PSC 14th-placed finish for Oman's Al-Zubair in Spa
PORSCHE MOBIL 1 SUPER CUP
Round 7 – Spa, August 24-26, 2018
For immediate release
Sunday, August 26th, 2018
OMAN’S AL-ZUBAIR SECURES CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS WITH 14TH
PLACED-FINISH IN PORSCHE MOBIL 1 SUPER CUP RACE AT SPA
· Khalid Al-Wahaibi sidelined from Spa race on opening lap
· Thomas Preining heads Larry ten Voorde to claim start-to-finish win
SPA (BELGIUM): Oman’s Al-Faisal Al-Zubair delivered another solid performance at the seventh round of the Porsche Mobil 1 Super Cup at Belgium’s legendary Spa-Francorchamps circuit to finish 13th in the points and 14th in the overall standings.
Lechner Racing Team Middle East team-mate Khalid Al-Wahaibi suffered a second successive disappointment on his last round of this year’s Porsche Mobil 1 Super Cup. The rookie was sidelined on the opening lap after his car suffered rear damage when a spinning driver collided with his GT3.
Thomas Preining continued his winning ways with a second successive start-to-finish victory. Dutch rookie Larry ten Voorde was second and Kuwait’s Zaid Ashkanani rounded off the podium places after overtaking Julian Andlauer early in the race. Defending champion Michael Ammermüller finished in a lowly seventh and saw his series lead over sixth-placed Nick Yelloly reduced to just two points.
Al-Zubair said: “Qualifying was good and the race was okay. At the beginning I was too wide in a fast corner and I got hit. I had to go all the way round the outside but I climbed back to finish 13th in the points because there was one guest driver ahead of me. We need the points now. We need to make the pace into points. I am 13th now out of 32 drivers. It’s not bad but I expect a bit more.”
A disappointed Al-Wahaibi added: “I had a pretty good start. I chose to be cautious through the first few corners just to get the rhythm and avoid the accidents. Then, at camel straight going into the right-hander, another competitor had contact and was spinning. As I tried to avoid him, he crashed into me and hit my right rear. That damaged the bodywork, which was touching the tyre. I could not continue.
“It was extremely disappointing because I though there was a huge improvement from practice in qualifying and I wanted to see how that panned out in the race. These things happen in racing. I tried to make sure I avoided all the incidents in the first corners. I have moved forward and developed, but it was unfortunate that I could not continue and compete. I guess this is good preparation for the Middle East season next year.”
Preining led from pole and maintained his lead over Ten Voorde and Andlauer through the opening lap, as Al-Zubair completed the first tour in 17th position after running wide following a collision.
Al-Wahaibi’s cruel luck continued and the rookie Omani was sidelined along with Dylan Pereira, Victor Blugeon and Phillipp Sager after a turn three collision. Tom Sharp also pitted and retired on the first lap.
Zaid Ashkanani overtook Andlauer to snatch third behind the leading duo on the second lap and Al-Zubair climbed a place to 16th at the expense of Frenchman Nicolas Misslin. The top six and Al-Zubair held station through laps three and four, but Andlauer moved back ahead of Yelloly and into fourth place on lap five and series leader Ammermüller slipped to seventh.
Al-Zubair moved ahead of rookie Gustav Malja and into 15th on lap six and Mattia Drudi passed Yelloly to snatch fifth place on the next tour of the Belgian circuit.
There were no changes at the top of the leader board through nine laps and Al-Zubair maintained 15th heading into the last three laps of what was developing into a near-processional race.
Al-Zubair gained another place and moved into 14th on lap 10, as Preining held on to claim a second successive start-to-finish victory and leap into title contention. Ten Voorde and Ashkanani rounded off the top three.
Action resumes in the Porsche Mobil 1 Super Cup at Monza in Italy next weekend.
For further information:
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