Last weekend marked the final race of the Touring Car Endurance Series, a series part of the 24H Series by Creventic created solely for touring cars and GT cars up to GT4. After winning the first ever TCES race in Silverstone 2016 in Cup 1 class (for BMW M235i Racing Cup cars only), we were very much looking forward to the final race of the season on one of our hometracks in the Belgian Ardennes.
For this occasion, we had 3 BMW M235i Racing Cups lined up with an all-international drivers. To begin with, the brothers Recep and Hakan Sari who are competing in the BMW M235i Racing Cup with us all season decided to compete in the international race with their Gamsiz Motorsport powered by JJ Motorsport M235i. Furthermore, we entered two of our own cars as well. The first one #152 for 3 American drivers: LLoyd Read, John Landrum and Paul Dubinsky. On our #192 we welcomed 3 drivers from Qatar: Mansoor Hamad Al Haijri, Abdulla Ali Al Khelaffi and Mahmoud Mohd Al Khalef.
Our week started with the Gran Turismo Events trackdays on wednessday and thursday where our new drivers had the chance to get acquainted with the car and track, followed by the free practice and qualifying on friday. Our cars qualified 3rd, 4th and 5th in class during a completely rained out session. The weather for the weekend didn't really change much, as the first part of the race on saturday (3H) got underway under rainy conditions as well. After the first 3 hours, our #192 M235i Cup with Al Haijri, Al Khelaffi and Al Khalef was leading the race with a 1 lap lead on the Sorg Rennsport car in 2nd. Sari/Sari followed on third place, in front of our all-American #162 BMW M235i.
After the night break, the race got underway again on sunday morning for the remaining 9 hours. The drivers did not really got the chance to drive under dry conditions, as it started raining again as soon as the track dried up a bit. The standings remained unchanged, and after 12 hours the #192 JJ Motorsport M235i of Mansoor Hamad Al Haijri, Abdulla Ali Al Khelaffi and Mahmoud Mohd Al Khalef crossed the finish line as winner in the Cup 1 class. The brothers Hakan and Recep Sari did a solid race as well, and finished on the final podium step. Our #162 car with Read/Dubinsky/Landrum finished the race in 4th, only one lap shy of the podium.
With 2 cars on the podium, and all our 3 cars in the top 4 in the strong Cup 1 field, we look back extremely happy to the 12 Hours of Spa. As we enjoy racing in the Touring Car Endurance Series (TCES), we are planning to enter our cars again in the series for 2018 in the European championship. Do you want to race with us in 2018? Do not wait any longer and contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org!