Another feisty opening race of the GT4 European Series leads to two AMR podium finishes

Saturday, April 06, 2024


Europe’s best GT4 series got underway from the Circuit Paul Ricard in France earlier today as a massive forty-eight strong grid raced the opening race of the GT4 European Series with eight Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT4’s amongst them.

Presenting a convenient formation of two such cars from the Racing Spirit of Leman, Prosport Racing, GPA Racing and Mirage Racing between them, it was the #99 Prosport entry of Hugo Sasse who was best placed after Q1, starting today’s opening hour-long race in P3 with the #7 Mirage Racing AMR of Stanislav Safronov alongside in P4 as this race also presented another race in 2019 AMR Vantage GT4 competing against the brand new 2024 Vantage GT4 Evo again.

Tempered slightly by a T1 Safety car requirement after mid pack contact, both leading Aston’s held track position relative to their starting position whilst the #5 Mirage AMR of Ruben Del Sarte found himself under intense pressure slightly further back.

After the pit stop, the #99 of Raphael Rennhofer continued to hold third overall whilst the new #7 Mirage car of Aleksandr Vaintrub held onto the Pro-Am lead in P5. Further back Josh Miller was peddling his #5 Mirage AMR hard to elevate his track position after Ruben Del Sarte had become otherwise distracted into on-track battles that would drop them down the order.

The #72 GPA Racing duo of Florent Grizaud and Kevin Jimenez were doing what they do best within their Am Class after the former had qualified their rebranded AMR second and for Jimenez to maintain that position after the stop.

With just ten minutes remaining, disaster struck the #99 Prosport car as Rennhofer suffered a mechanical failure of the front which left a wheel wobbling precariously as he tried to limp back to the pit lane and Miller became the lead Aston Martin runner in P6.

Onto the final lap, contact for the #72 car slowed the GPA racing Aston Martin down but Jimenez was able to drag his car home to claim a P2 Am podium finish but after the race, the #5 Mirage of Miller/Del Sarte Aston Martin was given a five second time penalty (track limits) which then placed it behind the #82 Racing Spirit of Leman and #100 Prosport Racing Aston Martin in P7, P8 and P9 respectively.

In Pro-Am however, the #7 Mirage Racing Aston Martin won their class.

Tomorrows race should be much of the same!

Photo credits - Series
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