With just under two weeks to go before CREVENTIC’s second official event at the Hockenheimring, close to 40 cars have already been registered for the Hankook 12H HOCKENHEIMRING on 22-23 May.
After taking overall GT wins at Mugello and Paul Ricard, Herberth Motorsport has confirmed an entry for its home event, though unusually, not the duo of Porsche 991 GT3 Rs we’ve come to expect from the inaugural 24H SERIES Continents champion. The Bavarian team has instead entered a Ferrari 488 (#92, Jürgen Häring / ‘Bobby Gonzales’ / Tim Müller / Alfred Renauer) in the GT3 class. This will mark the first time that Herberth has competed with a Ferrari in the 24H SERIES since the team’s collaboration with HB Racing for the 2019 Hankook 12H SPA.
Fresh from its return to the 24H SERIES at the Hankook 12H MUGELLO, MiddleCap racing with Scuderia Praha (#11, Matúš Výboh / Josef Král), has also entered a Ferrari 488 GT3 for Hockenheim. The Czech team qualified on outright pole position at Le Castellet and went on to secure 2nd overall behind Herberth Motorsport.
Leipert Motorsport (#10, Brendon Leitch / Tyler Cooke / Fidel Leib), a regular in the GTX ranks as well as a former ‘Continental’ class champion, has entered a Lamborghini Huracán GT3 Evo for Hockenheim. The German team started the season strongly with GTX-class victory in Dubai and 2nd overall at the non-championship Hankook 6H ABU DHABI, but suffered heavy damage to its Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo in a high-speed accident at Mugello. The damage caused Leipert to miss round three at Circuit Paul Ricard.
Having secured its maiden 24H SERIES podium at Circuit Paul Ricard, Rutronik Racing by TECE(#18, Michael Doppelmayr / Pierre Kaffer / Elia Erhart / Swen Herberger) will line up for its home race with an Audi R8 LMS GT3. Compatriot Car Collection Motorsport, a former outright winner of the Hankook 24H DUBAI that also won the non-championship Hankook 6H ABU DHABI in January, will similarly represent Ingolstadt with two Audi R8 LMS. Series stalwarts Johannes Dr. Kirchhof, Gustav and Max Edelhof, Elmar Grimm take their traditional spots aboard the #34 entry, while Pierre-Yves Paque and Martin Lechmann have thus far been confirmed for the sister #88 R8. In what could be a first for Car Collection Motorsport, the German team has also registered an Audi R8 LMS GT4 Evo (#408) for the GT4 class.
Switzerland’s Haegeli by T2 Racing (#66, Pieder Decurtins / Manuel Lauck / Marc Basseng) and Italy’s DINAMIC MOTORSPORT (#7, Roberto Pampanini / Mauro Calamia / Adrian Amstutz) meanwhile make their first respective starts with their Porsche 911 GT3 Rs since the Hankook 12H MUGELLO in March. T2 Racing earnt a solid 5th on its 24H SERIES debut in Mugello, while DINAMIC completed a storming drive to 3rd at the same 12-hour event.
The similarly-named CP Racing (#85) and MP Racing (#58) complete the GT3 ranks, and have also entered the only Mercedes-AMG GT3s for Hockenheim thus far. Former Overall GT Drivers’ champions Charles Espenlaub, Charles Putman and Joe Foster, who will once again drive alongside compatriot Shane Lewis, will hope to improve upon the pair of 7th place finished the American team has managed so far this year. The Gostner family meanwhile (father Thomas, son David, and daughter Corinna and Manuela), who will drive once again with Giorgio Sernagiotto, will hope for a strong result in Germany after a troubled outing at Paul Ricard.
Vortex V8 will once again compete with two of its eponymous lightweight French sports cars at Hockenheim. The French team has enjoyed a strong start to the season, despite the occasional reliability woe, with the #701 entry finishing 3rd in-class twice and 2nd in GTX in Dubai. The results consequently place Vortex V8 second in the Overall GT Teams’ standings, just four points adrift of the top spot.
To capitalize on its recent strong outings, Reiter Engineering will compete with two KTM X-BOWs for the first time in the 24H SERIES since the 2019 Hankook 24H DUBAI. The German team secured two commanding wins in the GTX class in Mugello and Paul Ricard with Horst Felbermayr Jr., Eike Angermayr, Nicolai Elghanayan and Mads Siljehaug(#724). The quartet will be joined at Hockenheim by Nico Pronk, Peter Kox and Dennis Retera in the sister KTM X-BOW GTX (#725).
In a further nod to the KTM’s performance, Teichmann Racing, returning to the 24H SERIES for the first time since the Hankook 12H SPA in 2019, will also compete with the Austrian-built sports car (#711).
9und11 Racing completes the GTX field and will make its 24H SERIES debut on home turf with its Porsche 911 GT3 Cup MR (#719, Tim Scheerbrarth / Georg Goder / Ralf Oehme / Martin Schlüter).
Despite a troubled event for both teams at Circuit Paul Ricard, GT4 entries PROsport Racing and ST Racing still remain well in contention for the Overall GT Teams’ championship. The Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4 (#401, Nico Verdonck / Rodrigue Gillion / Kurt Hensen) took a delayed class win in Paul Ricard, despite turbocharger issues, and coupled with its 2nd in-class in Dubai, now lies fourth in the standings. Canada’s ST Racing meanwhile suffered its first retirement in the 24H SERIES at Le Castellet, but is still only 10 points adrift thanks to GT4-class wins in both Dubai and Mugello with its BMW M4 GT4 (#438, Samantha Tan / Chandler Hull / Jon Miller).
Following runners-up spots in-class in both Dubai and Paul Ricard, DUWO Racing now leads the Overall GT Teams’ standings on 53 points, and will resume its championship charge at Hockenheim with its Porsche 911-II Cup (#909, Andrey Mukovoz / Stanislav Sidoruk / Sergey Peregudov). Fittingly, the Luxembourg team finished 2nd overall at last year’s Hankook 16H HOCKENHEIMRING. Speaking of which…
NKPP Racing by Bas Koeten Racing’s first European outing of the season with its 991-II Cup (#991, Harry Hilders / Gijs Bessem / Bas Barenbrug) couldn’t come at a better venue! Last year at Hockenheim, the Dutch team took the first – and thus far only – overall win for a 991 Cup car at a 24H SERIES event. The team also got its season off to a good start in 2021 with 991-class victory at the Hankook 24H DUBAI.
Alongside its collaborative effort with NKPP Racing, Bas Koeten Racing has also registered a solo 911-II for Marcel and Glenn van Berlo, and Bart van Helden (#925). Willi Motorsport by EBIMOTORS meanwhile (#955, Fabrizio Broggi / Sergiu Nicolae / Sabino de Castro) returns to 24H SERIES action after taking the class win on home turf in Mugello.
Former Hankook 24H DUBAI winner Stadler Motorsport (#920, Paul Kasper / Ramon Werner / Philipe Menotti / Enzo Calderari) will also be back on the grid at the Hockenheimring. The Swiss team, founded by the late Matthias Stadler, made its series return earlier this year in Mugello, but retired early after an incident on-track.
Having debuted the new 992-generation Porsche 911 GT3 Cup at a 24H SERIES event last month at Paul Ricard, SpeedLover reins back to a single-car, 911-II Cup line-up (#978, Olivier Dons) for the Hankook 12H HOCKENHEIMRING. In contrast, rival MRS GT-Racing (#989, Saif Alameri), back for its first start since taking a class podium in Dubai, has registered a 992-gen Cup car for the event.
In an unorthodox move, Red Camel-Jordans.nl (#999, Ivo, Rik and Luc Breukers) rounds out the 991 class with its own 992-generation Porsche 991 GT3 Cup. This marks the first time the TCR SPA 500 winner has entered a GT division-spec car since competing at the 2016 Hankook 24H CIRCUIT PAUL RICARD with a MARC Mazda 3 V8. This year’s Hankook 12H HOCKENHEIMRING will also be the first time the Dutch team has not registered a TCR entry since the division was introduced for 2016.
Reigning Overall TCE Teams’ champion Autorama Motorsport by Wolf-Power Racing has entered its now-customary two-car line-up for Hockenheim. Fresh from its first TCR win of the season at Paul Ricard, and with a 3rd in-class also under its belt from Dubai, the #1 Volkswagen (Constantin Kletzer / Jasmin Preisig) now leads the 2021 TCE standings, while runner-up spots at the same events mean the sister #112 Golf GTI (Rhys Lloyd / Christoph Hurni / Christoph Lenz) is now fourth in the standings, only 12 points behind.
Incredibly, just one point covers the top three in the TCE standings. Behind Autorama Motorsport, its closest TCR rival – AC Motorsport (#188, Stéphane Perrin / Mathieu Detry) – claimed 3rd place finishes at Mugello and Paul Ricard, and had looked set to take the overall TCE win at Le Castellet only to suffer wheel hub issues in the closing two hours.
CWS Engineering meanwhile, also one point behind Autorama Motorsport, currently leads the TCX class championship standings courtesy of three successive runners-up spots in Dubai, Mugello and Paul Ricard. The British team has entered its now tenured Ginetta G55 (#278) for team owner Colin White and teammate Jean-Francois Brunot.
TOPCAR Sport (#131, Ronny Jost / Fabian Danz) and Bonk Motorsport (#169, Volker Piepmeyer / Jens Moetefindt / Michael Bonk) will make their first respective starts since the season-opening Hankook 24H DUBAI at Hockenheim. TOPCAR took overall TCE victory this year in Dubai with its CUPRA TCR, and also secured a class podium at last year’s Hankook 16H HOCKENHEMRING. Bonk Motorsport meanwhile will also continue its collaboration with former series champion Hofor Racing, the pair having entered a TC-spec BMW M2 CS Racing (#269, Felix and Rainer Partl / Michael Mayer) alongside the German team’s solo-run Audi RS 3 LMS.
Munckhof Racing (#210, Eric van den Munckhof / Marco Poland) enters a BMW M4 GTR in the TCX class for it first series start since the 2019 Hankook 24H BARCELONA, while Lithuania’s GSR Motorsport (#105, Ernesta Globytė / Rokas Kvedaras / Rolandas Salys / Rimvydas Savickas) rounds out the TCR contingent with its Volkswagen Golf GTI.
- Words – James Gent
- Images – Petr Frýba, BoostMedia and Lazenby Visuals