Best 911 GT3 R on the fifth grid row

 
After the 24-hour classics at Dubai and Daytona, the Bathurst 12 Hour is the third major endurance race of the season. The event is gaining in popularity from year to year and attracts more and more manufacturers from Europe. Lining up to contest the top A class aside from Porsche are Audi, Bentley, BMW, Lamborghini, McLaren and Mercedes-AMG. One of the peculiarities of the race is its unusual starting time: Traditionally, the field is sent on its 12-hour pursuit in the dark at 5.45 in the morning. Outside Australia, the event can be viewed live on the Internet on www.bathurst12hour.com.au.

Qualifying quotes

Dr Frank-Steffen Walliser, Vice President Motorsport and GT Cars: “The two qualifying sessions didn’t run so well. Matt Campbell initially set P5, which demonstrated our speed. The fact that he made a slight error in the Top 10 Shootout doesn’t detract from his strong performance. It’s extremely tight amongst the frontrunners with 15 cars within a second. This shows just how close the competition is. Matt did such a great job and outlined the potential of the 911 GT3 R. Unfortunately, Earl Bamber only turned a few laps in the second qualifying. He made a tiny driving mistake which had immediate consequences on this track. As a result he wasn’t able to achieve a better time. It was even more difficult for Fred Makowiecki and so he’s even further down the field. Our teams will now focus fully on preparing for the race. They have a great deal of experience and I’m sure that they’ll manage to fight their way up the field over the 12 hours.”

Bathurst 12H 2018 - Porsche 911 GT3 R, Manthey-Racing (911): Romain Dumas, Frederic Makowiecki, Dirk Werner
Porsche 911 GT3 R, Manthey-Racing (911): Romain Dumas, Frederic Makowiecki, Dirk Werner

Matt Campbell (911 GT3 R #12): “That was a very good qualifying for Competition Motorsports. To be the only Porsche squad to make it into the top 10 Shootout is a great achievement. Our 911 GT3 R is well balanced. We improved from one practice to the next on this difficult racetrack. Unfortunately I made a mistake early on in my shootout lap which cost me a lot of time and a better grid position. But this doesn’t affect our confidence for the race.”
Earl Bamber (911 GT3 R #991): “Unfortunately I went too wide, touched the wall and afterwards I had no chance to improve on my lap time. Our 911 GT3 R feels good and I think that we’ll be able to do more in the race tomorrow. I just feel a bit sorry for the boys in our team for the extra work I’ve caused them. I hope I can repay them for their hard work tomorrow.”
Frédéric Makowiecki (911 GT3 R #911): “Bathurst was new territory for me and my teammates. We’ve never raced on this very special track before. Luckily we managed to make good progress from the first practice to this qualifying. Our 911 GT3 R is running well, even though we lack a little performance. Still, we’re all looking forward to this unique race.”
Jeroen Bleekemolen (911 GT3 R #540): “We’re not unhappy. In the USA we always have to leave the pits on cold tyres. Here, we’re allowed to pre-heat them so we were a little off with the tyre pressure. It wasn’t perfect. Otherwise, our car ran very well on this racetrack. We all have a good feeling and we’re looking forward to the race.”

Bathurst 12H 2018 -Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Grove Motorsport (4): Stephen Grove, Brenton Grove, Ben Barker
Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Grove Motorsport (4): Stephen Grove, Brenton Grove, Ben Barkering 

Top 10 Shootout qualifying result

1. Farfus/Mostert/Wittmann (BRA/AUS/D), BMW M6, 2:01.934 minutes
2. Van der Linde/Tander/Vervisch (ZA/AUS/B), Aud R8, + 0.235 seconds
3. Haase/Mies/Winkelhock (D/D/D), Audi R8, + 0.500
10. Long/Campbell/Calvert-Jones/Davison (USA/AUS/AUS/AUS), Porsche 911 GT3 R + 3.177

Qualifying result

18. Bamber/Estre/Vanthoor (NZ/F/B), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 1.606 seconds
25. Pappas/Lieb/Bleekemolen/Stolz (USA/D/NL/D), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 2.338
26. Dumas/Werner/Makowiecki (F/D/F), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 2.643