Over the course of the 2021/2022 season, the GT Winter Series has always presented full starting fields at all locations. The final round in Barcelona this coming weekend will top this once again, as around 40 cars will meet in Catalonia for the battle for the championship. Among them are some well-known drivers and teams. In addition, the event will be covered by a livestream from nürburgring.tv.
Championship open – decision in Barcelona
The reigning champions Robert Haub and Gabriela Jilkova (DRAGO Racing Team ZvO with AMG GT4) can still hope to continue wearing their number 1 car in the coming season. This year they stalked their way to the front of the field not so much through victories but mainly through good team performance and high consistency and are now lurking within striking distance behind the two BMW M2 CS Racing cars from BMW España and Schnitzelalm Racing, 25 points behind in P4 overall. Who will ultimately decide the race for the top spot in the standings will be decided at the F1 circuit in Catalunya.
BMW M2 CS Racing lead the standings
The concept of the GT Winter Series, through its concept of points allocation, provides that it is not necessarily the strongest car that wins the championship. In fact, two BMW M2 CS Racing lead the table. The BMW Spain team with José de los Milagros and Nerea Martí is in the lead with 182 points, only 4 points behind Schnitzelalm Racing with Marcel Marchewicz and Michael Sander, who is getting better and better. It seems quite realistic that the championship title will be awarded between the two fighting cocks. Since racing is unpredictable and the proverbial sausage is at stake for both of them, many things can still happen in the tough duel.
More Cup Porsches than in some one-make cups
Barcelona almost seems to exert a magical attraction on Cup Porsches, because no less than 10 991 and 992 Cup cars are competing in the two Sprints and one Endurance of the GT Winter Series season finale. The fast Swede Oscar Löfquist, who already showed in Estoril and Jerez that he and his Porsche 992 Cup can be reckoned with at any time in the front field, will be there again. At the same time, Kurt Ecke Motorsport is bringing along Andreas Sczepansky, a driver who has a lot of experience from the German Carrera Cup. The country duel could become exciting, whereby Sczepansky pilots a 991.2, which does not have to be however depending upon distance to the large disadvantage. With HP Racing (Assfalg/Ziegler), Laptime Performance (Martin Engelmeier) and Classic&Speed (Karlowski), there are also other internationally experienced Porsche teams on the grid. Beat Ganz from fmt in Switzerland has not yet named any names, but has entered two 991 Cup cars.
The field of the Cup-R class is made more colorful by the Ferrari 458 Challenge of the Die Biermacher Racing team. It is driven by the GTWS-known Ralf Schuchmann.
GT4 class booming
It is now well known that GT4 cars are an optimal crossover for newcomers, but also experienced and professional drivers. Thus in Barcelona drivers of all colors can be found in this class. CV Performance is sending its fast AMG GT4 into the race, while ZvO Racing is countering with two racers of the same model, with Josef Liska and Martin Toth in the cockpit alongside the aforementioned champion pairing.
Teichmann Racing and Razoon Racing will be bringing the particularly nimble X-BOW GT4 to the start, and Senkyr Motorsport from the Czech Republic will be bringing two newcomers to the field who have been extensively prepared for the task of motorsport with its “Be a racedriver” program. Rounding out the GT4 field is Kenneth Ahnelöv of Team Wileco from Sweden.
The Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport class is also booming. “These cars are very welcome here, there is even a separate class for them,” says GTWS project manager Robin Selbach. Although many of these racers are team and privately owned, there are hardly any fields of activity. The GT Winter Series closes this gap.
Leading the championship standings is RFF Motorsport with Harry Verkerk and Patrick van den Berg. With a gap of 47 points, they too are still hoping for the GTWS crown or at least one of the front places. Incidentally, they are tied on points with David Assfalg, who leads the Cup-R class. Karsten Krämer Racing, an up-and-coming team from the German Endurance Championship, is competing with three “Caymen”. Julian Netzband, one of the drivers, is also well in the running with 135 points, level on points with Harry Verkerk. Hot duels are pre-programmed here. RN Vision STS sends Etienne and Ralf Ploenes on the 718 GT4 CS into the race.
Peter Terting and Carrie Schreiner on AMG GT3
Doubly new is the AMG GT3 of Schnitzelalm Racing. First, new because just received from Team 10Q Racing, which sold its assets to Schnitzelalm on short notice. Secondly new is the sonorous driver line-up. Next to ex-DTM driver Peter Terting, Carrie Schreiner takes the wheel as one of the fastest women. The fact that the two are also a couple outside of racing is well known by now and could strengthen the driver connection even more. However, the other GT3 cars in the field won’t let the butter be taken off their bread that easily. The Bullit Racing Aston Martin GT3 with Stephen Pattrick and Valentin Hasse-Cloot wants to take the lead, as does the beautiful Biermacher Ferrari 488 GT3 with GTWS driver Uwe Lauer. New at the start is Jürgen Gerlach, who will have his Classic&Speed Porsche 991 GT3-R under his butt.
At the top it will be colorful, thanks to the prototypes
But the GT3 drivers could be in for a real challenge – from the competition in the prototype class, which is surprisingly strong in Barcelona. For the first time, the so-called “Nevada Cup”, which consists of prototypes mainly from Radical, is sending several cars into the race, including the one or other well-known fast SR8 with V8 engine and 450 hp. But also Monza Garage brings a Radical SR8 to the start, which attracts attention by low weight and plenty of engine power and therefore could have a good chance in the team-internal duel against the Ligier LMP3. In any case, the duel winner remains in the family, because both Radical and LMP are driven by the Teixera brothers.
Don’t miss the livestream
On Sunday, March 13, the GT Winter Series finale will be livestreamed. The Lifestream can be accessed at the link below. The producer nürburgring.tv will not only show all three races in full length, but also the grids and interesting articles about the current events of the GTWS. It’s worth tuning in, it starts at 11:30 am.