A great achievement for the Porsche customer team Precote Herberth Motorsport: In a turbulent final race at the Hockenheimring, the Porsche Young Professional Mathieu Jaminet and Robert Renauer celebrated the championship title in the ADAC GT Masters. The German-French duo took up the race on Sunday from tenth place and battled their way up the field to finish fifth to be crowned the new champions at the international race series with a one-point advantage. The drivers’ championship title for Jaminet and Renauer marks the second for Porsche in the “super sports car league” since 2008. Timo Bernhard and Kévin Estre took the flag in sixth place with the second-best Porsche 911 GT3 R. The newcomer team IronForce by Ring Police secured second place in the Trophy category for amateur drivers.
After an inspired drive, the Porsche-supported Jaminet (France) and his German teammate Renauer were crowned champions. When the start driver Jaminet achieved the tenth fastest qualifying time on the drying racetrack, a pursuit race was needed to defend their lead in the drivers’ standings. The 23-year-old Porsche Young Professional maintained his composure amongst the chaos of the start, in which four vehicles retired due to an accident, kept his eye on the big picture and immediately gained six positions. By the time he handed the race car from Weissach to Jaminet he was running in fourth place. After 15 laps, the current 24H series winner Renauer took the wheel of the 911 GT3 R. The racing driver from Upper Bavaria left the pit lane in fifth place and maintained this position to the flag after 31 laps. “I’m lost for words. This weekend was a rollercoaster of emotions. We came here leading the points, yesterday we took pole position and came second in the race. The timing in today’s qualifying didn’t go at all well. Watching the race from the pitwall after the driver change was a real nail-biter. Now I’m over the moon,” said Jaminet. “The 911 GT3 R fielded by Timo Bernhard and his crew was behind me when I left the pit lane. It covered me brilliantly, the Porsche spirit out there was tremendous,” explained Renauer.
In a repeat of the previous day, the number 17 race car fielded by KÜS Team75 Bernhard put in an impressive performance. Estre took up the challenge on the 4.574-kilometre from position 18 on the grid. By the time the Frenchman came in for the mandatory pit stop after 13 laps, he had gained twelve positions. His works driver teammate, Timo Bernhard from Germany, held on to this position to the chequered flag. “Once again our car was very fast. If we’d started further up the grid, we could have fought for a podium spot. I managed to make up several positions during my stint, and Timo was the guardian angel for Precote Herberth Motorsport after the driver change. I’m thrilled that a Porsche team managed to secure the title,” said Estre.
IronForce by Ring Police finished the final round on 22nd place. Lucas Luhr from Switzerland could not reap the full potential of the 911 GT3 R in qualifying due to the changing track conditions. Starting from P33 on the grid, the former long-standing Porsche works driver immediately launched a pursuit before handing the No. 69 car off to Jan-Erik Slooten after 16 laps. The German brought home second place in the trophy category, and second overall in the class for amateur drivers. “We experienced a difficult weekend and couldn’t achieve what we’d actually planned to do at the final round. The positive aspect, however, was that we had a lot of spectators at the racetrack. Congratulations to Mathieu and Robert on winning the championship,” declared Luhr. The famous YouTuber and TV host Jean-Pierre “JP” Kraemer supported the team at the racetrack.
Luck evaded the second 911 GT3 R campaigned by KÜS Team75 Bernhard on Sunday. Klaus Bachler (Austria) took up the last race of the season from position eight. However, in the very first lap, the former Porsche Junior had to park the race car after becoming entangled in an accident caused by another competitor. “The qualifying went really well, and eighth was a promising starting position for the race. You could see how fast the car was. My start was good, but I couldn’t avoid the other car in the accident,” explained Bachler.
Jaminet and Renauer earned the decisive points for the title witnessed by Dr Frank-Steffen Walliser, Vice President Motorsport and GT Cars. “That was a very emotional finale, which we won with a one-point advantage. Precote Herberth Motorsport did a fantastic job over the entire season. The crew has definitely earned this success, which was also evident by the reaction in the paddock. Congratulations to the champions!” declared Walliser.
“That was an extremely gripping finale. Congratulations to Precote Herberth Motorsport. They worked hard for the title and did a consistently good job. The KÜS Team75 Bernhard squad continued to improve over the last weekend of the season and made an important contribution to the overall success for Porsche. I’m sorry that Klaus Bachler and Adrien de Leener had to retire in the first lap today. They performed well throughout the year. IronForce by Ring Police coped well with the difficulties of their maiden season and managed to keep battling their way forward,” said Marc Lieb, Head of Customer Racing.
The finale on the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg concludes the twelfth season of the ADAC GT Masters. The last race weekend of the “super sports car league” has been contested on the tradition-steeped 4.574-kilometre racetrack in Germany since 2011. Seven race weekends in Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria and the Netherlands made up the 2018 race calendar.
Hockenheimring, result race 14 of 14
1. van der Linde/van der Linde (ZA/ZA), Audi R8 LMS
2. Ineichen/Engelhart (CH/D), Lamborghini Huracán GT3
3. Dontje/Buhk (NL/D), Mercedes-AMG GT3
5. Jaminet/Renauer (F/D), Porsche 911 GT3 R
6. Bernhard/Estre (D/F), Porsche 911 GT3 R
22. Luhr/Slooten (D/D), Porsche 911 GT3 R
Bachler/de Leener (A/B), Porsche 911 GT3 R