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ROWE BMW wins 2024 Endurance cup opening round

ROWE BMW wins 2024 Endurance cup opening round

Farfus, Harper and Hesse put on a stellar show to outclass the field and take the win in the opening round at Paul Ricard

The No. 998 BMW M4 GT3 finished 13.519 seconds clear of the #63 Iron Lynx Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2 of Mirko Bortolotti, Andrea Caldarelli and Matteo Cairoli to win the three-hour race at the French circuit.

Bortolotti lead the opening phase of the race for the Iron Lynx outfit pretty convincingly only losing the lead to the #22 CLRT Schumacher Porsche during the pitstops.

However, Dorian Boccolacci was soon ordered to return to the pits as the car had rejoined the track with the earthing cable still attached, which had to be removed. Dan Harper resumed the race in second place to instantly put pressure on Caldarelli leading to a fantastic pass at Beausset to see Dan Harper take the lead and stretch it out for the BMW.

Hesse was then able to build the lead over the Iron Lynx Huracan to deliver BMW’s first Endurance Cup win since ROWE were victorious in last year’s CrowdStrike 24 Hours of Spa.

Bortolotti, Caldarelli and Cairoli, meanwhile, ensured Iron Lynx returned to the podium for the first time since last year’s season opener at Monza while the No. 2 Mercedes-AMG Team GetSpeed Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo of Jules Gounon, Fabian Schiller and Luca Stolz completed the overall top three.

The No. 98 ROWE BMW of Philipp Eng, Marco Wittmann and Nick Yelloly saw a podium bid derailed with late-race refueling issues and finished outside the overall top ten.

Last year’s Endurance Cup vice-champions were running in third and closing on the No. 63 Lamborghini when problems with the fuel rig resulted in a slow stop that dropped Eng to eighth.

However, a charging recovery drive saw the Austrian fight his way past Raffaele Marciello, Christopher Haase and Sven Mueller to climb to fourth.

Before he could then set his sights on Stolz in the No. 2 Mercedes-AMG, Eng was then to splash for fuel with 18 minutes remaining, which dropped him outside of the top ten.

Marciello, sharing the No. 46 Team BMW M4 GT3 with Valentino Rossi and Maxime Martin, completed a late-race pass on Mueller’s No. 96 Rutronik Racing Porsche to finish fourth, with Mueller, Julien Andlauer and Patric Niederhauser rounding out the top five.

Winward Racing’s No. 57 Mercedes-AMG, driven by Daan Arrow, Colin Caresani and Tanart Sathienthirakul led a top three lockout in Silver Cup for the Stuttgart manufacturer, while the No. 25 Sainteloc Racing Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo II won Gold Cup and Kessel Racing’s No. 8 Ferrari 296 GT3 triumphed in Bronze Cup.





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