- Great final result thanks to the sensational performance of all drivers
- Hubert Trunkenpolz, Sehdi Sarmini, Gerald Kiska and Artur Chwist take P13
- Reini Kofler, Laura Kraihamer, Naomi Schiff, Eike Angermayr & Klaus Angerhofer at P9
- The #116 True Racing car fights for the SPX-class win right to the end
Great racing by True Racing and Reiter Engineering: Both KTM X-BOW GT4 cars were on the start of the traditional 24-Hour Race of Barcelona with entirely standard engines – and from the first moment delivered absolutely sensational, and above all problem-free performances. In keeping with the flawless technology, all nine drivers drove without any errors, and not even a single spin out spoiled what turned out to be a faultless weekend.
The practice on Thursday was followed on Friday morning by qualifying and the subsequent night training, but these sessions already indicated that it might be a very good weekend for the True Racing Team, Reiter Engineering, and KTM. Both KTM X-BOW GT4s ran like clockwork, the times were very promising and resulted in the grid positions 17 and 26. And while it rained on Thursday and Friday, the weather stayed dry for the entire 24-hour race distance – which was almost a shame, because the two KTM cars would have been even faster in wet conditions. By contrast, the drivers were likelier happier to have a dry race because when it was all over, the strain of the race against the clock was written on their faces.
The semi-pro team with Reinhard Kofler, Laura Kraihamer, Naomi Schiff, Eike Angermayr and Klaus Angerhofer was fast right from the beginning, so was the gentlemen’s lineup made up of Hubert Trunkenpolz, Gerald Kiska, Sehdi Sarmini and Artur Chwist. And so it transpired that after just a few hours, both of the KTM X-BOW GT4s were placed in the top 15. What followed was an impressive charge through the field, by which there were virtually no problems. A few hours before the finish it was already clear that the car with the #116 might be in the overall top ten, and the second car would not be far behind, and even place in the top 15.
There was much celebration when the cars crossed the finish line on Sunday at 12:00 noon to achieve a fantastic 9th and 13th place in the overall standings, and second and third place in the SPX Class. Kofler/Kraihamer/Schiff/Angermayr/Angerhofer even finished just behind the strongest car in the entire field, the Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo! For KTM and Reiter Engineering this represented a great promise for the future regarding long-distance racing and the suitability of the KTM X-BOW for this kind of competition.
Reiter Engineering team boss Hans Reiter: “This was one of the hottest long distance races of my career, and I’ve been doing them since 1990. We could hardly believe it when we realized about six hours into the race that it was no coincidence that we were close to the Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo, and that we could actually be competitive with it. We tried every trick, and every tactical possibility to overtake the Leipert Motorsport Huracan in the remaining 18 hours. We were almost there so many times, but those boys were always able to react – it was fantastic. Congratulations to Leipert, they deserved to win. Congratulations to all my boys and all our drivers, who delivered a faultless race, even though I really piled on the pressure this time.”
KTM CSO Hubert Trunkenpolz: “What a weekend, a huge compliment to Reiter Engineering for the perfect preparation of the cars, and also to my driver colleagues, who were absolutely faultless, and very fast throughout the race. This was long distance racing at its best, and we almost beat the most powerful car in the field, unbelievable. This also gives us even more motivation for the next races, which for sure with follow soon.”
KTM factory driver Reinhard Kofler: “Super start, super race, many stints, and many over-taking maneuvers. The long night stints were particularly awesome because we made such great progress. I’m extremely satisfied with my performance, and with what was by far the fastest lap in the KTM X-BOW GT4. A huge thanks to the whole team, and to my team colleagues, this time we managed to achieve everything we set out to do, and it was certainly the highlight of the season so far!”
KTM factory driver Laura Kraihamer: “That was my second 24-hour race after the one at Nürburgring, and it was no less exciting, even though the challenges are naturally quite different to what you face on a normal track. But it’s almost the same for your nerves and condition. I’m very satisfied with my stints, but above all, I’m very happy with what the team achieved. It was great that we were able to demonstrate the performance of the KTM X-BOW GT4 in such an impressive way. Thanks go to Hans Reiter, and to all the mechanics, engineers and helpers that took part.”
KTM Chief Designer Gerald Kiska: “We had less performance, but we were faster. That sounds strange, but it was the key to our success. For me, this result means that all good things come in threes. After the Red Bull Ring and Navarra, I’m finally on the podium of a long distance race. It can go on just like this, and I’m sure I’ll start again in the KTM X-BOW GT4 in a 12- or 24-hour race in the foreseeable future.”
Klaus Angerhofer: “It was fantastic to be with this team and this car in Barcelona, and to finish on the podium. Above all, I want to highlight what Reini Kofler and Eike Angermayr achieved. They managed to create the basis for our success during the night. But it’s also important to underline the special team performance, the boys and girls all fought tirelessly to achieve this podium place. It’s almost unbelievable that we managed to fight for victory in the SPX class right to the end, and against the most powerful car in the field. It won’t be long before we’re on the top of the podium.”
Eike Angermayr: “That was my first 24-hour race, and it was an exceptional experience. You can't really compare this atmosphere with anything – how the team grows together when all five drivers have the same goal. That was a really great experience. Respect that the cars got through the 24 hours without any problems, they drove perfectly, were prepared in the best possible way, and they kept the pace over the whole two-hour stint. I want to do this again, and as soon as possible!”
Reiter Engineering driver Naomi Schiff: “In a few words – that was so cool!” But seriously, it was an unbelievable race. It was a perfect team effort, and because of that, we were able to show what our KTM X-BOW GT4 can do. It’s not just a car for sprint racing, but also over the long distance. We didn’t have a single problem, and that, along with the good performance of the drivers, was the key to our success in Barcelona!“
Sehdi Sarmini: “Quite simply, get in the car and hit the gas, just like in any race. No, but seriously: The cars were perfectly prepared and set up, and considering this, it was not so difficult for us drivers – only extremely exhausting. You have to have experienced it yourself, a race like that is unbelievably intense and very, very tiring. The nights are long but also fantastic. It’s a completely different kind of motor racing. But when you’ve done it once, you’ll want to do it again and again, I’m sure about that now. At this point a compliment to the entire team of mechanics and the Reiter Engineering engineers. Everything worked from the first moment.”
Artur Chwist: "My first 24-hour race was an unbelievable experience. It was a great honor for me to have the opportunity to take part in such a race. It's something completely different to a ‘normal' race because you have the responsibility for your fellow drivers and the entire team. I hope Hubert wants me back in the team soon, that was certainly not my last long-distance race.”
For media questions:
Marketing & PR
+43 664 19 29 939