Mario Farnbacher covered 16th position in the opener for the VLN Endurance Championship on the Nürburgring. Technical problems just before the start of the race as well as a time penalty prevented the German from a possible top-10 overall finish and a victory in the class for prototypes.
Mario Farnbacher and his brother Dominik travelled to the Nürburgring with high hopes. The two brothers, who claimed some decent results with the Lexus RC F GT3 already 2015, were able to tie to the good result from last season. However, before the starting lights for the season opener were switched off, Mario Farnbacher and his team had to overcome a tricky situation. Still on the way to the grid the 23-year-old discovered a fuel leakage inside the car, which was caused by a broken fuel pipe. “That’s really dangerous, because the fuel can easily catch fire at the hot parts in the car”, explained Farnbacher.
While the rest of the starting grid was already underway into the formation lap, the crew tried to fix the problem in the pit lane. They succeeded in the very last second and Mario Farnbacher was able to start into the race from the pit-lane. “It was a pity, because we had a good starting position. However, at least we took up the race and therefore a big thank you goes to our mechanics, who solved the problem in a record time”, Farnbacher looks back.
The Lexus driver started a brilliant hunt through the field and continuously improved positions. The two brothers went through the race distance of four hours without any further problems. Only a time penalty because of an issue in the pit lane caused another setback. “Without the penalty it would have been enough for tenth position in the overall classification. And further more we would have taken the victory in our class. Nevertheless I draw a positive balance after the first round of the year. That’s a good base to start from into the further course of the season.”, explains the Lexus driver.
The next race for Mario Farnbacher is scheduled on the Laguna Seca roller coaster from April 30th to May 1st. The race track in California is the venue for the next round of the SportsCar Championship. After a eighth place at the season opener in Daytona and a fourth rank at the second round in Sebring the hopes of the German ahead of the third round are high. “We are aiming for a top-three-finish. We snatched a podium finish in Laguna Seca already last season. There is a good chance to claim the first podium this year”, says Farnbacher.