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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Spa WEC race prolonged after crimson flag for Cadillac and BMW conflict

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Bamber was pressuring Neel Jani’s Proton Porsche 963 LMDh for third place with a bit of below two hours remaining within the race when the pair stumbled on the battle for fourth within the LMGT3 class on the run to Les Combes.

With Jani delayed barely behind Gelael’s WRT-run BMW M4 GT3 and the D’Station Aston Martin Vantage of Erwan Bastard, Bamber had a run on the Swiss rounding the Kemmel Straight’s right-hand kink.

However as he moved to the precise in a bid to attract alongside Jani, he clipped the entrance of Gelael’s automobile and speared his personal Chip Ganassi Racing V-Collection.R LMDh arduous into the obstacles on the right-hand aspect of the highway.

Bamber’s automobile grew to become airborne earlier than touchdown on its wheels, whereas Gelael made heavy contact with the obstacles on the left-hand aspect. Each drivers are understood to be okay. 

With minutes left on the clock earlier than the unique six hour length was set to elapse, it was introduced that the race can be prolonged by the identical 1h47m length of the crimson flag.

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The race is about to renew at 19:10 native time.


“It might have been loads worse, I believe I am fairly fortunate right here,” Gelael advised the WEC’s dwell feed. “I used to be simply within the center, the 2 guys had been combating in entrance and so they misjudged and typically the misjudgement can result in greater issues. I believe everybody else sees.

“We had been going to salvage one thing this weekend, anyhow we did not, however hopefully for Le Mans, it is the large one which I hope it would not occur in Le Mans. Fingers crossed, full focus there.

“But it surely’s additionally an accident you should not take flippantly. I perceive this stuff occur and it is a part of racing, nevertheless it’s additionally one thing I believe very avoidable.

“The respect given between classes and the respect between drivers; some individuals do it very effectively, and a few individuals do it a bit much less. At the moment was the worst half.”

WRT’s LMGT3 workforce supervisor Kurt Mollekens added: “It’s extremely unlucky, one weekend is just not the opposite. We had been the heroes of the earlier one, now we return with zero factors each automobiles, huge crashes, quite a lot of work to do earlier than Le Mans.

“We’d have most popular to keep away from it like all people else would, however it’s what it’s.”

#31 Staff WRT BMW M4 LMGT3: Darren Leung, Sean Gelael, Augusto Farfus, #20 BMW M Staff WRT BMW M Hybrid V8: Sheldon Van Der Linde, Robin Frijns, Rene Rast

Photograph by: Emanuele Clivati | AG Photograph

Ferrari was main the race on the time of the stoppage with its pair of factory-run 499P Le Mans Hypercars.

Alessandro Pier Guidi within the #51 entry was main Antonio Fuoco within the #50 automobile that was disqualified from qualifying for working underweight and had been demoted to the again of the grid.

Each had overtaken the privateer Proton Porsche that had led in Jani’s fingers at half-distance, regardless of a weird downside along with his door-hatch.

Shortly after taking up the lead from Julien Andlauer below a digital security automobile, the Swiss spent a number of sluggish laps attempting to shut his reluctant door and was proven a black and orange flag earlier than managing to drag it shut.

The clock continues to tick down as obstacles are repaired on the Kemmel Straight. 

The Bamber-Gelael crash was the second main incident of the race, with the VSC triggered by BMW driver Rene Rast tagging the again of Phil Hanson’s Jota Porsche on the run to Bruxelles and spinning it into the trail of Ahmad Al Harthy within the different WRT BMW GT3. 
#51 Ferrari AF Corse Ferrari 499P: Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado, Antonio Giovinazzi

#51 Ferrari AF Corse Ferrari 499P: Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado, Antonio Giovinazzi

Photograph by: Emanuele Clivati | AG Photograph

Each Hanson and Al Harthy retired, whereas Rast’s automobile was ordered to serve a drive-through penalty.

Repairs to the armco obstacles meant the race remained below warning for nearly an hour earlier than resuming.


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