Zanardi misses the race to run a handbike marathon
Team Schubert Z4 GT3 racers Dominik Baumann and Thomas Jäger finished second in the Zandvoort Blancpain Sprint race, just 1.366 seconds behind the winning Audi R8 driven by René Rast and Enzo Ide. It was the first Blancpain Sprint Series race for BMW Sports Trophy Team Schubert, a team best known for endurance racing in the VLN Series, the 24 Hour races at the Nürburgring and Spa, and other events.
The race order was shaken up in a rainy mid-race period. The winning Audi and The Schubert BMW were chasing the Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 driven by points leader Maxi Buhk at that point; Buhk spun as the track began to dry, allowing the Audi and the Z4 to move to the front. The Mercedes finished fourth. The BMW Sports Trophy Team Brazil Z4 driven by Nelson Piquet Jr and Matheus Dall´Agnol Stumpf finished eighth.
The ROAL Motorsport Z4 driven by Stefano Colombo and David Fumanelli was a contender early in the race, but when the rain came the team switched the car to wet weather tires. When the track dried later in the race it fell back, finishing twelfth.
Alex Zanardi, who is campaigning a hand-controlled Z4 for ROAL this season, had to miss the Zandvoort race because of a long standing commitment to run a handbike in the Dolomites Marathon bike race. Using the strength of his arms, he finished the 138 km marathon in 7:52 hours, climbing 4190 meters along the route. Zanardi returns to Blancpain Sprint competition at the Slovakia Ring on August 23/24.—Brian S, Morgan