On the 5.891 kilometre Silverstone circuit, famed for its fast corners, 25-year-old Eng crossed the finish line first ahead of Alex Riberas (E/The Heart of Racing by Lechner) and Michael Ammermüller (D/Lechner Racing Middle East). “I got away perfectly at the start and I’m over the moon with this important win. Silverstone is a demanding track and everything simply ran very smoothly for me,” said Eng, after receiving his trophy. With 70 points, Eng ranks first in the drivers’ standings after four of eleven championship rounds.
A total of 31 competitors from 13 countries headed into the Silverstone weekend on Friday with their 460 hp Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race cars. By Sunday, Eng was the undisputed man of the series, claiming pole position in qualifying and victory at Sunday’s race. From the first race of the season in Barcelona, Eng’s form has continued on an upward trajectory. At the season-opener he finished on fourth, in Monaco and Spielberg he clinched second, and now at Silverstone the Salzburg-born racer finally netted his first Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup win of the season.
Riberas was another strong contender this weekend. As the fastest in practice and the second fastest in qualifying, the Lechner pilot kept Eng under constant pressure and at times even came within 0.3-seconds of the leader. “When I saw the packed grandstands during the formation lap it motivated me even more. I really enjoyed racing against Philipp and from Budapest I’ll be aiming for the top of the points table,” declared Riberas with a grin. After securing a podium spot in Spielberg, second place at Silverstone marks his best result of the season and has boosted his ranking in the championship from fourth to second place.
Ammermüller took off into the race from third on the grid to finish third at the flag. The points he earned for this has now put him third in the overall standings. Ben Barker (GB/MOMO-Megatron Team Partrax) as the best British contender scored fourth in his Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, which is based on the lightweight 911 GT3 sports car, relegating Christian Engelhart (D/MRS GT-Racing) to the fifth spot.
For sixth place, Porsche Junior Matteo Cairoli (I/Market Leader Team by Project 1) not only pocketed the all-important points towards the rookie classification, but also kept his cool in the midst of turmoil. “The race went well for me and I managed to gain one position in the first lap. I’m an ambitious racer and I’m constantly trying to do everything better, and that’s why I’m never totally satisfied when all is said and done,” explained Cairoli.
Porsche Juniors Sven Müller (D/Lechner Racing Middle East) and Connor de Phillippi (USA/VERVA Lechner Racing Team) headed into the race behind Cairoli from positions eight and nine and promptly clashed in the first lap: Müller spun off as a result and de Phillippi fell down the field to position 24: From there, the American took up the chase over 13 laps to ultimately take the flag in 14th. “In the first corner Sven and my cars touched. We need to see exactly how it happened. My car was very good and I was able to overtake a lot,” de Phillippi analysed. Müller commented: “My race was over after the first lap. My steering was damaged as a result of the clash and the race went on without me.”
The best pursuit of the day went to rookie Côme Ledogar (F/Martinet by Almeras): The Frenchman took up the race from 15th on the grid and was flagged off as eighth. As a guest starter from the Porsche Carrera Cup Great Britain, Dan Cammish (GB/Redline Racing) gave an inspired display of his skill to finish ninth. Jeffrey Schmidt (CH/The Heart of Racing by Lechner) rounded off the top ten.
Four different winners from four rounds show just how intense the competition is in the strongly-supported Porsche one-make race series: Ammermüller won in Barcelona, the Dutchman Jaap van Lagen triumphed in Monaco for his Fach Auto Tech squad, Christopher Zöchling (A/Fach Auto Tech) came first at Spielberg and now Eng has claimed victory at Silverstone.
The Hungaroring in Budapest/Hungary hosts the next Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup meeting from 24 to 26 July. Poland’s Kuba Giermaziak (VERVA Lechner Racing Team) won here last year: “Hungary is almost like a home race for me. Until now the season hasn’t really gone very well, but I’m hopeful that I can pick up from where I left off last year on the Hungaroring,” says Giermaziak.
Hungary is also a home event for the team from Förch Racing by Lukas Motorsport. Team principal Wieslaw Lukas has already competed there this year in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Eastern Europe that he has organised.
1. Philipp Eng (A/Market Leader Team by Project 1)
2. Alex Riberas (E/The Heart of Racing by Lechner)
3. Michael Ammermüller (D/Lechner Racing Middle East)
4. Ben Barker (GB/MOMO-Megatron Team Partrax)
5. Christian Engelhart (D/MRS GT-Racing)
6. Matteo Cairoli (I/Market Leader Team by Project 1)
7. Christopher Zöchling (A/Fach Auto Tech)
8. Côme Ledogar (F/Martinet by Almeras)
9. Dan Cammish (GB/Redline Racing)
10. Jeffrey Schmidt (CH/The Heart of Racing by Lechner)
Points’ standings after 4 of 11 races:
1. Philipp Eng (A/Market Leader Team by Project 1), 70 points
2. Alex Riberas (E/The Heart of Racing by Lechner), 56
3. Michael Ammermüller (D/Lechner Racing Middle East), 55
4. Christian Engelhart (D/MRS GT-Racing), 54
5. Ben Barker (GB/MOMO-Megatron Team Partrax), 37