Darren Turner and Stefan Mucke performed a perfect demonstration of how to win a world championship GT race today when they took victory at the 6 Hours of Shanghai, the penultimate round of the 2013 FIA World Endurance Championship.
This result means the pair leapfrog from third in the GT driver’s world championship to first place, setting the scene for a tense season finale in Bahrain in three weeks time.
Every single point counts at this stage of the season so Darren and Stefan went all out yesterday to take the extra point for pole position.
“The qualifying session was the hardest of the year,” explained Darren. “So to take pole and an extra point was great.”
With that in the bag the focus turned to today’s six-hour race, which saw Darren behind the wheel of the No.97 Aston Martin Vantage GTE for the rolling start.
Darren got away well and soon settled into the race, pulling out a gap to the Ferrari behind him. Both No.97 drivers had great pace in the first half of the race but things began to change in the second half so they paced themselves to the Ferrari in third place as the sister No.99 Aston Martin was in second.
“The car was brilliant for most of the race and we’re not yet sure why it wasn’t as good during the second half.” said Darren. “Thankfully though the No.99 was there to help take points away from the others.”
What Darren and Stefan needed to do in Shanghai was leave with maximum points. That mission was accomplished and now all they have to do is do it again in their quest to be crowned World Champions in Bahrain.
“The whole team did an amazing job this weekend,” said Darren. “To get a one-two in both qualifying and the race is brilliant. I was surprised to discover we had gone from being 8.5 points behind the championship leaders to 5.5 points ahead all in one weekend. We now need to stay very focused for Bahrain as there is a title up for grabs and we want it to be ours!”