Thomas Preining Secures Porsche Carrera Cup Germany Title with Hockenheim Victory
He had to do an extra lap, as the chequered flag for some reason did not come out quite in time – but that did not prevent BWT Lechner Racing driver Thomas Preining from winning his ninth race of the Porsche Carrera Cup Germany 2018, also securing the championship title with one race still to go tomorrow. “I came here with the same approach as usual – to win the two races, and of course it´s fantastic that winning the first one now already brought me the title”, the 20-year-old Austian was beaming all over his face after having celebrated already with a few donuts on track. “After the first weekend of the season at Oschersleben, which did not go well at all, I already did not believe in it any more. But from then on things turned very much to the better, I had a great year. Thanks especially to my team which gave me such a great support.”
Preining dominated the race from pole position, also a four-lap safety-car-period quite at the beginning, when Richard Wagner had crashed heavily into the walls, did not give him any troubles. Behind the Porsche Junior his BWT Lechner Racing teammate Michael Ammermüller, also runner-up in the championship currently 32 point behind, finished in P2. Having started from P4, the Bavarian made his way up past Jaap van Lagen, the Dutchman spinning out after touching Ammermüller in a very close fight for P3, and Dylan Pereira. “Second was the best I could do today”, he admitted, “congratulations to Thomas, but I hope I can make up for the result here by defending my title in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup in the final in Mexico in October.”
Lechner Racing driver Pereira, having started from P2, was rather unlucky as while getting passed by Ammermüller, Larry ten Voorde tried to make use of the situation from behind. He could not get by, but pushed the 21-year old from Luxembourg into a spin, which dropped him back to P8. But a very good recovery race and a drive-through penalty for ten Voorde for causing the collision got Pereira back in P5 in the end. “Maybe I got myself a little bit into trouble as I got dirt on my tyres while I went a bit too wide once. That´s why Michael got hold of me. But this still does not justify somebody else spinning me around. At least I could re-take the lead in the rookie championship, so tomorrow I will do everything to bring home this title.” Pereira goes into the last race on Sunday with a three-point-lead ahead of his main rival Igor Walilko, with him starting in P3 and the polish driver only in P13... His teammate Jean-Baptiste Simmenauer, having himself established again in the Top 10 for quite some time, was the victim of a collision with Henric Skoog, while guest starter Al Faisal al Zubair finished in P11.
“Congratulations to Thomas for winning the championship in such an impressive way”, team principals Walter Lechner sr. and jr. were united in praise for their young driver. “He did a fantastic season, did not lose his nerves after a harsh start and proved he is really one of the great upcoming talents in motor racing. But even if he said he will already celebrate at least a bit tonight, we as a team will stay completely focused on tomorrows race, trying to end the season with another great result and hopefully Dylan Pereira winning the rookie title as well.”