On the "roller coaster" of Brno not only the Porsche 911 GT3 (Type 992) celebrated its debut in the Porsche Sprint Challenge (PSCCE), but also numerous drivers received their baptism of fire.
- Rookie Colin Bönighausen dominates GT3, Sitnianski and Dziwok victorious in GT4
- Endurance success in the 100-mile race for Ollie Jumper and Florian Janits
- Next event already in a fortnight (May 27th/28th) at the Red Bull Ring
With the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, the Clubsport Championship organised by Lechner Racing has added another highlight to the 2022 season. For the first time as part of the Histo Cup Austria, the much-anticipated PSCCE kick-off event took place in perfect weather at Brno. The programme included the well-established two ten-lap sprint races and the 100 Miles of Czech Republic.
Already in qualifying for the first sprint race, 17-year-old Colin Bönighausen (GER, Bäderprofis.de) did not miss a beat and took pole position for his PSCCE debut race. At the start Bönighausen acted confidently and maintained his lead, while Ollie Jumper (GER, OJ) made a rocket start from 4th on the grid and immediately moved up to second place. Bönighausen’s chase for the win was only interrupted once by a safety car period, but he kept his cool at the restart and secured his first victory in a race car. Second was Jumper as the best ProAM driver, followed by GT3 novice Vinzent Höllwarth (AUT, Porsche Centre Inntal) just ahead of David Assfalg (GER, HP Racing International). Bönighausen was also the fastest driver in the second race and thus a deserved double winner. Höllwarth again crossed the finish line in second place, this time ahead of the winning ProAM driver Ulrich Ziegler (GER, HP Racing International), who could make use of a skirmish between Jumper and Stefan Fuhrmann (AUT, MS Racing), in his favour.The best start into the season in the AM class was made by Leo Willert (AUT, Heizer Monkeys Racing) on his GT3 debut and Franz Lahmer (AUT, Koglbauer Motorsport) with one race win each.
At the rolling start to race 1 on Saturday, Franz Dziwok (POL, FA 1 Racing) immediately took the lead from pole setter Milan Sitnianski (CZE, Sport Garage), coming from the second row. For laps Sitnianski tried to pass Dziwok and Maciej Walenda (ITA, LAVA Racing) again, but he was not able to do so until the last lap, when he managed to get by with a brilliant manoeuvre on the outside of the first chicane. Local hero Sitnianski thus celebrated his first GT4 overall victory in the PSCCE. Franz Dziwok, last year's ProAM champion, struck back in the second race on Sunday. Again he overtook pole setter Sitnianski right at the start, but this time he stayed in front until the chequered flag. The class of the "AMbitious drivers" was won by Peter Brunner (SUI, Team fmt) in the first sprint, in the second by Christian Höllwarth (AUT, Porsche Centre Inntal).
100 Miles of Czech Republic
For just over an hour, interrupted only briefly for the driver change and the start of the second half of the race, the PSCCE drivers battled it out in the endurance race on Sunday afternoon. Colin Bönighausen handed over the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup in the lead to his father Klaus, who was able to defend the top position for a few more laps. Then first Jumper, who had taken over from start driver Florian Janits (AUT), overtook Bönighausen, followed later by solo starter Höllwarth (winner ProAM) and the duo Ziegler/Assfalg, who were joining Jumper/Janits on the overall podium.The dominating fight of the weekend in the GT4 Clubsport between Dziwok and Sitnianski also continued in the Endurance race with a few rather tight moments. In the end, Dziwok (with Lennart Marioneck) was able to celebrate another victory.
Colin Bönighausen (Sprint double winner GT3 Cup Overall & Pro Brno 2022):
"I just switched from karting, this was only my third car race. Right from the start it was great and was extreme fun. In the sprint races I tried to manage the tyres after a few laps, because once they overheat in Brno, you can't get them back in the window."
Milan Sitnianski (Sprint winner GT4 Clubsport Overall & ProAM Brno 2022):
"Unfortunately I got caught behind a GT3 at the start of the first race, so I lost two positions. But at the restart after the safety car I was the laughing third. Franz Dziwok concentrated too much on Maciej Walenda and I was able to pass on the outside in the first S-curve. It was a cool manoeuvre, one that doesn't happen every day!"
Walter Lechner (Head & Promoter PSCCE):
"A season start is always extra stress. That's why I would like to thank all the technicians who are responsible for all the preparations, from setting up the cars to the logistics. Thanks to them we didn't have any technical problems. We know the 992 as a top car from the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup. With traction control and ABS, it now also offers new possibilities for club sport."
Robert Lechner (Sporting Director PSCCE):
"Brno is simply a great racetrack, especially when the weather is right, as it was this weekend. Then celebrating after the race is even more fun. I would like to specially mention those drivers who were there for the first time or who have moved up from GT4 to GT3. For us, such achievements are the proof that our Porsche Sprint Challenge Central Europe concept works."
PORSCHE SPRINT CHALLENGE CENTRAL EUROPE
Further race calendar 2022:
27/28 May Red Bull Ring Spielberg (AUT)
10/11 June Slovakia Ring (SVK)
26/27 August Hungaroring Budapest (HUN)
9/10 September Autodrom Most (CZE)