Top 10 results at the 24h race of Spa-Francorchamps
The Frikadelli Racing Team made a successful debut at the 24h race at Spa-Francorchamps. Despite difficult changing conditions, Jörg Bergmeister, Frédéric Makowiecki and Dennis Olsen showed a strong performance in the Belgian Ardennes and drove the Porsche 911 GT3 R of the Barweiler team to eighth overall position.
"I am very satisfied with our first appearance at the 24h race at Spa-Francorchamps. Our entire team worked brilliantly together and did an excellent job throughout the weekend. In addition, the pit stops were really excellent and the pilots were also able to convince in the difficult mixed conditions on the track. I am also satisfied with the result, although it has to be admitted that the competition was a little stronger this time. All in all, we enjoyed participating in this extremely professionally organized event. It was our first international appearance after the 9h Kyalami in the pre-season and I could well imagine being more frequent in the future in such racing series as the Intercontinental GT Challenge," sums up team leader Klaus Abbelen.
At first, the start of the weekend did not go as planned. For example, the evaluation of a previously prescribed Covid-19 test had been delayed by two-time 24h Le Mans winner Timo Bernhard, which meant that he could not arrive in Spa-Francorchamps in time for qualifying for the racetrack. In short, Jörg Bergmeister was brought into the team for him. Although the Porsche brand ambassador should lack any test kilometers from the previous training sessions, he qualified together with Frédéric Makowiecki and Dennis Olsen confidently for the individual time trial of the top 20 vehicles, the so-called "Super-Pole". The showdown over two free laps started for the team of Frikadelli Racing Porsche factory driver Frédéric Makowiecki. In difficult changeable Ardennes weather, the Frenchman managed to reach the 13th starting position with the nine-eleven.
In the race, the wet-cold conditions should also play a major role. During the 24 hours, rains of varying intensity began again and again, which on the one hand make the choice of the right tyres a true lottery and on the other hand should trigger many accidents, full-course yellow or safety car phases. Nevertheless, the Frikadelli Racing Team was able to successfully stay out of the turbulence and settle into the top 15 of the overall classification at the beginning of the race. The long night was used to work their way forward bit by bit. After sunrise, Bergmeister, Makowiecki and Olsen found themselves in the top 10, and the trio of riders managed to fight their way back into the lap of the leader. After the race distance, they finally crossed the finish line in eighth place overall.
Driver's voices after the race:
Jörg Bergmeister: "For me personally, it was a very short-term and spontaneous effort, which nevertheless worked very well. Unfortunately, we have been a little unlucky in the meantime with the choice of tyres. As a result, we dropped out of the leadership round and were only able to work our way back into it late. Nevertheless, I think we can be satisfied with the bottom line. The eighth overall ranking is a very solid result under these conditions."
Dennis Olsen: "We would certainly have been able to get more this weekend, but unfortunately we only returned to the lead lap very late in the race. Too bad, because the pace of our Porsche 911 GT3 R was very good and the whole Frikadelli Racing Team did a brilliant job. So the potential for a top result was there, was only a little bit of luck missing in the changing conditions."