The REMUS GT3 championship came home and well and truly on Tuesday evening as Teams Shmee150 and Malmedie arrived at the virtual Red Bull Ring on the RaceRoom Racing Experience platform.
We’ve already covered the first two rounds of this fascinating series in a bumper edition review. For those who are looking for the simple facts? Shmee150 edge the battle with Jack Keithley and Bence Bánki heading up the charge.
Florian Hasse, points leader for Malmedie, has actually accumulated the most out of any driver. He and his teammates know that it will all be for naught if blue beats green by season’s end.
It would be yet another German lining up on Race 1 pole position. Marko Pejic continued his upward form trajectory with a second major RaceRoom pole position in a month following his ADAC GT Masters finale effort. Alongside him lay a surprise as Christopher Högfeldt muscled his way into the podium conversation.
The Swede led three further Shmee150 cars; Tim Jarschel, Alexander Dornieden and the aforementioned Bánki locking out the Top 5 and leaving the Malmedie pole sitter very isolated.
Keithley would be disappointed with ninth overall, although nowhere near as underwhelmed with his performance as Hasse. Only a 14th place effort for the Dörr Esports representative.
Despite drama for Keithley who plummeted down the order, the first lap was exceptionally clean with the front runners holding status quo. Given Pejic’s unhealthy relationship with bad starts, it was all the Porsche pilot could have hoped for. In fact, affairs at the sharp end were very quiet for the opening five minutes.
Intra-team politics was bred into the DNA of the REMUS GT3 Championship and the first sign of such in Round 3 appeared between sixth-placed Leonard Krippner and the chasing Emre Cihan. The Turkish driver was evidently faster and an easy pass was eventually negotiated with three quarters of the race still to run.
Krippner’s race pace continued to lag until eventually Max Pfeifer and most recent winner Lucas Müller arrived underneath his rear wing. In allowing the pair through, the German who once sat sixth opened the door to an eager Isaac Price. The two Bentleys, stunningly, went side-by-side for half a lap before the Brit was forced to concede through the Mobile corner.
Corvettes across the field came alive in the final few minutes, including that under the command of Högfeldt. Yet it wasn’t enough to dissuade Pejic from claiming victory for Team Malmedie; a good thing too as Shmee150 rounded off the podium through Jarschel.
Guest drivers hadn’t really figured much into the grand picture of the championship thus far until Louis Delétraz found himself in pole position for the reverse grid spectacle that was Race 2. Leading a Shmee150 1-2-3 off the line, the Switz driver’s launch was miserable being gobbled up by those immediately around him.
Keithley’s twenty minutes to forget, all of a sudden, found meaning as the Brit led the race ahead of a similarly fortunate Hasse. Andre Santos, previously reverse grid winner at Spa-Francorchamps, kept early pace with the leaders as Delétraz settled into fifth. The field was back-loaded by Malmedie so for the team in green, time was of the essence to try and slice through the order.
In complete contrast to the first race, the opening five minutes were pure chaos with more spinners in that timeframe than the twenty minutes preceding it. As now fourth-placed Axel Vermeylen sped off into the distance, Delétraz continued his plummet down the order with Martin Barna and Alessandro Ottaviani quick to dispose of him.
It wasn’t over for the European Le Mans driver as he became the meat in a terrifying sandwich careering towards Rindt corner. By the end of the lap, Louis lay 10th behind Luciano Witvoet, Marc Gassner and the rapidly rising Cihan. Just corners later, 10th was but a memory.
The midfield continued to fire on full cylinders with excitement but at the front Keithley was having a comfortable evening drive. The Brit dominated Race 2 to finish five seconds ahead of his nearest competition; that being Hasse and Santos to bring home a German 2-3.
Race 1 – Top 10 Results
- Marko Pejic – Malmedie – 20:39.315
- Christopher Högfeldt – Shmee150 – +1.254
- Tim Jarschel – Shmee150 – +1.794
- Alexander Dornieden – Shmee150 – +3.536
- Bence Bánki – Shmee150 – +4.926
- Emre Cihan – Malmedie – +5.187
- Max Pfeifer – Malmedie – +6.089
- Lucas Müller – Malmedie – +7.969
- Leonard Krippner – Malmedie – +9.281
- Isaac Price – Shmee150 – +9.638
Race 2 – Top 10 Results
- Jack Keithley – Shmee150 – 20:40.005
- Florian Hasse – Malmedie – +5.500
- Andre Santos – Shmee150 – +7.735
- Axel Vermeylen – Shmee150 – +11.086
- Marc Gassner – Malmedie – +12.827
- Martin Barna – Malmedie – +13.830
- Emre Cihan – Malmedie – +16.469
- Tim Jarschel – Shmee150 – +16.998
- Petr Pliska – Malmedie – +17.314
- Christopher Högfeldt – Shmee150 – +18.498