Halfway in Dubai 24 Hours: Black Falcon Mercedes leads
The 24 hour endurance event has hit the halfway point.
Halfway through the tenth running of the Hankook 24H DUBAI, the only remaining Black Falcon Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 (#2, Al Faisal/Haupt/Buurman/Webb) is in the lead with a total of 298 laps.
The quartet of drivers with the gullwing sports car has a margin of two laps from the KPM Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT3 (#28, White/Mücke/Adams). Another Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3, the SPS automotive performance entry (#33, Pierburg/Arnold/Assenheimer/Müller) is third overall at the halfway point, three laps down on the outright leaders.
As was to be expected with 89 cars on track, the first half of the race had no shortage of incidents. Among the cars to retire were the Abu Dhabi Racing Black Falcon Mercedes-Benz (#2, Al Qubaisi/Bleekemolen/Schneider/Simonsen) after a collision and the Hofor Racing gullwing (#9, Kroll/Heyer/Frankenhout/Eggimann/Rehfeld) following an impact into the Armco barriers.
The winning team from last year, Stadler Motorsport, also saw its Porsche (#1, Ineichen/Ineichen/Amstutz/Engelhart) sidelined early due to a broken right rear wheel suspension. The pole-winning FACH AUTO TECH Porsche (#12, Klohs/Ragginger/Richter/Müller) lost time as the car got stuck on the track with suspension damage, but is still in the race. In total, there were eight ‘code 60’ neutralisations due to various incidents during the first twelve hours of the race.
Dragon Racing running strong
The Dragon Racing Ferrari (#88, Jawa/Grogor/Griffin/Barff) was leading the A6-Am class in fourth placer overall, followed by the RAM Racing Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 (#30, Arya/Jäger/Onslow-Cole/Christodoulou) and the Nissan GT Academy Team RJN Nissan GTR GT3 (#23, Strauss/Sanchez/Bin Khanen/Hammann/Paletou). The fastest of the two Black Falcon Porsche 991 Cup cars (#26, Fjordbach/Sawa/Al Faisal/Weishaupt) was leading the Porsche Cup class in a very creditable eighth place overall.
SP2 and SP3
The leading SP3 and SP2 cars, the Optimum Motorsport Ginetta G55 GT4 (Hankey/Yoluc/Ellis/Barwick) and the MARC Cars Australia MARC Focus V8 (#92, Kaye/Al Hamad/McLeod/Karanfilovski/Fiore) are running right behind each other in 25th and 26th place overall. The Racingdivas by Las Moras BMW (#76, Braams/Van der Sloot/Uljee/Partl) is on top in the CUP1 class in 30th place overall.
The best-placed touring car at the halfway point is the UAE-based Memac Ogilvy Duel Racing’s SEAT Leon Supercopa (#95, Moutran/Moutran/Moutran/Quaife) in 32nd place overall. Belgian team, VDS Racing Adventures, has its Honda Civic Type-R (#117, Van der Straten/Paisse/Divoy/Close) leading class A2 in 34th place overall while the Hofor-Kueperracing BMW E46 M Coupé (#75, Küpper/Kroll/Kroll/Toniutti/Prewitt) is on top in class A5 in 38th place overall.
Mercedes muscle to the front early in 24 Hours of Dubai
Black Falcon takes third overall win in 24H Dubai with Mercedes-Benz