Dubai – Heavy rain was the reason that the 24-hour race in Dubai already had to be stopped after around seven hours of racing. However, the extremely difficult conditions didn’t prevent BLACK FALCON from scoring what already was its fifth overall win. The team made the decisive move to success when it, unlike its competitors, decided, together with its driver Hubert Haupt, to stay out on slick tyres with around five hours completed, in spite of again increasing rain. As the track dried out again, Hubert Haupt was able to take the lead as he, again unlike rivals ahead of him, didn’t need an additional pit stop.
Together with Khaled Al Qubaisi (UAE), Ben Barker (GBR), Jeroen Bleekemolen (NED) and Manuel Metzger (GER), the quintet extended its lead until the interruption after around seven hours to 4m42.846s. With this victory, Al Qubaisi, Bleekemolen and Haupt managed to win the 24H Dubai for the third time already and therefore are the sole record holders in terms of outright wins in Dubai, just like BLACK FALCON as a team with five overall wins. Due to too large amounts of rain at Dubai Autodrome, it was decided not to continue the race after a long interruption. The order at the time of interruption after around seven hours was used as the classification.
In the hands of Customer Racing Teams CP Racing (#85) and SPS automotive performance (#10), the new Mercedes-AMG GT3 celebrated its official competition debut in the 24H Dubai and was able to convince right away. Having started from 13th on the grid, the driver quartet in the number #10 car with Lance David Arnold (GER), Dominik Baumann (AUT), Tom Onslow-Cole (GBR) and Valentin Pierburg (GER) quickly moved up into the top ten. The new GT3 from Affalterbach particularly showed its strengths in the rain. In these conditions, the car with starting number ten made up another three positions and finished the race in seventh place overall. The #85 CP Racing entry with Charles Espenlaub (USA), Joe Foster (USA), Mike Hedlund (USA), Shane Lewis (USA) and Charles Putman (USA) eventually finished in 15th place. The new Mercedes-AMG GT3 will have its second 24-hour race outing in a fortnight during the Rolex 24 At Daytona (22-26 January).
The Customer Racing Teams in the GT3-AM and the GT4 class also had a successful start of the 2020 season: MP Motorsport’s number 19 saw Bert de Heus, Daniel de Jong, Henk de Jong and Jaap van Lagen (all NED) claim victory in the GT3-AM class from its fellow Mercedes-AMG drivers of the Toksport WRT team (#70 Mercedes-AMG GT3) Alexander Hrachowina (AUT), Finlay Hutchinson (GBR), Axcil Jefferies (ZIM), George Kurtz (USA) and Martin Konrad (AUT) in second place. Upon its debut in the 24H Dubai and in its maiden race with the Mercedes-AMG GT4, the Atlas BX Motorsports team scored a GT4 class win. Steven Cho (CAN), Jongkyum Kim, Jaseung Park (both KOR) and Masataka Yanagida (JPN) were the drivers of the car with starting number 403. Moreover, the QSR Racing Team secured second place in the GTX class with the #754 Mercedes-AMG GT4 and drivers Olivier Bertels, Jimmy de Breucker, Johnny de Breucker, Michiel Verhaeren (all BEL) and Dimitry Gvazava (RUS).