Race Review 44. Adenauer ADAC Simfy Trophy (VLN 4)

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ARED Motorsport Aston Martin GT4

On Saturday June 22nd 2013 we started at the 44. Adenauer ADAC Simfy Trophy within the VLN Endurance championship. Traditionally the race after the 24 hours race at the Nürburgring is a quite one, with less participants than usual, as many teams are still rebuilding their cars and the 24 hours race of Le Mans is taking place at the same time.  Not so this time: With 189 cars registered it was a well filled starter field. In our class GT4/SP10 there were 8 cars participating. For the race service we used our backup crew Mathol Racing. Our regular drivers Andy Sammers and Ronny Tobler took on the 4 hour long challenge.
 Aston Martin GT4 ARED Motorsport

The weather gods meant well when we started for the qualifying on Saturday morning. The sun was shining which meant ideal conditions for our two drivers. Andy set a new fastest lap on our Aston with a 9:21 and qualified #177 on position 69 for the race.
Andy drove the start for the first time and could improve our position lap by lap. “The time that we put into the setup and testing of the car was well invested”, said Andy Sammers after his stint. “The car now gives me the trust necessary to drive closer to the limit.” After a good first stint Andy handed the car over to Ronny. Ronny’s stint was accompanied by constantly changing conditions. At the beginning there was just a bit of drizzling rain on different parts of the track. There was enough grip for the slick tires but caution was advised. This was also the beginning of many yellow and double yellow situations because of accidents that took place. “Based on what I observed I’d say that a few accidents happened because of circulation problems because of the high temperature in the cars. In the double yellow phases where you have to lower your speed to 60 km/h I could observe drivers being treated by doctors with their legs up in the air,” so Ronny after his stint. In Ronny’s second to last lap the rain intensified and the track was wet from the GP track up to kilometre mark 14 on the track. At this point the slick tires were a risk and it was difficult to keep the car on track. Ronny gave the signal for Andy to prepare one lap earlier than planned for the driver change.

Aston Martin GT4 ARED Motorsport VLN Lauf 4 2013

But the driver change was not meant to happen because of very tragic circumstances. When Ronny arrived on the long straight Döttinger Höhe the marshals waived the red flags – race has been aborted. After a short time in the pit the race management ordered the cars into parc fermé, the race was finished and should not be restarted. A short while after, the sad reason was announced: Wolf Sylvester, 55 years old, VLN regular driver and two times champion 2006 and 2010 died as a result of a heart attack on the track. A few hours later news came from Le Mans: Allan Simonsen, 34 year old Aston Martin Racing driver died as a result of a severe crash in the hospital. We feel deep sorrow for both deceased and commemorate their families for their loss.
Andy and Ronny drove their best race yet on their ARED Aston Martin and reached overall position 33 and third place in class.

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© 2013 ARED Motorsport Photos: Marc Weichert Fotografie