RED BULL RING, Austria: Oman’s Al Faisal al Zubair and Andy Soucek of Spain resume their challenge for International GT Open Championship honours at Austria’s Red Bull Ring this weekend. Teams taking part in the GT Open series have enjoyed a summer break since the Lechner Racing Team’s Porsche 911 GT3 R crew secured a podium finish and an outright win at the two Imola races in July.
That latter success has catapulted the crew back into title contention and the duo head to Austria with Soucek trailing the series leading Michele Beretta and Vincenzo Sospiri Racing Lamborghini-driving team-mate Frederik Schandorff by just five points. Because he was forced to miss one race meeting through illness, Al Zubair holds third in the points’ standings.
The Omani said: “I am looking forward to getting back into the car after such a long break. It has been over a month. I really love the Red Bull Ring. I was there in the Porsche Super Cup but have never been there in the GT3 car. It will take some getting used to but we have practice sessions available and we should be able to get up to speed quite quickly.
“I believe it is going to be a tough weekend. There are a few guest starters but we will have the same focus and the same targets as any weekend and that is to maximise the points. Hopefully more wins to come, but I am just excited to get back into the car.”
The first of the one-hour practice sessions is scheduled for 10.38hrs on September 10 (Friday) and the second stint gets underway at 15.12hrs.
The weekend’s GT Open action is being held in conjunction with the Italian F4 Championship, Clio Cup Europe, Euroformula Open and the Formula European Regional Championship by Alpine.
GT Open entrants will take centre stage for their first 30-minute qualifying session from 10.55hrs on Saturday. The 70-minute opening GT Open race gets underway with a rolling start from 16.30hrs.
Second qualifying takes place at the earlier time of 09.00hrs on Sunday morning (September 12) and the one-hour second race takes centre stage on the Red Bull Ring Circuit from 13.50hrs.
I believe it is going to be a tough weekend. There are a few guest starters but we will have the same focus and the same targets as any weekend and that is to maximise the points. Hopefully more wins to come, but I am just excited to get back into the car
Al Faisal al ZubairOman race driver
2021 International GT Open — overall standings after round 4 (8 races):1. Frederick Schandorff (SUI)/Michele Beretta (ITA) 91 pts
2. Andy Soucek (ESP) 86 pts
3. Al Faisal al Zubair (OMN) 68 pts
4. Baptiste Moulin (BEL/Yuki Nemoto (JPN) 63 pts
5. Ollie Millroy (GBR)/Brendan Iribe (USA) 54 pts
6. Loris Spinelli (ITA) 53 pts