The Fanatec GT World Cup Europe powered by AWS Sprint Cup took place this weekend with a double-header race at the French track of Magny Cours where Cumbrian driver Frank Bird suffered mixed fortunes in the Team WRT Audi R8 LMS.
Along with Japanese teammate Ryuichiro Tomita, the pair qualified in P9 for Saturday night’s race to be held in darkness with Frank doing the opening stint and circulating in the top ten for the most part.
However, at the mid-race point, 21-year-old Frank went off track and it took some time to rescue his car from the gravel trap and clean it at the pits. The incident cost the #31 team two laps, with Tomita eventually taking P24 but lapping as quick as the leaders.
The duo responded in fine style after qualifying on the ninth row of the grid for Sunday afternoon’s second race by posting a fourth-place finish in the Silver Cup class for the Belgian-based team. After a great start by Tomita, Bird charged through the field to end up in a superb tenth place overall, scoring important points in the process.
Frank Bird: “A positive weekend overall, we showed good pace in the Silver Cup class and overall, as well. In raceone in the dark, it was my mistake, but we recovered well today, and we showed good potential. Thanks to the team and our sponsors for another great weekend.”
GT World Challenge Europe Sprint Cup – Round 1
Magny-Cours, France – 7-9 May 2021
Race 1 Result
1. Vanthoor-Weerts (Audi R8 LMS)
2. Feller-Costa (Lamborghini Huracan)
3. Rougier-Fontana (Lamborghini Huracan)
4. Pérez Companc-Breukers (Mercedes AMG)
5. Boguslavskiy-Marciello (Mercedes AMG)
11. Goethe-van der Linde (Audi R8 LMS)
24. Bird-Tomita (Audi R8 LMS)
Race 2 Result
1. Stolz-Engel (Mercedes AMG)
2. Vanthoor-Weerts (Audi R8 LMS)
3. Boguslavskiy-Mariello (Mercedes AMG)
4. Wilkinson-Barnicoat (Aston Martin Vantage)
5. Tereschenko-Pla (Mercedes AMG)
10. Bird-Tomita (Audi R8 LMS)