ADAC GT Masters: Corvette beats Camaro in 'battle of the muscle cars'

Daniel Keilwitz and Andreas Wirth partnership records first winMathias Lauda finishes in Top Ten on ADAC GT Masters debutCorvette man Remo Lips claims second winner's trophy in Gentlemen stakes

Reigning ADAC GT Masters champion Daniel Keilwitz (24, Germany) underscored his determination to hold on to the title in an impressive display at the Slovakia Ring near Bratislava. Keilwitz and co-driver Andreas Wirth (29, Germany) in a Callaway Competition Corvette claimed victory at the longest and fastest venue on the ADAC GT Masters calendar. Albert von Thurn und Taxis (29, Germany) and Czech partner Tomas Enge (37) finished as runners-up in the monster-engined Chevrolet Camaro entered by Reiter Engineering. After winning Race 1 on Saturday, Claudia Hürtgen (42, Germany) and her Austrian co-driver Dominik Baumann (21) secured the remaining podium spot in their PIXUM Team Schubert BMW Z4, a result that was enough to take them to the top of the championship standings. "A perfect race for us," said a jubilant Keilwitz who now moves up to fourth in the table. "That was enough to get me back into the title chase." Key facts, Slovakia Ring, Orechová Potôn, Slovakia, Round 10 Circuit length:5,992 metresWeather:27° C, cloudyPole Position:Jens Klingmann (PIXUM Team Schubert, BMW Z4 GT3), 2:00.542 minsWinner:Andreas Wirth/Daniel Keilwitz (Callaway Competition, Corvette Z06.R GT3)Fastest lap:Daniel Keilwitz (Callaway Competition, Corvette Z06.R GT3), 2:02.331 mins (Lap 4)Corvette and Camaro win battle off the line American-built sports cars immediately took charge at the Slovakia Ring as Italy's Diego Alessi (42) and Daniel Keilwitz edged their Callaway Competition Corvettes into the lead ahead of Tomas Enge's Camaro. On the second lap, Keilwitz passed Alessi, followed by Enge moving up into second place. The defending champion gradually drew further and further ahead until the mandatory pit stop half way through the race, handing the car over to co-driver Wirth with a 7.5-second lead over the Camaro. Wirth then doubled the gap to 15.6 seconds, but with 13 minutes left on the clock, this was nullified by a safety car deployment when the HTP Motorsport Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG driven by Maximilian Buhk (21, Germany) had to be towed away after a puncture. Racing resumed for the final lap, and Wirth successfully held off the Camaro of Albert von Thurn und Taxis to cross the line in first position. "A win was long overdue," said Wirth following his first race victory since 2011. "I'm partnering Daniel for the entire second half of the season, and that was a perfect way to start. It was an awesome race, I didn't take too many risks in the second stint after all Daniel's good work. You have to be careful about tyre usage over the distance in view of the very hot temperatures, but we managed that aspect very well." Keilwitz was delighted to have repeated his victory from the 2013 Slovakia Ring weekend: "I had a clear run in the first half of the race after the second lap and was able to draw away easily. It was a perfect race for us. It was close again after the safety car period, but Andreas had everything under control." BMW top standings with three race weekends remaining Baumann and Hürtgen finished the race in third place, which means that, at the end of the fifth race weekend of the season, the BMW duo have snatched the championship lead from the Prosperia C Abt pairing of René Rast (27, Germany) and South Africa's Kelvin van der Linde (18); the Audi partnership had looked to be on their way to a podium finish until Rast incurred a drive-through penalty for an offence under the yellow flag and ultimately finished in tenth place. Diego Alessi and Patrick Assenheimer (22, Germany) made it a successful day for Callaway Competition Corvette, bringing home their Corvette in fourth place to secure the team's best overall result of the season so far. Christian Engelhart (27, Germany) and Dutchman Jaap van Lagen (37) in a GW IT Racing Team Schütz Motorsport Porsche 911 GT3 R finished fifth ahead of no fewer than four Mercedes-Benz SLS AMGs: Jan Seyffarth (28, Germany) and Maro Engel (28, Germany) of ROWE Racing crossed the line in sixth, followed by Luca Ludwig (25, Germany) and Israel's Alon Day (22) of BKK MOBIL OIL Zakspeed in seventh and by eighth-placed Nico Bastian (24, Germany) and Jaime Alguersuari (24, Spain) in the second ROWE Racing Gullwing. Ex-DTM driver Mathias Lauda (33) can feel pleased with his ADAC GT Masters debut, having scored a couple of championship points. The Austrian (son of racing legend Niki Lauda) partnered Luca Stolz in an HTP Motorsport Mercedes SLS AMG to a P9 finish. Pole-setter Jens Klingmann (24, Germany) and co-driver Max Sandritter (25, Germany) did not have the happiest of times on Sunday: a drive-through penalty for ignoring yellow flag dropped the PIXUM Team Schubert BMW down the field, and on the final lap, Sandritter steered it into a gravel bed. Win for Corvette also in Gentlemen class Switzerland's Remo Lips (32) rounded off his Slovakia race weekend in style with a second victory. After Saturday's successful outing, the Callaway Competition Corvette driver, ably assisted by ADAC Sports Foundation protégé Lennart Marioneck (25, Germany), beat off the challenge from the TONINO Herberth Porsche driven by Austria's Herbert Handlos (31) and Robert Renauer (29, Germany). Nathan Wolf (45, NL) and partner Antonios Wossos (48, Greece) completed the podium party in a second Porsche 911, this one entered by GW IT Racing Team Schütz Motorsport. Results from Race 2 (Top Six) 1. Andreas Wirth/Daniel Keilwitz (Callaway Competition, Corvette Z06.R GT3), 27 laps2. Albert von Thurn und Taxis/Tomas Enge (Reiter Engineering, Chevrolet Camaro GT), +2.122 sec3. Claudia Hürtgen/Dominik Baumann (PIXUM Team Schubert, BMW Z4 GT3), +2.899 sec4. Patrick Assenheimer/Diego Alessi (Callaway Competition, Corvette Z06.R GT3), +3.799 sec5. Christian Engelhart/Jaap van Lagen (GW IT Racing Team Schütz Motorsport, Porsche 911 GT3 R), +4.421 sec6. Jan Seyffarth/Maro Engel (ROWE Racing-Mercedes, Benz SLS AMG GT3), +4.962 sec