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2004 Race Reports

  Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, 7-9 May 2004

Qualifying - Friday
    
Click here for more photos from this race

  Ralf Kelleners and Jim Mullen took a win apiece on the opening weekend of the Group C-GTP Racing season. Having put his Kremer Porsche 962CK6 on pole by a massive 8 seconds in terrible conditions, Kelleners cruised to a relatively comfortable victory from David Mercer (Spice-Ford SE90C). Mullen (Spice-Chevrolet GTP) laid the groundwork for Sunday's success with third.

Saturday's poor weather caused a number of competitors not to take to the track. Indeed, the Bryan family decided to pack up for the weekend. High in the mind was the high speed qualifying accident, from which Paul Whight (Aston Martin AMR-1) and Henry Pearman (Jaguar XJR-11) were lucky to escape.

On what is believed to be the Chevrolet Intrepid's European racing debut, Bryan DeVries and the Jade Pig Racing team took a creditable fourth. Ian Stinton (Harrier GT1) followed, on his way to a double in the invitation category. Peter Schleifer (March-Chevrolet 84G) made his race debut with us claiming class honours and sixth overall. Jim Graham (Porsche 962C) secured a class victory despite fuel problems, but Sunday would see retirement due to a suspension bolt working loose.

Retirements which wouldn't been seen again were the Randalls' Nissan NPT-90 (low oil pressure), Nick Rini's Jaguar XJR-12 (head gasket failure) and Neil Clark's Harrier LR9C (right rear upright broken in accident at the Radaillon).

American, Mullen followed up his solid third with a thrilling win over compatriot Brian DeVries on Sunday. Mullen's drive earned him a one-off silver salver presented by the circuit. Kelleners incurred a Stop-And-Go penalty during the Pace Car period caused by Charlie Agg (Nissan R90CK) nudging the pit wall at the start. He chased hard but a broken gear linkage forced him into retirement from third. Former Spa winner, Martyn Konig (Porsche 956B) was promoted, rewarding the Brunn Racing team's hard work in solving gearbox and electrical problems.

The most travelled competitor of the weekend was undoubtedly Michael Schuster (Argo JM19C). He made a round trip to the German-Polish border of over 1500km to collect his spare Judd motor. His reward? Third in class. and fourth overall. Another most astounding effort was made by Henry Pearman. To the amazement of the Belgian stewards, he replaced his damaged Jaguar with the ex-RLR Italya Sports Porsche 962C and brought it home fifth.

Not having run on Saturday, John Pearson in Ecosse-Ford C285 "Henry" took sixth and class honours ahead of Schleifer. Stinton followed with Stefan Schrauwen (Chevron B8) take another second in class in ninth overall. Richard Bateman (Tiga-Rover GC287) was the final runner.

Nigel James (Porsche 962C) suffered a frustrating weekend with oil leaks, firstly from the engine, then the gearbox. Similarly frustrating was Stephen Hepworth's Argo-Chevrolet JM20. Electrical gremlins plagued the car throughout, though it was the first time it had turned a wheel since being returned to GTP spec.

 
No. Driver Car Time Laps
14 Kelleners R Porsche 962 CK6 2:40.674 7
112 Mullen J Spice Chevrolet GTP 2:48.640 10
27 Agg C Nissan R90CK 2:49.184 5
21 Mercer D Spice-Ford SE90C 2:49.323 5
64 De Vries B Intrepid RM-1 2:59.187 12
18 Whight P Aston Martin AMR-1 3:00.997 8
33 Konig M Porsche 956B 3:02.566 9
3 Pearman H Jaguar XJR-11 3:06.926 6
7 James N Porsche 962C 3:07.596 5
22 Stinton I Harrier GT1 3:09.809 7
8 Rini N Jaguar XJR-12 3:11.808 7
16 Schleifer P March Chevrolet 84G 3:11.912 7
51 Schuster M ARGO Judd JM 19C 3:13.601 6
88 Randall C/Randall N Nissan NPT-90 GTP 3:14.405 5
78 Pearson J Ecosse C285 3:18.300 7
17 Schrauwen S Chevron B8 3:20.646 12
28 Hepworth S ARGO Chevrolet JM20 3:22.533 5
10 Graham J Porsche 962C 3:22.654 7
23 Clark N Harrier LR9 3:31.096 6
37 Bateman R Tiga-Rover GC287 3:40.214 6
58 Bryan B ARGO JM19D 3:49.738 5
11 Bryan R Mustang GTP Probe 6:08.241 2
2 Law J Jaguar XJ220GT    
 

Race 1 - Saturday
 
No. Driver Car Time Laps
14 Kelleners R Porsche 962 CK6 41:22.326 13
21 Mercer D Spice Ford SE90C 41:33.615 13
112 Mullen J Spice Chevrolet GTP 41:48.766 13
64 De Vries Intrepid RM-1 42:37.909 13
22 Stinton I Harrier GT1 42:51.237 12
16 Schleifer P March Chevrolet 84G 43:08.187 12
17 Schrauwen S Chevron B8 43:43.762 12
37 Bateman R Tiga Rover GC287 44:41.810 11
10 Graham J Porsche 962C 14:16.423 4
Not Classified - less than 90%
88 Randall N NPT90 GTP 33:39.620 10
8 Rini N Jaguar XJR12 15:43.326 5
23 Clark N Harrier LR9 17:25.039 5
7 James N Porsche 962C 24:13.011 3
33 Konig M Porsche 956B 38:12.095 3
28 Hepworth S Argo Chevrolet JM20 09:54.394 1
Retirements
 

Race 2 - Sunday
 
No. Driver Car Time Laps
112 Mullen J Spice Chevrolet GTP 40:54.322 16
64 De Vries Intrepid RM-1 40:54.568 16
33 Konig M Porsche 956B 42:15.542 16
51 Schuster M ARGO Judd JM 19C 43:04.747 16
4 Pearman H Porsche 962C 41:26.572 15
78 Pearson J Ecosse C285 42:28.083 15
16 Schleifer P March Chevrolet 84G 42:32.667 15
22 Stinton I Harrier GT1 42:01.758 14
17 Schrauwen S Chevron B8 42:32.353 13
Not Classified - less than 90%
37 Bateman R Tiga Rover GC287 41:26.268 13
14 Kelleners R Porsche 962 CK6 22:09.969 8
10 Graham J Porsche 962C 33:41.784 7
7 James N Porsche 962C 12:52.396 4
28 Hepworth S Argo Chevrolet JM20 32:54.781 3
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