A late-race penalty at the Hankook 24H SEBRING “shouldn’t diminish the joy” of securing the 2021 GT3-AM Teams’ and GT3-AM Drivers’ championships, according to Herberth Motorsport’s Alfred Renauer.
Herberth Motorsport team principal Alfred Renauer believes a penalty that ultimately cost the Bavarian team outright victory at the recent Hankook 24H SEBRING “shouldn’t diminish the joy” of an otherwise successful 2021 season in the 24H SERIES powered by Hankook.
Having come into CREVENTIC’s first official endurance event at the Sebring International Raceway vying for the GT3-AM championship, Herberth’s lead #91 Porsche 911 GT3 R was in the thick of the fight for victory during the opening, rain-affected stages before making its first pit stop under Code 60. In its typically systematic fashion, the Bavarian team had worked its way into the lead by the sixth hour, and continued to swap the lead with the Rutronik Racing Audi R8 LMS throughout the night.
In the morning however, and following a brief red flag period to address copious amounts of standing water at the Raceway after a heavy rainstorm, Herberth Motorsport was served a 120-second penalty for ‘not respecting the pit exit signal’, Alfred Renauer having inadvertently run a red light at pit exit whilst rejoining the track for the restart. The penalty ended up dropping the #91 Porsche behind Rutronik Racing, the latter of whom went on to secure its first outright 24H SERIES victory at Sebring.
Despite the penalty, the #91 Herberth Porsche recovered to finish 2nd overall, just 1m 44s behind the victorious Audi R8.
Herberth’s Sebring podium, on top of four outright wins this season at Mugello, Circuit Paul Ricard, Barcelona and the Hungaroring, was enough to secure the Bavarian outfit the GT3-AM Teams’ title and the GT3-AM Drivers’ championship for Alfred Renauer. Ironically, Rutronik’s win and podiums at Mugello, Barcelona and Hungary, plus Herberth’s no-score at Hockenheim, meant both teams finished the season with 109 points. Herberth was crowned GT3-AM champion on countback.
“It was a long and difficult year, in the end we can celebrate four season wins and two titles. There could hardly have been a better ending,” explains Alfred in an official team communique. “At this point, a huge thank you to our team, who did a fantastic job from Friday evening to Sunday evening with almost no sleep.”
Alfred’s twin brother Robert, who shares team principal duties at Herberth, also commented: “Even if there might have been more this weekend, I think we can be proud of ourselves.”
The reigning GT3-AM Teams’ champion has already registered two standalone entries for the 2022 season opening Hankook 24H DUBAI on 13-14-15 January, with team stalwarts Alfred and Robert Renauer, Daniel Allemann and Ralf Bohn confirmed to drive the #91 Porsche 911 GT3 R once again. The quartet are also former outright winners at the Dubai Autodrome, having taken the 24-hour win in 2017 alongside two-time 24 Hours of Le Mans winner and two-time World Endurance Champion Brandon Hartley.
Herberth Motorsport has also registered a collaborative entry in the GT3 category with DUWO Racing. Andrey Mukovoz, Stanislav Sidoruk, Sergey Peregudov and Porsche Supercup / Carrera Cup race winner Dylan Pereira are set to team up in the #93 entry.