The sixth race of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup took the teams to the Ardennes, to Spa-Francorchamps. The tradition-steeped Belgian race is viewed by every driver as a highlight of the Supercup racing calendar and always offers spectators and fans spectacular motorsport. Project 1’s starting point was obviously to defend and to further build upon their lead in the drivers’ championship. After promising performances, Sean Johnston hoped to win further championship points with a finish in the top 15.
For a long time, the race, which consists of 11 laps of the 7.004km long circuit, offered very little real tension. Even though the drivers put a great deal of pressure on each other, there were no exciting overtaking manoeuvres amongst the leaders. Everything pointed to a pole-to-flag victory for Kuba Giermaziak but, on the last lap, everything changed. With an eye on the championship, Sean Edwards had cleverly kept out of all rough battles for position and for a long time was in third position behind Giermaziak and Bachler. A few bends before the finish, Giermaziak was forced to give in to a technical defect and give up his position. Bachler and Edwards therefore moved up a position.
For Sean Edwards, everything ran to plan. “It was a shame and annoying for Kuba, for it was a perfect result for us. At the end, all my competitors drove for me. Thanks to the team, who put a fantastic car at my disposal over the whole weekend. For us, it’s now a question of finishing the final three races and taking the points.” After his second place in Spa, Edwards’ lead is now 26 points over Nicki Thiim and 30 points over Michael Ammermüller. With 60 points still to be distributed in Monza and Abu Dhabi, where two races will take place, Team ’Allyouneed by Project 1’ is right on course for the championship.
For rookie Sean Johnston, despite a strong and error-free performance, with plenty of battles for position, it was a thankless result, for at the end he just missed out on championship points. However, Sean J. put in his best performance of the season in Spa and took a top result. The field was very close together and Sean J. confidently kept Porsche professionals with a great deal more experience behind him. He himself views the race in Spa as further experience in a long learning curve: “The race was good for me. When you think that this was my first race here in Spa. It was an amazing feeling to drive through the ‘Eau Rouge’ with my opponents. We’re happy and thanks to my team for a great job. With the improvement in my performance I’m looking forward to Monza.”
Team boss Paul Schlotmann is also completely happy with the performance of his team. “I’m really happy with the entire performance over the weekend. Both drivers delivered a clever and error-free race. Both rookie Sean Johnston, who took on drivers such as Bleekemolen and Engelhardt, and Sean Edwards, who didn’t take any risks. With P2, we can build on our lead in the championship, and in the last three races we are right on track. Thanks to my whole team, who again worked superbly and without errors. With such a performance we’re looking forward to Italy.”
The third to last race in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup will take place in just under two weeks’ time on 8.9.2013 in Monza.
News and background information about the race and about Project 1 can be found on the Project 1 website and on Facebook, and on our partner website, racecam.de.
Current positions – drivers’ championship:
1 Sean Edwards 88
2 Michael Ammermüller 80
3 Nicki Thiim 76
23 Sean Johnston 2
Racing calendar – Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup:
Abu Dhabi 03.11.2013
After the short summer break, it was again time for racing in the Porsche Carrera Cup. The tenth and eleventh races of the season took the teams to the Nürburgring. After the explosive overtaking marathon by championship favourite Sean Edwards at the Norisring, everything pointed to victory for Project 1, and to being able to attack in the championship.
Since 2012 and 2013, there have been two races per weekend in the Porsche Carrera Cup. On the one hand, to give people the chance to iron out mistakes, on the other hand to further reduce risks. For Project 1, the weekend was a rollercoaster of emotion as far as the title hopes were concerned. In the most beautiful summer weather, title favourite Edwards was able to turn his second place starting position on Saturday into a confident victory, thereby reducing the gap in the championship to 5 points. For Project 1, it was the long sought after and much overdue first victory in the Porsche Carrera Cup. The team from Lohne in Lower Saxony was finally able to demonstrate a top performance at national level.
Sunday was however rather sobering. Starting from fourth position, a highly controversial drive through penalty threw Sean Edwards to the back of the field. After a tough battle for position, in the fight to limit damage and to win points, he eventually had to throw in the towel. He is taking the decision against himself with composure: “The result on Saturday was great and almost perfect. I controlled everything and was really delighted to again be fully part of the championship battle. The decisions today have ruined that hard-won chance again. I’m hugely disappointed.” Despite his disappointment, Sean Edwards is battle-hardened. “Setbacks make me stronger, I can just look to the future now. We’ve still got 6 races to go.”
Both rookies in ‘Team Deutsche Post by Project 1’ were able to put in a top performance and confirm the upward trend over the weekend. Only just missing out on the second qualifying segment, the American Sean Johnston started on Saturday from P15 and on Sunday from P16. In both races he let his potential shine. With exceptional tactics and fantastic overtaking manoeuvres he finished his first race in P10, thereby finishing in the hoped-for top 10 and winning important points. In the second race he took 11th place, only just missing out on a finish in the top 10. He is happy with his performance in both races: “Both races were great fun and the battle for position with the other drivers was great. In particular the overtaking manoeuvres on Saturday in the penultimate lap. On Sunday, my tyres lost grip at the end and I couldn’t attack as I wanted to. But finally the performances are going in the right direction and we’re moving forwards. I’m really happy with the race results.”
Second Project 1 rookie, Jeffrey Schmidt, found himself even further forwards in the rankings. After qualifying, he booked starting positions 8 and 12. In the race, attack was the order of the day. For sixth place on Saturday, he was awarded 10 championship points. On Sunday, he saw the chequered flag in 8th place, again finishing in the top 10. In consideration of the guest driver regulations, Jeffrey Schmidt takes seven points. “We were really fast all weekend. In qualifying, we can exploit our potential even further. With the top-10 results, we were able to collect important points for the rookie-championship and for the remaining races I’ll do everything to try and win it.” Both drivers are taking part in the rookie-championship alongside the A-championship. Jeffrey Schmidt’s 19 points have improved his position in respect of the rookie title and has narrowed the gap to leader Connor de Phillippi to ten points. Sean Johnston has risen to 6th place.
Team boss Paul Schlotmann sums up the weekend with mixed feelings. “I’m absolutely delighted with Project 1’s first victory in the Carrera Cup. The team has really earned it. Both rookies have also shown what’s possible. We’re disappointed about Sean Edwards‘ result on Sunday. But we won’t give up. And especially not now.“
There are six more races in the Porsche Carrera Cup this season. In the two coming races on 14th and 15th September in Oschersleben, ‘Team Deutsche Post by Project 1’ will be able to improve its position in respect of the championship.
News and background information about the race and about Project 1 can be found on the website and on Facebook.
Current positions – drivers’ championship:
1 Kévin Estre 161
2 Nicki Thiim 148
4 Sean Edwards 138
10 Jeffrey Schmidt 67
17 Sean Johnston 27
Racing calendar – Porsche Carrera Cup Germany:
Hockenheim II 20.10.2013