Vanthoor leads opening practice at the Nurburgring

14 September 2018 Vanthoor leads opening practice at the Nurburgring

Dries Vanthoor put the #2 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT entry on top in opening practice at the Nurburgring.

The Belgian ace, who is an outside contender for the Sprint Cup title this weekend, began the event in perfect fashion with a lap of 1m54.581s around the 5.1km circuit.

Vanthoor and crewmate Will Stevens enter the deciding contest 22.5 points shy of top spot, with 35 still on offer at the Nurburgring.

Second fastest was the #19 Grasser-Lamborghini of Andrea Caldarelli and Ezequiel Perez Companc, which ended the session 0.416s adrift of Vanthoor’s benchmark time.

The #1 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT machine took third spot. The crew of Christopher Mies and Alex Riberas enters the event at the top of the overall standings, level on points with the #88 AKKA ASP Team Mercedes-AMG, which could only manage 15th on the timing screens.

Of the other contenders to be crowned Sprint Cup champions, the #66 Attempto-Audi was fourth fastest; the #63 Grasser-Lamborghini was 14th; and the #17 WRT-Audi was 16th.

In the Pro-Am class, two crews are battling to be crowned champions. The #26 Sainteloc-Audi secured the early advantage thanks to Markus Winkelhock, who lapped in 1m55.964s. The #39 TP 12 Kessel-Ferrari was almost a second shy of that time in the hands of Carlo van Dam. The quickest Pro-Am runner was the #333 Rinaldi-Ferrari, which is making a one-off Sprint Cup appearance this weekend.

The Black Falcon squad was the top Silver Cup entry, with the #6 Mercedes-AMG taking fifth overall in the hands of Luca Stolz. The class has already been decided, however, with the #90 AKKA-Mercedes of Jack Manchester and Nico Bastian sealing the title at the Hungaroring.

Second practice gets underway at 14.35 CEST.