Norbert takes victory at International GT Open season opener
First place in Sunday’s race for the Lamborghini driver in Le Castellet
Le Castellet, 29th April 2019
Successful start of the season for Norbert: The Tyrolean claimed the victory in Sunday’s race at the first International GT Open weekend of the year in Le Castellet (F). From starting position seven Norbert and his team-mate Mikaël Grenier (CAN) finished ahead off all competitors in their Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO. In the race on Saturday the Emil Frey Racing duo did not see the chequered flag after a collision caused by an opponent.
Norbert set an important basis for the success already in the first lap: “The first corners were very chaotic. I found a good track position and moved up several places,” he reported. The experienced driver improved from his seventh starting position to the fourth place and was directly behind the leading trio. “For further overtaking manoeuvres the competition was too close. Therefore, we decided to make an early pit-stop and try to move up with the strategy,” he explained.
This plan turned out to be the right one for Norbert and his team: After all cars had performed their mandatory pit-stops, Mikaël Grenier, who took over driving duties during the stop, was in the leading position. The young Canadian showed a flawless performance and also withstood the pressure caused by the strong Mercedes from behind. After 60 minutes he crossed the finish-line in first position.
“To take a victory in the team’s first weekend with the new Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO is a great success for us all,” Norbert was happy. “The Emil Frey team has done a superb job and improved the car session by session. Mikaël did a perfect job as well.”
Fourth place in the overall classification despite bad luck on Saturday
In the race on Saturday Norbert and his team-mate suffered from bad luck. Already in the first lap an opponent made a mistake and collided with the Lamborghini driven by Grenier. “The suspension was damaged heavily and our race was over. I did not drive a single lap on Saturday,” Norbert was angry. The race control penalised the opponent afterwards. “That does not really help us,” the Austrian commented.
Because of the victory on Sunday, Norbert covers the fourth position in the overall classification despite the retirement from Saturday. “After one weekend the standings do not mean that much but it is a good basis for the rest of the season.” The next International GT Open races take place from May 25 to 26 in Hockenheim (D).