Victory for Lidsey in Germany
Victory for Lidsey in Germany

Brett Lidsey celebrated the perfect conclusion to the 2021 Nurburgring Endurance Series after an outstanding team performance in the season finale on Saturday, helped to deliver a sensational maiden VT2 class race victory.

In only his second full race in VT2 at the wheel of Sorg Rennsport’s BMW 330i, 30-year-old Lidsey was once again in terrific form as he and team-mates Moran Gott and Emir Asari converted the class pole position into a fabulous win – their second podium in as many outings.

The final three laps of the race around the 24-kilometre Nurburgring-Nordschleife were incredibly nail-biting, with nothing to separate the No.487 Sorg BMW, with Gott at the wheel, and the similar No.485 car driven by Christian Konnerth. In the end, Gott took the flag just 0.2 seconds clear.

“Moran did a great job putting us P1 in quali, we only had 45 minutes to get a lap and because of damp and fog the track was wet – even though it looked dry – which meant there were a lot of crashes and Code 60 slow zones”, explained Lift Out, Dornack, GPL Projects Ltd and Certus Security backed Lidsey, “Obviously, taking our first win is fantastic and a great end to a challenging season.”

Early morning October fog delayed the start of qualifying on Saturday but when the session did get underway there was huge cheer for the Sorg Rennsport trio, Gott securing their maiden VT2 pole position with a fantastic lap of 9m42.673 seconds – exactly 10 seconds faster than his closest rival.

Due to the delays to the timetable the race itself didn’t get underway until more than 90 minutes later than scheduled, and the duration was reduced from the expected four hours to three hours and 15 minutes.

Gott took the opening stint and led away from the VT2 pole, a great battle raging from the outset with the top six in class all very close. By the start of lap three he had managed to open a lead of around five seconds and when Philipp Stahlschmidt pitted the No.481 BMW on lap five Gott pulled further and further clear of the competition. By the end of the sixth tour he was 40 seconds ahead.

Eventually making his pit-stop at the end of lap seven, with around two hours to go, Gott was due to hand over the BMW to Asari but the team made a late decision for Lidsey to run instead. He was third when the order settled, some 80 seconds shy of the next car after losing time in the pits, but he reeled off some excellent laps and re-took second in VT2 on lap 10.

When the No.481 car pitted from first place soon after, Lidsey swept through into the lead once again and into lap 12 he had an advantage of around 15 seconds. Running an alternative strategy to their rivals, the Sorg squad opted to pit again at the end of the tour and Asari got behind the wheel.

Only running a short stint, the Turkish racer was second in class before he headed back to the pits with around one hour to go – Gott returning to the driving seat for the run to the flag. Emerging in fourth place, on lap 16 he was back into the podium placings and as more pit-stops for rival entries took place Gott moved into the lead once more.

With half an hour to go the London-based Israeli had a huge battle on his hands with the No.485 BMW of Konnerth right with him and into lap 18 there was nothing to split them as the pair ran almost as one over the final three laps.

It made for an absolute grandstand finish around the Nordschleife, Gott soaking up the pressure superbly and managing to hold on and take the famous victory by a mere 0.2 seconds. He also took away the fastest lap of the race in VT2, a time of 9m19.442 seconds. 

“Moran got a good start and managed to gap the rest of the field using the traffic to his advantage”, reflected Lidsey, “Initially, Emir was due in the car at the first pit-stop but the team made a very late call to put me in for the second stint. Due to the lateness of the decision we did lose some time in the changeover, so I had to push really hard to try and keep us in contention. 

“The team then decided to pit me early while there were three different Code 60s in play. Emir jumped in the car and did a lap communicating with us where the crashes were, then the team made a call to pit him early for our final stop – refuelling and putting Moran back in the car. This let us make up the lost time and was decisive in us being able to take the VT2 win. What a finish!”