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Light and shadow at anniversary edition of the 24h Nürburgring

BLACK FALCON Porsche 992 GT3 Cup

The ADAC 24h Race Nürburgring was probably one of the most dramatic events for BLACK FALCON in recent years. At the anniversary edition of the endurance classic at the Nürburgring, the team from Meuspath achieved second place in the CUP2 class and an excellent 16th place overall with the Porsche 992 GT3 Cup #123 in front of 230,000 spectators.  In addition, the Porsche Cayman GT4 RS #85 crossed the finish line in sixth place in the SP10 class despite two repair stops. The two 992 Cup with the starting numbers #121 and #122 did not finish after accidents.

BLACK FALCON Team IDENTICA: Strong comeback ends in the morning hours
The impressive performance of BLACK FALCON Team IDENTICA remained unrewarded in the end at the 50th edition of the 24h race at the Nürburgring. Paul Harkema, Tobias Müller, Noah Nagelsdiek and Tim Scheerbarth used the qualifying session for final set-up work on their Porsche 992 GT3 Cup and qualified in the midfield of the class, which was strongly populated with 11 cars, driving the number 121 car. In the night qualifying the team - as well as numerous other cars - had overlooked an unfortunately placed yellow flag and was therefore given a two-minute time penalty in the race as well as the start from the pit lane. Unimpressed by the difficult starting position, Harkema, Müller, Nagelsdiek and Scheerbarth made up for the disadvantage in the first hours of the race with a very strong driving performance. For long stretches the IDENTICA Porsche was the fastest car in its class. After nightfall, the #121 took the lead in CUP2 for the first time. It settled there before the race ended abruptly in the guardrail after about 16 hours. An accident in the high-speed Tiergarten area damaged the car beyond repair. Thanks to the high safety standards of the Porsche 992 GT3 Cup, the driver remained unhurt.

Team BLACK FALCON: Second in the hard-fought CUP2 and 16th overall
In the CUP2 class BLACK FALCON sent two more Porsche 992 GT3 Cup into the race. The number 123 car driven by Ben Bünnagel, Mustafa Mehmet Kaya, Gabriele Piana and Mike Stursberg qualified third on the grid in class. The quartet completed a flawless race and was fast over the entire distance. The only incident, a puncture, cost the team just under five minutes and ended their hopes of winning the class. In the second third of the race, changeable weather conditions dominated the race. Despite the difficult conditions, the quartet remained faultless and was even able to make up a gap of several minutes during this phase. In the end, #123 crossed the finish line in a hard-fought second place in CUP2 with a gap of just under two minutes on the leaders. At the same time, the team achieved an excellent 16th place in the overall classification, which featured over 30 GT3 cars.
The sister car with start number 122 was also well in the running for a long time. Peter Ludwig, double starter Noah Nagelsdiek, Reinhold Renger and Maik Rosenberg worked their way steadily to the front in the first hours and were among the top five in class for a long time with their Porsche 992 GT3 Cup. An accident after dark forced the #122 quartet into the pits for a repair break. After about 45 minutes, the BLACK FALCON mechanics sent the 992 Cup back on track to catch up. In the second third of the race, the crew of the #122 worked its way up to third place in class before they had to end the race prematurely after around 17 hours due to an accident in the Pflanzgarten area.

BLACK FALCON Team TEXTAR: Crossing the finish line after two repairs during the night
The BLACK FALCON Team TEXTAR was pursued by bad luck at the 24h race. The experienced driver quartet of Martin Meenen, Marco Müller, Carsten Palluth and Tobias Wahl initially got off to a good start in the Porsche Cayman GT4 RS CS #85 on Saturday afternoon and was consistently fast in the first third of the race. After nightfall, their previously problem-free drive came to an end when the Porsche was rudely knocked out of the way by a faster vehicle at around 11 pm. The Cayman made it to the pit lane with severe damage, where the BLACK FALCON mechanics immediately began repairs. After replacing numerous parts, the #85 went back on track shortly after 1 a.m. and crashed again just a short time later during contact in the Dunlop-Kehre area. The team repaired the Porsche in record-breaking time the second time as well and sent the car back to the race before sunrise. The crew mastered the remaining race distance without further incidents and remained faultless even during constantly changing weather conditions in the final third of the race. After 24 hours, the battered Cayman crossed the finish line in sixth place in its class. At the end of the race, however, the vehicle was dropped from the classification because not all drivers had completed the prescribed minimum number of laps after the long repair stops.

Timo Frings, Head of Motorsport BLACK FALCON:
"The anniversary edition of the 24h race did not go according to plan for us, but in the end we are still happy about the second place in the CUP2 class after a chaotic race. Ben, Mehmet, Gabriele and Mike drove through one of the most turbulent 24h-races of the last years with a perfect performance and achieved-especially considering the strong competition and the puncture-a strong result. What's more, they crossed the finish line without a single scratch on the car - something that very few teams can claim.
A big compliment goes to our mechanics who repaired no less than three major damages during the night and thus experienced probably their most strenuous 24-hour race. We never gave up and in the end we finished with the Cayman despite two accidents - many thanks to everyone involved!"

Alexander Böhm, Managing Director BLACK FALCON:
"BLACK FALCON's 17th participation in the Nürburgring 24h race could hardly have been more dramatic and emotional. From a sporting point of view, things certainly didn't go well. We started the race very strong and were in promising positions for a long time. Unfortunately, we lacked the necessary racing luck in the middle third of the race. Despite numerous setbacks, however, the team got the maximum out of the race in the end.  In addition, our event team provided for many happy faces, for the first time since 2019 we were able to welcome more than 200 guests in the BLACK FALCON Tower Lounge. Therefore, my thanks go to our drivers, partners and all employees in the pit and lounge. This year, the numerous fans around the Nordschleife also once again provided the unmistakable atmosphere that we had sorely missed in 2020 and 2021. The Nürburgring 24h Race is and will remain a great motorsport adventure that none of us would want to miss."

 

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