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One Audi crashes, one wins FIA GT World Cup qualification race at Macau GP


FIA GT World Cup - 2016 Macau Grand Prix - Qualification race

FIA, Motorsport, Mobility, Road Safety, F1, WRC, WEC, WTCC, World RX

Laurens Vanthoor (Audi R8 LMS) has won the 12 lap Qualification Race race for tomorrow’s FIA GT World Cup at Macau after team mate and pole sitter Edoardo Mortara spun on the first corner.

Vanthoor managed the race from the front to lead home the Manthey Porsche works team of Earl Bamber and Kevin Estre in a race dogged by crashes and lengthy safety car periods.

The works Mercedes-Benz AMGs of defending FIA World Cup winner Maro Engel and Renger van der Zande were fourth and fifth , five seconds behind the podium getters.

Just seven laps were run at racing speeds as first Mortara, then non factory entrants Nico Muller (Audi R8), Philip Ma (Porsche 991) and John Shen (Porsche 997) crashed out.

Mortara who rejoined the race after two pit stops, one for rear bodywork and aerodynamic wing repairs and another for tyres, finished thirteenth after another incident in which he made strong contact with Hong Kong hero Darryl O’Young (Porsche 991) on the final lap.

Both incidents involving Mortara are under investigation by race officials.

Mortara and Vanthoor”s Audis had locked out the front row of the grid and needed to reach Lisboa corner first if they were to hold out the stronger works entries of Porsche and Mercedes.

Mortara’s Audi spun violently on the high speed Mandarin corner just off the start and was fortunate not to be hit by any of the field. His car suffered rear panel and wing damage but he was able to limp to the pits.

The first of the non manufacturer entrants Nico Muller ( Audi) crashed twice in quick succession , the second time extremely heavily, triggering the first of the safety car periods.

Mortara , advantaged by the safety car, staged a stirring drive back through the field from one lap down making contact with O’Young on the final lap to claim a seventh row starting position for tomorrow’s FIA GT World Cup.

Finishing places in today’s race determine grid positions for tomorrow’s 18 lap FIA GT World Cup.