The battle for the Fanatec GT World Challenge Powered by AWS manufacturers' title moved up a gear last weekend when Lamborghini slashed Mercedes-AMG's advantage at the top of the global standings.
The Italian marque's representatives were on excellent form in the six-hour race at Circuit Paul Ricard, which represented the third round of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS campaign. Despite not taking a class win, Lamborghini was the best scorer at the French track and is closer than ever to the championship lead.
Orange1 FFF Racing earned overall pole and led the bulk of the event before ultimately finishing third among the Pro runners. The sister FFF car was runner-up in the Pro-Am class, while Emil Frey Racing bagged second in the Silver Cup. This excellent showing across the classes gave Lamborghini 1,584 points for the event, considerably more than its closest rival Mercedes-AMG.
Though its advantage has been cut the German marque was still the second-best scorer at Circuit Paul Ricard, taking maximum points in the Silver Cup thanks to class winner AKKA ASP. But despite looking dominant in free practice the brand could only manage sixth among the Pro runners – again, courtesy of AKKA ASP – while its highest Pro-Am finisher was RAM Racing in fourth.
Ferrari scored strongly, particularly in Pro-Am where Sky Tempesta Racing took the class win. Iron Lynx was classified fourth in the Pro category, but there was disappointment for Silver Cup squad Rinaldi Racing after the German outfit was eliminated by an opening-lap accident.
Audi Sport was close behind Ferrari in the scoring stakes thanks to good showings from its Pro and Silver Cup reprsentsatrives. Team WRT finished as runner-up in the former, while Attempto Racing came within a whisker of taking the final Silver podium spot.
Porsche celebrated another Pro victory thanks to GPX Racing, while Allied-Racing earned its first points by taking 10th in Pro-Am. BMW showed well thanks to Pro squad Walkenhorst Motorsport, while Pro-Am outfit Boutsen Ginion Racing also bagged solid points. McLaren endured the most difficult weekend among the Fanatec GT World Challenge Powered by AWS contenders, with a ninth-place finish for Inception Racing providing the British marque's only points of the weekend.
Lamborghini is now just 135 points shy of Mercedes-AMG in what appears to be a two-horse race for the title. Audi Sport has built a healthy gap over Porsche in the battle for the final step on the championship podium, while Ferrari remains in touch with the German brands. McLaren is sixth in the standings, though seventh-place BMW made up ground at Circuit Paul Ricard.
The battle for the global title continues this weekend when Fanatec GT World Challenge America Powered by AWS tackles its latest event at Virginia International Raceway (4-6 June).