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Andrea Bertolini and Michael Bartels win the championship race in Portimao
Championship leaders Andrea Bertolini and Michael Bartels have extended their FIA GT1 Championship lead with victory in the Portimao Championship race.
The pair took the lead following the mandatory pitstops after Bertolini held second place through the first half of the race, with Bartels then forced to defend from a charging Richard Westbrook through the final stages of the race.
Westbrook had been ten seconds behind the Maserati at one point but was only 1.402secs adrift at the finish.
"Of course when you're leading by 8-9-10 seconds, it's a harder race than when you're fully under pressure, because you lose concentration, you think things you shouldn't think," Bartels. "I was aware of course that the Ford was coming from behind in big steps, and with really strong performance, and I think if we'd had two more laps in the race, he'd have been on my back."
For the second straight race, Marc Hennerici and Alex Margaritis secured third place at the wheel of the lone Phoenix Carsport Corvette while qualifying race winners Peter Dumbreck and Michael Krumm took fourth. The Sumo Power pair had led the race prior to the pitstops, when an issue with the wheel gun cost them valuable time.
Bas Leinders and Maxine Martin were fifth for the Marc VDS Racing team while the top six was completed by the leading Aston Martin in the hands of Yann Clairay and Fredoric Makowiecki.