Drivetrain issue leads to early retirement in 24 Hours of Spa for Norbert Siedler


Technical DNF after less than five hours

At the 24 Hours of Spa (B) a drivetrain issue forced Norbert Siedler and his team to an early retirement. Around five hours after the start, Siedler’s team-mate Rinat Salikhov had to stop the car without drive. Until the unexpected problem, the Tyrolean was very satisfied with the race.

For the first time since October 2016, Norbert Siedler competed in a race with a Ferrari 488 GT3 in Spa-Francorchamps. At the season highlight of the Blancpain GT Series he shared the car with fellow pro-driver Matteo Malucelli (I) and the two gentleman-drivers Alexander Mattschull (D) and Rinat Salikhov (R). Therefore, the quartet’s car was entered in the Pro-Am-class.

On Saturday afternoon Norbert Siedler started from position 32 (overall) and position seven in class into the biggest GT race of the world with more than 60 participants. “In the first laps I won five positions. Afterwards it was a rather calm first stint. After a little bit more than one hour I handed the car over to Rinat in 27th position”, the 34-year-old described.

But four hours later Norbert Siedler and his team-mates suffered a huge setback: Suddenly Rinat Salikhov had no drive anymore and the car stopped beside the track. “Something inside the drivetrain failed,” Ferrari-driver Siedler analysed immediately afterwards. “The team will not have a chance to analyse the car until the end of the race, therefore we cannot be more precise right now.”

Norbert Siedler was satisfied with the course of the race until the retirement: “In the Pro-Am-class the two gentleman-drivers have to drive four hours each. After five hours nearly the half of it would have been completed. Our plan was that Matteo and I attack during the night to move up in the standings. Our speed was for sure good enough to fight for a class podium.”

At the next weekend Norbert Siedler’s journey leads to the Nürburgring. At the German track, season races number nine and ten of the ADAC GT Masters will be held. As usual the Austrian will share a Lamborghini Huracán GT3 of HB Racing with Marco Mapelli (I).