues in qualifying that forced them to the back of the grid for race 2. After the driver change from Stalidzane to Sizov, the Russian driver sped at the pit exit and received a drive-trough penalty, which dropped them down the field. The team retired the car on the last lap of the race but the #59 McLaren was classified P16.
The next round will take place from 2nd to 4th October at the Sachsenring, when the four female racers will be back for their third weekend in the ADAC GT4 Germany.