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The start of this season’s VLN Endurance Championship at the Nürburgring finished with both Falken vehicles amongst the Top 10 competitors. Klaus Bachler and Jörg Bergmeister achieved an impressive fourth place for the de-but of the new Porsche 911 GT3 R, while Jens Klingmann und Alexandre Impe-ratori also finished in a very respectable eighth position in the BMW M6 GT3.
Due to thick fog, which initially caused a four-hour delay in qualifying, it was decid-ed to shorten the session from one-and-a-half to just one hour. With a total of 169 participating vehicles, it was accordingly congested on the 24.358 km Nürburgring-Nordschleife. The Falken vehicles nevertheless succeeded in making a good show-ing, the BMW finishing in seventh place in 8:03.505 minutes, and the Porsche in eighth place in 8:03.600 minutes.
The race, which was shortened from originally four to two-and-three-quarter hours, was characterised by gentlemanly skirmishes for positions, and was awaited with great anticipation. Ultimately, all of the GT3 teams had to implement a 5% power re-duction which was ordered by the race organiser at short notice, and test for the first time under racing conditions.
Klaus Bachler enjoyed a magnificent start, initially battling his way forward to third place in the Porsche 911 GT3 R. Alexandre Imperatori defended his starting position in the BMW M6 GT3, handing over later to Jens Klingmann. “Our BMW was well placed throughout the entire race, and the tyres performed excellently,” the BMW factory driver said after his stint. Porsche driver, Jörg Bergmeister, was also unable to hide his enthusiasm: “The shortened race time prevented us from conducting all the planned tests, and there were also a few things we’d have liked to have opti-mised. But the vehicle already has an extremely high performance level, which was rewarded with fourth place.”
The Falken team’s next appearance will be on 13 April 2019 at the 44th DMV 4h Race at the Nürburgring.