Spa RST: Owens and Blomstedt Win
Courtesy of Rachit Thukral at Motorsport.com:
The #2 R-Ace GP entry of Raoul Owens and Fredrik Blomstedt emerged victorious in the RST endurance race at Spa as Robert Kubica finished on the podium on his debut outing.
The race got off to a chaotic start as several drivers went wide at La Source, initiating a chain reaction. Diederik Sijthoff headed straight into the barriers in the #4 Oregon, spinning back onto the track and collecting #4 V8 Racing’s Andres Mendez.
The #11 High Class Racing car of Dennis Anderson also got caught in the melee, with the resultant debris on track leading to a lengthy safety car period.
When the action resumed, Fabian Schiller led the pack in the #9 Marc VDS entry, heading #2 R-Ace GP’s Frederik Blomstedt and the #19 Equipe Verschuur of Miguel Ramos.
Blomstedt was last of the frontrunners to make a pit stop, handing the #2 R-Ace GP car to Raoul Owens. While Owens came out in touching distance of the race-leading #9 Marc VDS, now driven by Markus Palttala, a costly mistake at Pouhon dropped him down to third place.
Pieter Schothorst in the #21 Equipe Verschuur – which was handed a 15 second penalty for not respecting the minimum pit stop time – later dispatched Owens to move up to third place, setting up a three-way fight for victory.
Pieter first pulled a move over #19 Equipe Verschuur’s Steijn Schothorst at the Bus Stop Chicane, before passing Palttala at Les Combes to take over the lead.
Palttala and Steijn Schothorst then banged wheels at turn 1, the former incurring a puncture and dropping the order. The latter was handed a 25 second penalty for the incident, which dropped him down to fifth.
At the front, Pieter finished first on road, but was classified second due to the aforementioned penalty, handing the race win to Owens and the #2 R-Ace GP crew.
Behind, Kubica made a late move over Sathienthirakul at the Bus Stop chicane to steal the final spot on the podium. The #16 car ran fourth for majority of the first stint under Christophe Hamon, before a contact with Rueda dropped it down the order.
The Pole, however, was able to recover in the second part of the race to finish in third place.
Behind the podium finishers, #4 R-Ace GP car took fourth ahead of the aforementioned #19 Equipe Verschuur.