Perfectly prepared and with the podium in sight, the two SPS Mercedes AMG GT3, starting number 20 with Valentin Pierburg and Tom Onslow-Cole as well as starting number 10 Miguel Ramos and Fabrizio Crestani competed in the 2nd round of the International GT Open.
A strong performance was already apparent during the free practice on Friday. Both cars were always in the front third of the field. On Saturday, the two AMG Mercedes entered the first qualifying session. More than sovereign Tom Onslow-Cole placed the Richard Mille Mercedes on the pole position in the overall and class classification with the fastest lap time ever driven by a GT3 in Hockenheim (1:36.759). Miguel Ramos set the #10 to P7 in the Pro class.
In the first race everything went according to plan and both driver duos were able to collect important championship points. Fabrizio Crestani finished on position 9 in the overall standings and P6 in the class standings. Valentin Pierburg and Tom Onslow-Cole were rewarded for their first class performance with P2 in the class (P3 overall).
On Sunday, in Qualifying for the second race, a crucial incident prevented the pole position for #10 from being achieved. Due to a collision of the #10 with a McLaren through no fault of Fabrizio Crestani’s own – the resulting puncture and impaired aerodynamics – Fabrizio Crestani was unable to set a best time. The previous lap time was still enough for 8th place – at the same time the best Mercedes in the grid.
Already at the beginning of the race the drivers delivered exciting duels in a tight field. Despite the turbulent qualifying some places could be made up. With P4 in the class and in the overall standings for the Vodafone Mercedes (#10) a place on the podium was missing, but in the championship standings the positioning still means very good points. The Richard Mille Mercedes of Valentin Pierburg and Tom Onslow-Cole could collect important points with P4 in the ProAM class. In addition, Tom Onslow-Cole managed the fastest lap of the race.
All in all a top performance, which was demonstrated by the entire SPS automotive performance team. On 8th and 9th June the International GT Open will continue in Spa-Francorchamps.