The champions crowned in golden autumn weather


At the 46th NIMEX DMV 4h Race, the season finale of the Nürburgring Endurance Series, all open decisions were made in golden autumn weather: Daniel Zils, Oskar Sandberg and Sindre Setsaas were crowned champions at the season finale on the Nürburgring Nordschleife. For their team Adrenalin Motorsport Team Alzner Automotive around team boss Matthias Unger, it is already the fifth title since 2018. With the third victory in a row, Jakub "Kuba" Giermaziak and Kim Luis Schramm secured Scherer Sport Team Phoenix first place in the prestigious NLS Speed Trophy.

After 4:00:21.803 hours, Giermaziak and Schramm in the Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO II were flagged off as winners. Vincent Kolb and Frank Stippler in the sister car finished second, 1:34.847 minutes behind. The fact that the two Audi duos were able to celebrate in this constellation for the third time in a row was also due to a technical problem with Walkenhorst Motorsport's BMW M4 GT3. Around an hour before the end of the race, Christian Krognes pitted for the last scheduled stop while leading the race. Due to problems with the BMW M4 GT3's fuel system, it was not possible to refill the planned amount of fuel and the stop lasted more than a minute longer than scheduled. To make matters worse, the Norwegian had to come into the pits for another fuel stop. "This has never happened to us before and we still have no idea what the problem was," Krognes explained. "Until then our car was running well and we were clearly on course to win." A small consolation: Krognes set a new lap record in the race in 7:49.578 minutes.
"The race was tricky. I lost a few positions in the early stages and then had to make up ground over the distance," said Giermaziak. "In terms of pace, we were on the same level as Stippi in the sister car and the guys in the Walkenhorst BMW. Due to different strategies, we were 'adjusted' to first place in the middle of the race before the BMW suddenly became really fast. In the end, the race went in our favour. To score another one-two for Scherer Sport Team Phoenix is fantastic." Kolb drew a positive conclusion to the season: "We had a fantastic season, with no retirements or technical problems. We finished on the podium six times in eight races. That's mega! We can go into the winter break with a good feeling."

Victory in the Pro-Am classification of the SP9 class went to Jörg Müller, Mario von Bohlen and Anders Buchardt. The Am triumph was secured by Henry Walkenhorst, Friedrich von Bohlen and Alexander Prinz.

AVIA W&S Motorsport takes the title in PETN Cup 2
Daniel Blickle is champion of the drivers' classification in the Cup 2 class of the Porsche Endurance Trophy Nürburgring. Together with David Jahn, the 44-year-old took fifth place overall and the third class win at the finale. The AVIA W&S Motorsport driver thus prevailed over Karsten Krämer and Christopher Brück of KKrämer Racing, who finished second in the race and in the championship.
The champions of the Cup 3 class had already been decided before the final. Mauro Calamia, Ivan Jacoma and Kai Riemer took the fourth win of the season for Schmickler-Performance. Jacoma and Riemer won the PAGID Racing trophy for Gentlemen drivers.

The new champions have petrol in their blood
The car mania of Daniel Zils, Oskar Sandberg and Sindre Setsaas is not only evident on the race track - the three of them are also involved with cars off the track. Zils runs a vehicle wholesale business in Bendorf near Koblenz. Sandberg, as a McLaren technician, is deeply rooted in the field. The trained racing mechanic is employed by the Dörr Group in Frankfurt am Main. The head of the group is Rainer Dörr, Germany's most diverse sports car dealer and a long-time participant in the NLS. Finally, Setsaas is a driving instructor in his home town of Stjørdal, a municipality not far from Trondheim in Norway.

"It doesn't really matter which race car you are in. The most important thing is that you win in the end. That's just a great feeling," says Setsaas. The 24-year-old Norwegian has been racing in the Nürburgring Endurance Series since 2018 and has scored ten class victories so far. His compatriot Sandberg can now look back on 21 successes. In 2014, the 30-year-old made his debut in the V4 class with a BMW 325i. The first vehicle Zils drove for his debut in the NLS in 2000 was one size smaller: a VW Polo. The 44-year-old has 82 class victories to his name. This puts Zils in eighth place in the eternal class-winner statistics of the Nordschleife championship and he is the pursuer of Nordschleife greats such as Heinz-Otto Fritzsche, Jürgen Nett, Peter Haas, Andreas and Ralf Schall, Johannes Scheid and Volker Strycek.

Since completing his first race in 2009 alongside the current team boss Matthias Unger, he has remained loyal to the racing team from Heusenstamm - and extremely successfully. In 2017 and 2018 he finished second in the championship, and in 2021 he came third. "Actually, now would be exactly the right time to hang up the helmet," says Zils. "By winning the championship, I have fulfilled a big and long-cherished dream. But then I would be sitting in front of the livestream next year and it would be tingling again. All joking aside. I'm excited to see what Matthias Unger has planned for 2023." It almost goes without saying that Zils continues to count on Adrenalin Motorsport Team Alzner Automotive.

Sandberg is one of the most successful Nordschleife drivers ever in 2022. "This was definitely my best year in motorsport," says Sandberg. "I took the class win at the TotalEnergies 24h Nürburgring, celebrated the title in the RCN performance test a fortnight ago and now the championship in the NLS - you can't get more than that. The NLS title is of course the most important."

Not only for the champions, but also for the other successful drivers of the Nürburgring Endurance Series, one date is marked very thickly in the calendar: 26 November. That's when the big 'Night of Champions' takes place at the Nürburgring and trophies and prize money are presented.

One week later, the NLS will present itself at the Essen Motor Show. The Nordschleife Championship will be represented at the Nürburgring stand in Hall 3 from 3 to 11 December (preview day on 2 December).