The Young Driver Aston Martin squad scored a decisive one-two finish in the GT1 World Championship qualifying race at Beijing's Goldenport track on Saturday morning, with Alex Muller and Tomas Enge heading home the sister car of Darren Turner/Stefan Mucke in heavy rain.
The decisive moment of the race came during the mandatory pit stop cycle, when Mucke stalled in the pits as he attempted to rejoin, handing a huge lead to Enge.
The pole-sitting Marc VDS Ford GT of Bertrand Baguette had led in the early laps before skating off the circuit in the soaking-wet conditions, which handed the lead to Turner, and brought out the safety car.
Another huge moment during the pit stops occurred when the title-contending All-Inkl Lamborghini of Markus Winkelhock and Marc Basseng was handed a drive-through penalty for an infringement, forcing it to relinquish second place, dropping it to 12th. The duo's title rival, the points-leading JRM Nissan of Michael Krumm/Lucas Luhr, surged through to finish fourth from 16th on the grid after a great opening stint from Krumm. It was the only non-Aston in the top five.
The Hexis duo of Christian Hohenadel/Andrea Piccini made it three Astons on the podium, with the sister car of Clivio Piccione/Stef Dusseldorp recovering from its lowly starting position to finish fifth.
The race finished under a safety car, after Ho-Pin Tung spun off in his Exim Bank Chevrolet Corvette.
Results - 46 laps:
Pos Drivers Team/Car Time/Gap
1. Enge/Muller Young Driver Aston 1h01m41.408s
2. Mucke/Turner Young Driver Aston + 1.089s
3. Hohenadel/Piccini Hexis Aston + 1.673s
4. Luhr/Krumm JRM Nissan + 2.177s
5. Dusseldorp/Piccione Hexis Aston + 2.859s
6. Hirschi/Nygaard Belgian Ford + 3.166s
7. Westbrook/Dumbreck JRM Nissan + 4.455s
8. Rossi/Verdonck Exim Corvette + 4.974s
9. Schwager/Pastorelli All-Inkl Lamborghini + 5.931s
10. Catsburg/Bernoldi Sumo Power Nissan + 6.401s
11. Campbell-Walter/Brabham Sumo Power Nissan + 7.188s
12. Basseng/Winkelhock All-Inkl Lamborghini + 7.531s
13. Lauck/Leuenberger DKR Lamborghini + 8.833s
Tung/den Boer Exim Corvette 39 laps
Hennerici/Leinders Marc VDS Ford 15 laps
Martin/Baguette Marc VDS Ford 3 laps
Kennard/Bruck DKR Lamborghini 0 laps
Leclerc/Clairay Belgian Ford 0 laps