Blancpain at Zandvoort: report, gallery and aftermovie.
On the weekend of the 12th to 14th of July (2019), the Blancpain travelling circus hit Zandvoort. Since I’ve been heavily investing my time in Assetto Corsa Competizione (which features the official Blancpain licensed cars) I thought it would be nice to visit a real race for once.
I’ve visited Zandvoort once before, but I had never watched a race, never felt the roar of the engines pass through my stomach. All that changed on sunday the 14th of July. See/read below for my experiences!
Together with a colleague I went, dressed in my 488GT3 shirt, early enough to catch the start of the Lamborghini Supertrofeo at 10. Shortly after entering the track’s perimeter, we decided to take position between Hunzerug and Hans Gerlach corner.
The first passage of the cars was thrilling, though we soon discovered following the race and determining which driver was in what car was near impossible. I also found out that taking pictures of the cars was hard.
Also, getting the cars (when you finally capture them) in focus was another challenge;
In the end, I did manage to get some good looking pictures;
We decided to do a little trackwalk while the race was still ongoing. We stumbled upon the GT4 cars waiting for the Lamborghini race to finish…
GT4 European Series
The GT4’s started with a bang. Literally. If you’ve seen the video above, you might’ve caught a glimpse of the action as I, myself, totally missed it. Here’s is the full broadcast starting from the starting crash. I always thought it would be easy to hear crashes like this, but it was entirely drowned out by the sound of the engines.
The first sign I noticed of something going awry was a Porsche limping on the straight, long after the rest of the field had passed.
Looking back, I saw some of the other carnage.
Apparently, there were about six cars involved. I totally missed the Mercedes’ involvement, but I did manage to snipe a close up while walking to the main seating area during the red flag…
While walking through the paddock, I encountered a familiar face.
Yes, that’s Rinaldi Racing’s David Perel, known from his Youtube channel famous for his onboard videos explaining what is going through a driver’s mind while racing in GT3 cars. Also some GT Sport videos but hey we don’t care about those here…
We watched a bit of the rest of the GT4’s (those BMW’s are some noisy fuckers) but mainly we started getting drunk on our beers and empty stomachs. Beer prices were €3 for a plastic cup, even though they were listed €2,50 (“those are old prices which need to be updated”, yeah right).
Blancpain GT World Series
Time for the main course, and the program agreed with us as the beastly GT3 cars rolled up on the grid, right in front of us.
These were the guys I saw in my videogames, whose cars I selected to go flat out through Radillion (and crash because I hit the right curb). Oh, and somehow I decided to become a bit stalker-ish for this Perel guy.
The start of the race was very clean, I think. There was one grey/blue Audi which sped off immediately only to be seen again at the finish line. Perel had a good start and was running around in 7th or thereabouts
The next time I started taking photographs again was around the time the cars came in for their pitstops (how loud are those wheel guns IRL!), after which I decided to stalk Perel some more;
Also apparently he won his Pro-AM race. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Anyway, after the GT3 race we decided to split. It was awesome to watch a race in person for once, and it was relatively well-priced. Still, if you are not entirely sure what’s going on, the racing can be confusing.
Also, no way in hell will a possible F1-race here be a success, racing or scheduling-wise.