Moreover, top drivers, who due to the rainy qualifying session started unusually far down the grid, delivered brilliant performances to catch up. Monaco winner Harry King, for example, improved from 11th on the grid to finish third. And five-time motorbike world champion Jorge Lorenzo made up 15 positions in the 375 kW (510 PS) Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
The two duelled to the limit of what was permitted in a 32-strong field of technically identical racing cars. Over the entire race distance, Porsche Junior Bastian Buus and polesitter Larry ten Voorde lapped the Formula 1 race track in Styria virtually glued to each other’s bumpers. Several times, the Dane from the local Austrian team BWT Lechner Racing and the Dutchman from GP Elite swapped places at the head of the field. Occasionally they drove wheel-to-wheel, looking for the best racing line and optimal braking point. On the penultimate lap, Buus made the decisive overtaking move – in a last-ditch effort, he squeezed past ten Voorde to secure his third victory in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup with an advantage of two-tenths of a second.
“I noticed that I was faster than Larry,” stated Buus, who had started from the third grid spot into the second race of the season in the international one-make cup with the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. “At first I couldn’t find a way past him. In the second half of the race, I pulled alongside him several times and sometimes even just in front of him. But he immediately took his position back. I knew that the breaking point before the first corner would be perhaps my only chance. I tried it – and it worked.”
Despite occasional contact, two-time Supercup champion Larry ten Voorde was also delighted with his clash against the 20-year-old Buus. “We were both at the limit but that’s part of the Supercup. I just wasn’t fast enough today and, to be honest, I was a little surprised that I was able to keep Bastian behind me for so long. I fought like a lion.”
Further wild scenes unfolded behind the two aspirants for victory. Because some of the top drivers fluffed their qualifying in rainy conditions and tackled the race from unusually far down the grid, the race was also marked by countless overtaking manoeuvres in the midfield. Harry King, winner of the opening round in Monaco, put in a spirited drive. The UK racer headed into the race from P11 and for a while even dropped back to 16th. Midway through the race, he made the most of a short safety car phase to work his way up the order and into the leading group. Two laps before the flag, he appeared in the rear-view mirror of his teammate Bastian Buus, who was still in second place at the time.
It didn’t go further up for King, but he was more than happy with third place. “That was hard work, but great fun. I took some bravery and ambitious overtaking,” admitted the 22-year-old. With this result, King defended his lead in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup standings, equal on points with Porsche Junior Bastian Buus. A one-two Supercup overall lead for BWT Lechner Racing – and a perfect result at the home race for the Austrian-based team.
Dorian Boccolacci was another driver who improved significantly on his starting position. Competing for the CLRT squad, the Frenchman gained 13 places to take the flag in fifth place behind Germany’s Leon Köhler (Team Huber Racing). However, the best performance of the day went to former motorbike world champion Jorge Lorenzo. The Spaniard, who contests his first Supercup season for Huber Racing, made up 15 places and earned his first championship point – the first ever motorbike world champion to do so in the history of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup.
Victory in the rookie classification was claimed by Huub van Eijndhoven. The GP Elite driver from the Netherlands finished 6th overall. Frenchman Alessandro Ghiretti (Martinet by Alméras) and Belgian Benjamin Paque (CLRT) completed the podium of the Supercup rookies.
“That was one of the most dramatic races in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup in recent years. It wasn’t just Bastian Buus and Larry ten Voorde who treated the fans to racing at its best. Harry King’s charge through the field and the fights for position in the midfield also provided plenty of thrills. Two drivers tied at the top of the standings after two races – the 2023 season continues to be extremely exciting,” commented Oliver Schwab, Project Manager Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup.
Next race this coming weekend in Silverstone
Already next weekend, drivers will head to round three of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup at the British Grand Prix (7 to 9 July 2023). The Silverstone Circuit approximately 100 kilometres north of London is one of several British racetracks that originally served as an airfield for the Royal Air Force. The “Home of British Motor Racing” hosted the first Formula 1 race in history in 1950. Since 1994, the Porsche Supercup has been a regular feature on today’s 5.891-kilometre course, which is one of the fastest on the calendar of the international one-make cup. Victory last year was clinched by the then Porsche Junior Laurin Heinrich.
Result round 2 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, Spielberg (Austria)
1. Porsche Junior Bastian Buus (DK/BWT Lechner Racing), 29.08.981 minutes
2. Larry ten Voorde (NL/Team GP Elite), +0.219 seconds
3. Harry King (UK/BWT Lechner Racing), +0.733 seconds
4. Leon Köhler (D/Huber Racing), +1.580 seconds
5. Dorian Boccolacci (F/CLRT), +2.935 seconds
Standings 2023 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup (after two of eight races)
1. Harry King (UK/BWT Lechner Racing), 42 points
2. Porsche-Junior Bastian Buus (DK/BWT Lechner Racing), 42 points
3. Larry ten Voorde (NL/Team GP Elite), 40 points
The rookie from the Italian team Ombra Racing narrowly beat Bastian Buus for second. The Porsche Junior from Denmark shares the second grid row with Leon Köhler from Germany. The race run as part of the Austrian Grand Prix support programme gets underway on Sunday at 11:40 am CEST.
A damp track, increasingly heavy rain, drying asphalt, and two red flags: the qualifying session for round two of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup on the Red Bull Ring required strong nerves: “First I opted for slicks and that was no good. Then I switched to rain tyres – too late, another mistake. Only my third attempt with dry tyres was right, the timing was perfect,” said Larry ten Voorde describing the hectic qualifying. The Dutchman from the GP Elite squad was, in fact, one of the very few drivers who managed to turn two flying laps on an almost dry track in the few minutes left after the last interruption.
Keagan Masters applied a similarly clever approach. The 23-year-old South African tackles his first season in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup. In Spielberg, the rookie came out of the pits ahead of ten Voorde, but let the Dutchman pass. Behind the GP Elite 911, Masters then turned an excellent lap on the Formula 1 circuit in Styria. “Nevertheless, I made a few minor mistakes. That mustn’t happen to me in the race on Sunday, otherwise I’ll lose my second position very quickly,” he said.
Porsche Junior Bastian Buus experienced a less fortunate qualifying. “I only managed one lap at the end, which was not enough,” analysed the 20-year-old. “Apart from that, I’d set up my 911 for drier conditions. The speed is good, things should go better for me in the race.” Buus set the third fastest time in the 375 kW (510 PS) Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
The Dane’s teammate at BWT Lechner Racing, Harry King, was even less satisfied. After winning the opening round in Monaco, the UK driver travelled to the Red Bull Ring as the Supercup overall leader. However, he only managed the tenth-fastest time in qualifying. “I managed only one flying lap after the last red flag – and I got stuck in traffic. I’m facing a tough job in tomorrow’s race,” stated King.
Local team Lechner Racing: 20 years after first Supercup podium
The Supercup race at the Austrian Grand Prix represents a home race for Lechner Racing, the team founded by Walter Lechner Senior, who passed away in 2020. “We have great memories of Styria and all of the older versions of this circuit. As children, we spent a lot of time at the Österreichring because our father’s racing school was there,” says Robert Lechner, who now runs the team together with his brother Walter Junior. Both have contested races on the circuit, which was called the A1-Ring from 1996. In 2003, Lechner Racing joined the Porsche Supercup. That same year, Walter Junior stood on the Supercup podium for the first time – fittingly, on his home circuit.
In 2011, the 4.318-kilometre Formula 1 circuit was renamed to Red Bull Ring. Lechner Racing is still one of the most successful teams in the Austrian Supercup races: drivers from the Salzburg-based squad have won several times – last season, for example, victory went to the eventual Supercup champion Dylan Pereira. Now, Porsche Junior Bastian Buus hopes to add another trophy to the Lechner collection on Sunday.
TV and internet coverage of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup race
Round two of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup on the Red Bull Ring will get underway on Sunday (2 July 2023) from 11:40 am CEST and runs over 18 laps. TV channels Eurosport and Sky Sport provide a live broadcast of the race, with the streaming service f1tv.formula1.com also televising the race.
Qualifying result, Round 2 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, Spielberg (Austria)
1. Larry ten Voorde (NL/Team GP Elite), 1.32.186 minutes
2. Keagan Masters (ZA/Ombra Racing), 1.32.812 minutes
3. Porsche Junior Bastian Buus (DK/BWT Lechner Racing), 1.32.967 minutes
4. Leon Köhler (D/Huber Racing), 1.32.993 minutes
5. Jaap van Lagen (NL/Dinamic Motorsport), 1.33.047 minutes
Full qualifying results