McLaren wins the 1,000 kilometres of the Paul Ricard


The 1,000 kilometres of the Paul Ricard have finished with
victory of the McLaren 650S GT3 #58, driven by Shane Van Gisbergen, Like
Ledogar and Rob Bell
. In a race to failure and, in which the leaders of the
Blancpain GT Series and the Endurance Cup have been left out of the game, the team
Garage 59 has scored his second win. Andy Soucek is the doors
of victory with the Bentley Continental GT3 #8 after suffering a fire in
, so it has been relegated to the fourth position after the Ferrari 488 GT3 #50 and
the Audi R8 LMS #3. Remarkable role of the Spanish pilots in the French track.

The pole will lasted a sigh the Ferrari 488 AWG #50, which took the riders from M-Sport in place of the two Bentley Continental GT3 in the lead. In a startup’s meteoric, Rob Bell wore the McLaren 650S GT3 in third position, , although before the first half hour of the race he lost this position in front of the Ferrari of Matteo Malucelli. During these first bars of the 1,000 kilometres of the Paul Ricard, also had time for problems, such as suffering, the Nissan GT-R NISMO #22 Matthew Simmons or the Mercedes-AMG GT3 of dutchman Renger Van der Zende. For his part, the Audi R8 LMS #28, Antonio Garcia coming in tenth with Will Stevens at the wheel.

The first hour of the race allowed to live situations of all kinds. The Porsche 911 GT3 R #77 of Attempo Racing left burning, leading to a regime of ‘Full Course Yellow’ that allowed all the teams to pass through the pits to get fuel. This meant that the Bentley #7 and #8 make up the first two positions with Guy Smith and Maxime Soulet at the wheel. Between the GT3 with Spanish presence, the Mercedes-AMG GT3 of Miguel Toril and the Audi R8 LMS of Antonio Garcia is filtered between the first seven, while Albert Costa with problems in his Jaguar lost seven laps in the pits.


Almost without time to rest, the Bentley Continental GT3 #24 and lead to a second period of ‘FCY’ to suffer a strong impact against the barriers, which almost remained other 30 minutes of the race. Once that is repaired the protections and reemprendía the march, the teams were faced with their second stop, although in this period of movement in the pit lane the Bentley Continental #7 I had to complete a pit stop, not scheduled for a great last stop, which left him out of the fight for the race. Among the spaniards, Lucas Ordonez climbed to the GT-R NISMO #23 to take it up to the eighth position.

The third turn of pit-stops with driver change for some car pointers, coincided with the equator of the maximum time of the race and with the break-up of the engine of the Lamborghini #38 of Antonelli Motorsport. That’s not trastocaba the solid leadership of Wolfgang Reip with the Bentley #8, though behind him, Rob Bell came back to take the second position with the McLaren 650S #58. This struggle is contrasted with the problems experienced by other cars. Without going any further, while Miguel Toril is up to the Mercedes-AMG GT3 #56 in the absence of two hours, the Ferrari 488 GT3 #49 was stopped in track when he was leading the AM Cup.

With night closed in Paul Ricard, we entered the final straight of the race, which started with surprise. The Mercedes-AMG GT3 #84 of Buhk, Jaafar and Baumann was standing on the track, which left it out of the game to the leaders of the Endurance Cup and the overall standings of the Blancpain GT Series. Oblivious to these problems, the Bentley Continental GT3 #8 with Andy Soucek at the wheel came, leading to the last hour, leadership that however traveled in the pits when under ‘FYC’ went to the pits, where it was produced a fire starts in the Bentley. This mishap in the pit lane was the lead of the race at the McLaren 650S GT3 #58 Garage 59.


This leadership was maintained until the end of the 6 hours and although the race did not reach the magic figure of 1,000 miles, the McLaren 650S GT3 #58 of Van Gisbergen, Ledogar, and Bell was taken up with the victory. The podium at Paul Ricard was completed by the Ferrari 488 GT3 #50 AF Corse and the Audi R8 LMS #3 piloted by Filipe Albuquerque, Jan Magnussen and Rodrigo Baptista. Despite the problems in the pits, Andy Soucek took the Bentley Continental GT3 #8 to the fourth position, staying just ahead of the Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 #23 Lucas Ordoñez.

Continuing with the good performance of the GT with Spanish presence, the Audi R8 LMS #28, René Rast, Will Stevens and Antonio Garcia managed to reach the seventh position, just ahead of the Ferrari 488 GT3 #11 Kessel, winner in the Pro-Am Cup. Seventh in this category and nineteen in the race ended the Mercedes-AMG GT3 #56 Miguel Toril. While Kessel also took the victory in the AM Cup thanks to the Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 #111, the team Albert Costa couldn’t finish the race in terms of classification.

Classification 1,000 km Paul Ricard Blancpain GT Series

Position Pilots Car Time
1 Van Gisbergen / Ledogar / Bell McLaren 650S GT3 Garare 59 165 laps
2nd Lathouras / Pier Guidi / Rugolo Ferrari 488 GT3 AF Corse +3.376
3rd Baptista / Magnussen / Alburquerque Audi R8 LMS Team WRT +1:38.158
4th Soucek / Reip / Soulet Bentley Continental GT3 Bentley M-Sport +1:49.355
5th Ordonez / Takaboshi / Buncombe Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 Nissan GT +1 Lap
6th Guilvert / Parisy / Haase Audi R8 LMS Sainteloc Racing +1 Lap
7th Stevens / Garcia / Rast Audi R8 LMS Team WRT +1 Lap
8th Broniszewski / Bonacini / Rizzoli Ferrari 488 GT3 Kessel Racing +1 Lap
9th Rizzo / Cameron / Griffin Ferrari 488 GT3 AF Corse +1 Lap
10th Babini / Niederhauser / Zampieri
Lamborghini Hurricane GT3 Attempto Racing +2 Lap