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ELMS 4 Hours of Portimão

The season finale of the 2018 European Le Mans Series was held at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve, a 4.692 km race circuit located in Portimão, in the south of Portugal.  

A total of 39 teams (15 LMP2, 18 LMP3 and 6 GTE teams) started in the season finale of the European Le Mans Series. The G-Drive duo of Roman Rusinov and Andrea Pizzitola already claimed the title in the LMP2 class at the last round in Spa-Francorchamps, but the title decisions in the LMP3 and the GTE classes were still open.

I could not imagine a better venue to stage the ELMS finale. This amazing circuit with its constantly undulating nature and plenty of twists and turns, resembles a roller-coaster ride and has a dangerous edge that reminds me of a modern version of Spa-Francorchamps or sections of the Nordschleife.

The race started on Sunday under sunny skies but with strong northerly wind blowing that brought cold temperatures to the circuit.

With a lot to fight for during the weekend, the entire race turned out to be a nail-biting finale. In the end it was the United Autosports Ligier-Gibson (22) of Filipe Albuquerque and Phil Hanson who took a second consecutive victory crossing the line just 0.5 seconds ahead of Will Stevens in the Panis Barthez Competition Ligier (23). The G-Drive Racing Oreca (26), finished in 3rd place but was given a 10 second penalty for an earlier track limits infringement promoting the United Autosports Ligier (32) of Will Owen to the final podium position.

The Inter Europol Competition Ligier (13) duo of Martin Hippe and Jakub Smiechowski took a maiden victory for the Polish team in the LMP3 category. However, it was the RLR MSport Ligier crew (15) of Job Van Uitert, John Farano and Rob Garofall who finished in 5th place and in doing so, clinched the 2018 LMP3 Driver and Team titles.

In the LMGTE category, it was the Proton Competition (77) Porsche 911 of Christian Ried, Dennis Olsen and Marvin Dienst, who took the chequered flag and scored its first win of the 2018 season.

Gianluca and Giorgio Roda together with their Italian teammate Matteo Cairoli became the first Father and Son driver pairing to win an ELMS title by bringing the Proton Competition Porsche (88) home in third place. In doing so, they secured both the Team and Driver titles.

The 2018 European Le Mans Series is now over and the countdown to the 2019 season opener at Le Castellet in April 2019 has started.

 

 

ELMS 4 Hours Silverstone 2018

Rendezvous at Silverstone Circuit for the ELMS and the FIA WEC Super Season weekend double header. This is the only time in the season that both series meet and in doing so provide a total of 10 hours of race action in one weekend (4 hours of ELMS and 6 Hours of WEC).

The 4 hours of Silverstone European Le Mans Series race took place on Saturday and was won by the G-Drive Racing (26) trio Roman Rusinov, Andrea Pizzitola and Jean-Eric Vergne. They proved once again to be unbeatable after their third victory in four races, strengthening their lead in the championship as their rivals struggled around them. Their closest rival Racing Engineering (24) crashed out due to a mechanical failure with half an hour to go promoting the Dragonspeed (21) trio Hendrik Hedman, Ben Hanley and Nicolas Lapierre to second place. The IDEC Sports (28) trio Paul Lafargue, Paul Loup-Chatin and Memo Rojas slipped to third place due to a splash & dash in the closing stages of the race.

In the LMP3 category, United Autosports (3) trio Anthony Wells, Garret Grist and Matthew Bell took the win, followed by the Ecurie Ecosse/Nielsen Team (7) of Colin Noble, Alex Kapadia and Christian Stubbe-Olsen. Third was the Ultimate Racing Norma M30 (17) of Matthieu and Jean-Baptiste Lahaye with François Heriau.

The GTE class delivered a dramatic finish, determined by 10 second time penalties for the two leading Ferraris and a collision in the last corner for the pursuing Proton Porsche driven by Matteo Cairoli. In the end the Proton Competition (88) Matteo Cairoli, Gianluca Roda and Giorgio Roda were beaten to the finish line by the British JMW Motorsport (66) Ferrari trio Miguel Molina, Liam Griffin and Alex MacDowall by a meager 0.124s.

Enjoy some of the race action from the ELMS weekend with a selection of photos captured throughout the weekend.

Also, stay tuned for a photo-reportage of the FIA WEC race that will be featured in a separate Blog Post.

 

 

ELMS 4 Hours of the Red Bull Ring

Set in the idyllic mountains of the Steiermark, the Red Bull Ring was host to the third round of the 2018 European Le Mans Series championship. This historic circuit (known as Zeltweg in the 70s) got a major revamp in recent years and is now an ultramodern and stunning racetrack with all the state-of-the-art facilities a racetrack can dream of.

Breath-taking views and ever-changing weather conditions added to the drama throughout the weekend and was a guarantee for exciting racing.

Top spot went to G-Drive Racing (26, Roman Rusinov, Jean-Eric Vergne, Andrea Pizzitola) followed by Racing Engineering (24, Norman Nato, Olivier Pla, Paul Petit) and United Autosports (22, Philip Hanson, Filipe Albuquerque) in third place. Winners in the LMP3 category were RLR MSport (15, John Farano, Job van Uitert, Rob Garofall) and Proton Competition (88, Gian Luca Roda, Giorgio Roda, Matteo Cairoli) took the LMGTE Class victory.

It has been more than 35 years since I last visited this circuit, and just like then, this weekend will remain etched in my memory. Fantastic!

When all stars align, Spa Classic 2018

Blue skies, the smell of spring, the sound of music.

The circuit of Spa-Francorchamps is draped over the hilly Ardennes countryside and has attracted racing drivers and fans from all over the world as long as it has existed. Just as you think it could not get any better, add some Group C cars, Classic Endurance Racing, Euro F2 Classic, Heritage Touring Cup, Sixties Endurance and plenty more and you have Spa Classic 2018.

I was privileged enough to enjoy this weekend from very close and would like to share a small selection of photos from this brilliant event.

If you are looking for a photographer to cover your events, feel free to get in touch.

The Oldtimer Grand Prix meets Sleeklens

The Oldtimer Grand Prix takes place once a year at the Nürburgring in Germany. It is an event in which around 500 historic race-cars from the 20s until the 80s take part and share track time. Each category boasts a great number of very special cars in their line-up varying from touring cars and DTM right to F1. There are plenty of highlights to talk about during this amazing weekend.

I am not a portrait photographer so when Sleeklens asked me to try out their portrait presets I decided to apply these to my domain, classic racing photography. Each photo uses a different combination of their presets to create a unique look. Despite not using the Sleeklens presets as intended (for portrait photography), I was impressed with what they do and how this effects the end result.

Sleeklens offers an endless amount of possibilities to enhance your photography results. I hope you like my photos and that you check out the Lightroom presets from www.sleeklens.com for your own work.

www.sleeklens.com