The showdown is on: This weekend's ADAC 24h Nürburgring Qualifiers will be the final test before the ADAC TotalEnergies 24h Nürburgring, the motorsport highlight on the legendary Nordschleife, will take place from 26 to 29 May 2022. The first of three days at the 24h Qualifiers belonged to the BMWs of Rowe Racing, who set the fastest time in Qualifying 1 with car number #98.
In the final top qualifying session, their teammates in the #99 were then out in front, clocking a time of 8:08.421 mins to edge out their second-placed brand mates from the #72 BMW Junior team by 0.304 seconds. The team from St. Ingbert will thus lead the field in the first of the two three-hour races of the weekend on Saturday (start 18:30). Behind them, 90 other teams will go into this first part of the prologue, which will continue on Sunday with a separately judged second heat (start Sunday: 14:00). Tickets for day-goers are available at the Nürburgring box office, while admission is free to the open spectator areas at the Nordschleife. Those who want to follow the action from home can follow the comprehensive livestream on the Nürburgring's Youtube channel.
The joy in the Rowe team about the best time in the first top qualifying was great, but pole driver Augusto Farfus (BRA) already has the big goal in mind. "It's always great fun to drive two laps here without traffic in these good conditions. But this pole position is just a small first step for us. Our big goal is the 24h race in three weeks." After a strong performance on day one, the BMW Junior Team could also be highly satisfied. Dan Harper (GBR), who drove the M4 GT3 to row one on the grid, was beaming after the top qualifying: "I had a lot of fun. We're going really fast at the moment and it's a great pleasure to drive the new M4 GT3. It's a great car." A big exclamation mark was provided by octane126 from Switzerland. Bonn-born Luca Ludwig drove the #26 Ferrari 488 GT3 to fourth place and will share the second row of the grid with Walkenhorst Motorsport's BMW M4 GT3 in Saturday's first race.
BMW teams with a strong performance
The strong weekend for BMW had already been announced in the two qualifying sessions in the afternoon. In the first of the two two-hour sessions, Rowe Racing set the fastest time early on with the #98 BMW M4 GT3. Only a fabulous lap by their brand colleagues in the BMW Junior Team #72 prevented the Rowe team from taking a double lead. In the second qualifying session, it was the young Nico Menzel from Kelberg who pulled off a coup in the Porsche 911 GT3 R of Huber Motorsport and moved ahead of the fast Rowe BMW #98: He was one of the first to storm onto the track and thus had a completely free lap and landed in first place after 8:09.232 minutes and 25.378 km, which was not in danger until the end.
Saturday's programme already starts at 8:15 a.m., when a regularity test on the Nordschleife is scheduled. From 12:15 p.m., the teams of the 24h Qualifiers will take to the track for a warm-up. After a performance test of the RCN, the first of the two 24h Qualifiers races is on the agenda from 6:30 pm. It lasts for three hours until dusk. Fans at the Nürburgring are then invited to explore the pit lane on a pitwalk from 10pm to 11pm.