Jordan Pepper delivers despite a difficult weekend in the ADAC GT Masters
South Africa’s Jordan Pepper endured an encouraging first outing sharing his Bentley with series Gentleman’s champion Andreas Weishaupt in the German ADAC GT Masters series opener at Oschersleben Sunday. Th duo came away in the Trophy class championship lead after netting a second and a third in class in the two races.
Overall, Pepper fought back to finish 16th overall in Saturday’s opening race after taking his Blue Label Bentley Continental GT3 over from his teammate in 29th position. Jordan then started Sunday’s second race in ninth and handed the car it over in 7th.
“I’m happy with our weekend — that’s for sure,” Jordan explained. “I took the car over in 29th in the first race and pushed hard to catch up, making two places before the safety car came out. “Then I drove hard again and managed to make it up to 16th thanks also to a few drive throughs and crashes around me, but I think I made 6 overtakes so that was good.”
“My Bentley’s Pace seemed good but tomorrow is a new day,” Jordan promised Saturday evening. “Let’s wait and see — going to be full attack!”
And full attack is exactly what Jordan mounted in Sunday’s second race, starting ninth and passing for 8th early on before coming up on Edward Sandström, whose recalcitrant Audi was holding Pepper up and causing the closing pack to close in. Then Sandström went wide on one of Oscherslieben’s long curves on the fifth lap and Pepper took the gap only for the Audi to slam the door closed and bounce off the Bentley to smash into the armco to bring out the safety car.
The upshot was that Pepper found himself in seventh and unaffected by the impact as he chased hard through to the pitstop, where he handed the car over to Weishaupt. The German initially dropped to 24th, but made his way up to 18th by the finish. In spite of that skirmish, Jordan was delighted with his performance. “That was a hard race,” Pepper explained. “I had a good start and moved up to 8th early and then 7th. Then I just put my head down and chased to the stop to hand Andreas the car from sixth position.
I think we can be really happy with our car – I was the leading Bentley in my stint and that’s a cool feather in my cap, so overall I’m really happy with my weekends performance,” We were competitive in qualifying — we just need a bit of luck to get optimal results in the races too, but I think we have a really good team — all the Boys from Bentley and Abt are working really hard and we will fight back at Sachsenring as a team.
“May I also just say a massive thank you to everyone who has made this possible,” Jordan concluded “That’s job done — now it’s heads down to prepare for the next race — bring it on!”
The ADAC GT Masters now heads for Sachsenring for round 2 in two weeks over the weekend of 1 May.
IMAGE: Jordan Pepper showed his pace for Bentley at Oscehrsleben’s ADAC GT Masters season opener 16-17 April