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ADAC GT MASTERS 2021
TOUGH JOB AHEAD FOR CALLAWAY COMPETITION
The longest-serving and most successful team in the ADAC GT Masters, Callaway Competition, clinched its first championship win of the 2021 season at the Red Bull Ring and is now hoping to finally get back on track. Now the Corvette racing team from Leingarten faces another difficult task at the CM.com Circuit in Zandvoort, Netherlands.
The German GT championship series, the ADAC GT Masters, is getting more intense. After the first two events, in Oschersleben and on the Red Bull Ring, the premier German GT racing series will be visiting the Dutch North Sea coast in Zandvoort, July 9 to 11, on the spectacular racetrack which was rebuilt last year.
Certainly, Callaway Competition won’t be reinventing the wheel for the third round of the season, but the recent modifications on the Circuit Zandvoort track that opened in 1948 are apparent. Other than the track layout, you can barely make any comparisons with the previous course. New steep turns, the braking zone of the Tarzan curve without a gravel bed, new pit exit and expected tire wear will be even more challenging. Exciting duels and more passing maneuvers than before are to be expected. For the drivers and for the 3000 spectators, who will now be able to return to the grandstands for the third event of the “League of Super Sports Cars”, the renovation work promises a lot of excitement.
Unlike at the last event in the Austrian Alps at the Red Bull Ring, Callaway Competition is not one of the favorites this weekend. However, anything is possible in this championship series and, after its first win of the season, the Corvette team is highly motivated and focused on traveling to the North Sea.
Naturally, the two Callaway drivers Marvin Kirchhöfer (27 / Leipzig, Germany) and Jeffrey Schmidt (27 / Liestal, Switzerland) want to continue the team's current trend. However, we know that a difficult task awaits them on the 4.259 kilometer course.
“I'm really looking forward to Zandvoort. The last time we were there, things didn't go that well. At that time, we barely got the chance to get among the front runners. I hope this year will be different. The new racetrack has some innovations in store for us, which I’m also very excited about and looking forward to. I’m sure the weekend won’t be an easy one, if not our most difficult of all. But if we could get into the top five or top seven in the race, as we did in Oschersleben, that would be really good. I think anything else would be a bonus, as many drivers and teams have already driven there with the GT World Challenge and have already been able to gain experience. Of course, we’ll try to make the best of it.” Marvin Kirchhöfer
“I haven’t driven the Corvette in Zandvoort yet. Otherwise, it should really be fun there. Passing was never easy on the racetrack, so I'm all the more excited about the modifications. There is a kind of Daytona feeling due to the two new banked curves and that usually goes very well for me. I'm really looking forward to Zandvoort and the two steep turns. We want to take the momentum from the Red Bull Ring with us. It won’t be an easy weekend, but we’re all highly motivated and we’ll give it our all.” Jeffrey Schmidt
“Historically, Zandvoort has always been a tough nut to crack for our Corvette. The rebuilt sections of the track could help us somewhat, but I still expect difficulties on the unchanged sections of the course. We have to learn as effectively, quickly and as much as possible about the new course in the few sessions. The motivation in the team is at a very good level and our mental toughness is back." Mike Gramke (Team Principal)
NITRO will broadcast both races from 4:00 PM, local Netherlands time (GMT +2), on Saturday and Sunday live from the Zandvoort track. The two qualifying sessions and both races will also be livestreamed on TVNOW.de and adac.de/motorsport.
Text: A.Dannenberg / Motorsport-Karriere.de
Photo: Axel Weichert