Brno: Jet Alliance Win After Missing the Previous Round

Jet Alliance took the win after withdrawing from the last round due to safety issues

The Brno Circuit in the Czech Republic lived up to its reputation for providing nail-biting finishes today, when despite autumnal temperatures, a thrilling race took place around the 5.403 km track. Victory went to Jetalliance’s Aston Martin DBR9 in GT1, while AF Corse stepped back to the top of the podium with a win in GT2. With three rounds remaining, the points are closing up in GT1, while GT2 sees AF Corse move ever closer to the Teams titles.


Jetalliance bounced back from missing Bucharest to claim their third win of the season, with a fine victory in Brno - effectively the team’s home race - for the nr 33 Aston Martin DBR9 of Karl Wendlinger and Ryan Sharp. The duo crossed the line eight seconds ahead of the nr 6 Phoenix Carsport Corvette of Mike Hezemans and Fabrizio Gollin, with the nr 3 SRT Corvette of Bouchut and Maassen taking third. “It’s been a very good race, the car has handled very well, it was very consistent and it allowed us to push at the end of the race. I had things under control; I didn’t have to go over the limit, just drive as fast as possible,” Wendlinger commented. “The last 2 races have been a bit disappointing, so to bounce back we have to win as many races as possible to try and get back into a good championship position by the end of the season,” Sharp added.

Wendlinger pulled away from pole position, but behind him a first-lap chain reaction took out at least four cars, including the nr 10 Gigawave Aston Martin, the nr 13 RBImmo Saleen S7R, the nr 4 PK Carsport Saleen S7R and the pole-sitting CR Scuderia Ferrari 430 GT2. Wendlinger’s team-mate Alex Müller slotted in second position, but was later deemed to have caused the start accident and was awarded a five grid place penalty for the next event in which he competes in the Championship. The nr 6 Corvette was also damaged, pitting for repairs and an early driver change.

Wendlinger led throughout his stint, followed by Müller in the second Jetalliance car, and by Marcel Fässler in the nr 5 Phoenix Carsport Corvette. Just before the end of the first hour, Bouchut took over the wheel of the nr 3 Corvette from Xavier Maassen. As the other cars made their second stop, Bouchut stayed out, pulling out a lead of 36 seconds from Wendlinger’s Aston before making the second obligatory pit stop with just two laps remaining. Maassen emerged in second behind the nr 33 Aston, setting up a thrilling final charge for the line between him and the two Phoenix Racing Corvettes. On the last lap, Mike Hezemans managed to get past the SRT Corvette, but the three cars continued to fight until the chequered flag. Hezemans took second, despite the damage to his Corvette, with Maassen third and Fässler fourth. The nr 36 Jetalliance Aston Martin of Müller and Lichtner-Hoyer finished fifth.

Championship leaders Bertolini and Bartels finished in sixth place in the nr 1 Vitaphone Maserati MC 12, maintaining their lead in the points and allowing them to reduce their handicap weight for the next round in Nogaro. They finished once place ahead of their team-mates Ramos and Negrao, who had been caught up in the first-lap commotions. ACA Argentina took the final point for eighth, giving Martin Basso his first FIA GT point.


Second place today allowed Hezemans and Gollin to move up to second in the GT1 Drivers classification; they are now just 11 points behind Bertolini and Bartels, with three rounds remaining and everything still to play for. Behind them, the points remain close, with only 12 points separating Simonsen/Peter in seventh from Hezemans and Gollin in second. Negrão and Ramos are third, ahead of Bucharest winners Fässler and Deletraz, with Wendlinger and Sharp fifth and Bouchut/Maassen sixth.

Phoenix Carsport Racing scored 13 points in the Teams Classification in Brno, strengthening their second place, 22.5 points behind Vitaphone. Jetalliance are third, ahead of SRT.

Vitaphone Maserati had some issues during the race


In GT2, Vilander and Bruni extended their Championship lead with a fourth win of the season in the nr 50 AF Corse Ferrari 430 GT2. They finished ahead of newcomer K plus K Motorsport, whose Porsche was driven by Czech driver Jiri Janak and Tim Bergmeister to a fine second place and a maiden podium. Third place went to BMS Scuderia Italia, with their nr 77 Ferrari 430 GT2 of Paolo Ruberti and Matteo Malucelli, strengthening their second place in the GT2 points after an excellent fight back up the field after going wide to avoid the first corner problems, rejoining at the back of the field.

“ My stint was very nice, and the car went well. We’ve been making small adjustments all weekend and that seems to have worked,” Bruni commented. “I don’t mind getting the extra weight back at Nogaro; it’ll get rid of the understeer, which I hate. We’ll see. Every race is a different story.”

GT2 also got off to a busy start, with Bruni getting the advantage at the start when the nr 56 CR Scuderia was caught up in the start problems. He pulled away, followed by the nr 55 CR Scuderia car, the nr 61 Prospeed Porsche and the nr 79 K plus K Motorsport Porsche. However, while Mullen and Collard were fighting, Janak and Russo, in the nr 95 Advanced Engineering Pecom Ferrari, slipped through to take second and third, with the nr 79 car taking the lead when Bruni made his first stop. At the start of the second hour, the nr 61 Prospeed Porsche retired with engine problems. This left the nr 79 K plus K car second, with BMS Scuderia ‘s nr 77 Ferrari third, which remained the order until the end.

The nr 51 AF Corse Ferrari, which had suffered mechanical problems in qualifying and started from near the back of the grid, put in a fine performance to climb back up to fourth, finishing ahead of the nr 60 Prospeed Competition Porsche of Forsten and Paltalla, the Finnish duo claiming their best result of the season. Sixth went to the nr 95 Advanced Engineering Pecom Racing Team Ferrari of Russo and Perez-Companc, ahead of the Kessel Racing Ferrari of Del Monte and Moser, and the Scuderia Ecosse car of Davies and Babini.


With a third consecutive Teams title in their sights, AF Corse moved a step closer today, with a win and a fourth place for their two Ferrari 430 GT2 cars. They now have 104 points, 43 more than their nearest rivals BMS Scuderia Italia, and with just 54 points still available in the Teams classification. BMS are followed by CR Scuderia, who failed to score today, and Prospeed Competition.


Returning to the FIA GT Championship for this round, AT Racing’s Corvette C5R finished in 19th position overall to win the Citation Cup for Gentlemen drivers. “Brno is a very nice track. We wanted to get a better result, but we had a problem with the gearbox yesterday, but the car still wasn’t working very well, so we were just hoping to finish the race,” Talkanitsa explained.


“This hasn’t been our best result, but it’s been our best performance of the year,” explained Bas Leinders of their 20th overall finish in their nr 101 Belgian Racing Gillet Vertigo. “We weren’t far away from the GT2 cars and managed to have some fights at the beginning of the race which was quite good. “


The next round of the FIA GT Championship takes place in Nogaro, France, on October 4th / 5th. “We’ll try to win at the next race in France. It’s my home race and I’ll be pushing harder there,” SRT’s Christophe Bouchut commented.