Team manager Klaus Graf was overjoyed: "Top result! Finally, we finally shook off the bad luck and scored our first win of the season with our starting number 17." A hard-earned top result, which Timo Bernhard and Kévin Estre brought out on Saturday Starting from pole position On Sunday, the starting position was similarly good: Klaus Bachler put the 911 with the number 18 on the place in the sun, but it was the Porsche 911 GT3 not grantedto end the chaotic race: Bachler was able to keep a safe lead, but due to several Safetycar phases with pitstop opening windows, the classification was whirled up completely. After drifting into the gravel his team-mate Adrien De Leener had to give up later.
So let's first summarize what happened on Saturday: The Saturday race for the ADAC GT Masters on the Sachsenring was a great one for the KÜS Team75 Bernhard from Bruchmühlbach-Miesau in the Palatinate. Already in qualifying, twice the long-distance world champion Timo Bernhard (37) in the Porsche 911 GT3 R with start number 17 had pulled out the pole position. Timo was able to defend this first place at the start as well as after two safety car races in the turbulent race on the rollercoaster of the Sachsenring and even made a small lead. At the perfect mandatory pit stop, Timo's Porsche works driver colleague Kévin Estre (29) from France took over the 911 and in his stint extended the lead to more than five seconds at times. The start-finish victory of the No. 17 was never endangered.
The result is, however, preliminary. The technical examination after qualifying had been criticized that the Gurney flap on the rear wing was attached with tape. At first the Porsche was taken out of the standings, but the KÜS Team75 appealed to Bernhard and was therefore allowed to start from pole position. In the sister car with the start number 18 of the Belgian Adrien De Leener (29) went because of the rear wing problem - in this case, the KÜS Team75 had not appealed - from the 33rd and last place in the race. Adrien was able to work his way to 25th position until the pit stop. Ex-Porsche-Junior Klaus Bachler (27) from Austria took over and brought the Bernhard-Porsche to 17th place. Let's listen to the words of Timo Bernhard for the first victory.
Statement from the Saturday race
"The first win of the season feels great, I'm really proud of the squad, of course Kévin and I. We had a really great day and we've been working so hard over the last few weeks with a significant increase in performance over the last few races We did a lot of good driving but we were unlucky at crucial moments and today everything went together on the track, qualifying this morning was brilliant with the pole position, we had a good race, it was really strong and now we have to stop Waiting for the decision of the sports court We have always driven with these tapes, which was never criticized, it has no effect on the performance, Porsches all over the world drive in this configuration and I hope for a positive decision, "said Bernhard.
A victory was also on Sunday there
There was a crying and a laughing eye for the KÜS Team75 Bernhard in the Sunday race. After the pole position and a long lead, the Porsche 911 GT3 R with the start number 18 of Klaus Bachler and Adrien De Leener was promoted by a competitor. The second Neunerfer with long-distance World Champion Timo Bernhard and his colleague Kévin Estre took home five valuable points. In qualifying Bachler had won the pole position in a sovereign manner. In the race, he was able to defend the lead despite a red flag and two safetycarphasen and pass the Porsche with a good lead to Adrien De Leener. But due to several safetycarphases, the field was completely confused. So Adrien suddenly found himself in fourth place.
Immediately after the restart, De Leener was transported through the gravel bed and had to give up. The sister car with start number 17 entered the race with Kévin Estre from seventh place. Despite 30 kilograms of successful ballast Kévin was still able to gain a place because of the victory in the Saturday race. After Timo had taken over the car, he was first in fourth, but was washed back by the Safetycar turbulence in seventh place. With a strong race, he then brought the Porsche in fifth place to the finish. All in all, in our view, a really successful weekend of a hard-working troupe, to whose results we congratulate. We love the team KÜS Team75 Bernhard, are looking forward to the model cars and now want to hear, which conclusion Timo Bernhard has from the Sunday race.
Timo Bernhard over the Sunday at the Sachsenring
Bernhard: "Fifth place is okay with our 30 kilograms ballast weight, but we can not handle the weight anymore." From the seventh place Kévin got off to a great start in this turbulent race and made up some places. "The strategy was good, I was in fourth place. As the Safetycar came out during the pit stop window, some cars were flushed in. I was eighth, and could then advance to fifth place, which was the maximum, so it was a good weekend, so it can go on, we keep attacking and wanting Overall, the hard work of the team has paid off, with pole positions in both races, a win and a fifth place finish. " In two weeks, on the weekend of 21 to 23 September 2018, the season finale takes place in Hockenheim.