DTM at the NÜRBURGRING AND A RETURN TO MAGNY-COURS WITH THE GTWCE IN THE WRT'S MENU

DTM at the NÜRBURGRING AND A RETURN TO MAGNY-COURS WITH THE GTWCE IN THE WRT'S MENU

10/09/2020

Double commitment weekends succeed one another relentlessly for Team WRT: this time it is Germany and France on the programme, with another DTM round and another GTWCE two-race event, this time of the Sprint Cup.

For the DTM, it will be the fifth round of the season and the first of the two rounds scheduled at the Nürburgring. An excellent opportunity for the Audi RS 5 DTM of WRT Team Audi Sport and its drivers (Ferdinand Habsburg, Harrison Newey and Fabio Scherer) to improve further.

The second round of the Sprint Cup will bring the GTWCE contenders to Magny-Cours, which the series visited only once, nine years ago. The Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi R8 LMS head to France determined to keep the lead in the GTWCE overall standings.


Team Principal Vincent Vosse has set objectives for the team ahead of the weekend: “In the DTM, we showed progress at Assen but it wasn’t an easy weekend. We scored points and performed the fastest pit stop in Race 2, but we need to further raise our game. We have the potential, not yet the consistency. We aim at scoring points with the three cars and obtain better results. In the GTWCE, it will be nice to go back to Magny-Cours, a circuit we haven’t been since 2012, when we raced in the French GT series. With the Blancpain, we were there in 2011 and we have good memories, especially of the party after the race, as we conquered there Team WRT’s first title. Difficult to say if the Audi R8 LMS will be ok there, we have no recent data, but it’s interesting to go to a different track, which will be unknown for most of the non-French contenders. The aim is to continue doing a good work, as we are doing since the start of the season, and avoid the kind of small mistakes we did at the Nürburgring last weekend. We need flawless races to score heavy points and stay on top.”


DTM

Last round at Assen yielded quite some positives for WRT Team Audi Sport, including points finishes, three top-10 qualifying results and the fastest pit stop in Race, which prove progress. The Belgian squad is aiming at more improvement at the Nürburgring, where the fifth round of the season takes place. It will be on the GP track of 5.148 kms, while one week later it will be the ‘Sprint’ layout (3.629) that will be used. To that end, the team hopes to capitalize on the data gathered during the long pre-season test sessions held in the Eifel track.

Ferdinand Habsburg, Harrison Newey and Fabio Scherer are as determined as ever to do well, with the Swiss completely fit after his accident in the Netherlands, which required re-building entirely his car.


Ferdinand Habsburg: “Nürburgring will be exciting. I currently hold the unofficial lap record from the pre-season test and the team is really getting into a grove in the championship. I hope that the team and I will be able to enjoy this weekend as much as we did with the test! The ‘Ring is a great historic track and a special place to me, as it is there that I drove the Audi RS 5 DTM for the first time.”

Harrison Newey: “I have always enjoyed the Nürburgring, it’s one of the greats, and I can’t wait to be there! We have had the luxury of the ITR test there, so it is the first time I am returning to exactly the same track with a DTM car. We had a good Q2 last time out and we are looking to carry that form forward. I’ll miss the fans, but we will race hard for everyone watching at home.”

Fabio Scherer: “The most important is that, after the accident lat Assen, the car will be ready for this weekend. A big thanks to all the team, who made that possible. I feel the team is behind me and pushing for success. The pace is there, we just need to bring everything together. We need to avoid to put pressure on ourselves and I need to continue to drive, learn and work hard, and things will be coming by themselves. That’s the target for the Nürburgring.”


GTWCE

Magny-Cours, in Central France, is a novelty in the GTWCE calendar of this year. The track in the Nièvre has hosted a round (a 3-hour race) of the series only once, in 2011, the inaugural season of the then Blancpain Endurance Series. Needless to say, for most of today’s drivers and teams (with the exception of French ones, which will have some advantage), the once home of the French GP will be completely new. This will maybe be an important factor this weekend and reshuffle a bit the cards on the table.


After one win at the season-opening event at Misano, the Belgian Audi Club Team WRT and the pair of Skechers-livered car #32, composed of Charles Weerts and Audi Sport driver Dries Vanthoor, will aim at consolidate their respective Teams’ and Drivers’ lead in both the Sprint Cup and the GTWCE overall standings. Car #31 of Ryuichiro Tomita and Audi Sport driver Kelvin van der Linde is another candidate to top honours, and so is, in the Silver Cup, car #33 entrusted to Hamza and Jusuf Owega.


Dries Vanthoor: “It’s a new race in the calendar, but we are well prepared, and I think it will be a very interesting experience for everybody. I have been testing there with a LMP2 car some years ago [prior to Team WRT’s one-off in LMP2 at the ELMS round in Spa], so I know a little bit the track, although it will be different with a GT3, of course. We are leading the standings, so the objective is to do a good job and no mistakes and stay on top of the rankings.”

Charles Weerts: “I have been doing a quick test at Magny-Cours with a GT-like car. It looks like a nice track, I think it will be fun to race there. It might also fit well the Audi R8 LMS, so hopefully we can carry on the good momentum of Misano.”

Kelvin van der Linde: “I very much look forward to Magny-Cours. I have never raced there but always watched the Formula 1 GPs there and it looks like I will enjoy it, as it suits well my

driving style. After another successful weekend at the Nürburgring, the team is leading in the GTWCE standings and I am in the top-3 among Drivers, so the objective is to get more points for the team and all of us.”

Hamza Owega: “We had a quick test with another car to learn the track, but we couldn’t have a proper session before the event, so Magny-Cours will be quite a discovery for us. Our goal is to take important points for the Silver Cup and continue to learn and grow with the car.”


DTM – Round 5
Nürburgring GP, Germany, 11-13 September 2020

Timetable (All times = CET)

Friday 11 September 2020
13:00-13:45 Free Practice 1
16:30-17:00 Free Practice 2

Saturday 12 September 2020
10:35-10:55 Qualifying Race 1
13:33-14:28 + 1 lap Race 1

Sunday 13 September 2020
10:45-11:05 Qualifying Race 2
13:33-14:28 + 1 lap Race 2

WRT Team Audi Sport entries (Audi RS 5 DTM)
#10 Harrison Newey (GB)
#13 Fabio Scherer (CH)
#62 Ferdinand Habsburg (AT)

GTWCE Sprint Cup – Round 2
Magny-Cours, France, 10-13 September 2020

Timetable (all in local time = CET)

Thursday 10 September 2020

20:15-22:15 Official paid test

Friday 11 September 2020

14:35-15:55 Free Practice
21:15-22:35 Pre-Qualifying

Saturday 12 September 2020
14:40-15:00 Qualifying 1

22:15-23:15 Race 1 (1 hr)

Sunday 13 September 2020
08:30-08:50 Qualifying 2
13:45-14:45 Race 2 (1 hr)

Belgian Audi Club Team WRT entries
#31 Kelvin van der Linde (ZA) - Ryuichiro Tomita (JP) Pro
#32 Dries Vanthoor (BE) – Charles Weerts (BE) Pro
#33 Hamza Owega (DE) – Jusuf Owega (DE) Silver

PHOTO: SRO Motorsports Group, Alexandre Epping de Barros


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