In exactly one month, the start of the new season will be given as part of the Zolderse New Race Festival, but some of the participants in the Porsche Sprint Trophy Benelux already went to the Limburg circuit for the official Test Day. John de Wilde turned out to be the fastest in the Cup Division, while Alex Goddijn was at the top of the Clubsport Division.
“As many as 19 cars from the Benelux Racing Series came into action, so we already got a very good first impression of what the peloton will look like this year,” said a satisfied Olivier Aerts, Series Manager of the Porsche Sprint Trophy Benelux. “It is becoming increasingly clear that the new Porsche Sprint Trophy Benelux is generating a lot of interest, especially among gentlemen drivers and rookies of all ages, including young people who want to take their first steps in motorsport. Judging by the riders who were present in Zolder on Thursday, we get a very nice mix this year. ”
The fastest time, 1'31'908, was set by John de Wilde. With his Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (Type 991 Gen. II) he stayed in the Cup Division just ahead of newcomer Niels Troost (Team GP Elite). “I am very satisfied with what we have been able to show today,” said the 50-year-old Belgian. De Wilde will undoubtedly be one of the favorites for the new season, although he will undoubtedly have to deal with Gilles Smits, who recorded an excellent Porsche debut last year, Jos Janssen and the duo Wim Meulders-Rik Renmans to be feared. "The six fastest times today were very close together," continues de Wilde. “That promises a nice battle with the other gentlemen drivers. Of course I am happy to have set the fastest time, but I am especially eager to be able to start the first race of the season in a month's time. ”
Although the Speedlover rider mainly talks about the other gentlemen drivers, some rookies also need to be kept an eye out for. For example, there is the barely 19-year-old Lucas van Eijndhoven. “So far I have only participated in Track Days, so this year I will be making my big debut in motorsport,” smiles the Dutchman, who is determined to follow in the footsteps of his older brother Huub. “I can gain a lot of experience driving the 911 GT3 Cup through the Porsche Sprint Trophy Benelux, because we have a lot of track time at our disposal in the best possible conditions. I have zero racing experience, but I still hope that I can compete with more experienced riders and get closer to a podium step by step. My dream is of course to be able to drive together with my brother Huub in the Porsche Carrera Cup Benelux one day. ”
In the "Clubsport Division", where Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport compete, we recorded the excellent time of Alex Goddijn (Team GP Elite). He used his experience gained in 2020 to complete the four-kilometer circuit in 1'37'460. The Dutchman turned out to be faster than the three drivers of RedAnt Racing: Sven Van Laere, Davy Vandekerckhove and Marc Geentjens.
Under the approving gaze of dad Pierre-Yves, himself a driver with a lot of international motorsport experience, Benjamin Pâque made his debut at the wheel of a Cayman GT4. “I have had my license for two weeks,” says the 16-year-old from Liège, author of a promising 1'39'780. “I've been driving karting for several years now, but it's only the second time I've gotten out of the Speedlover workshops behind the wheel of this GT4. It's a great car to gain experience, and I hope to be able to compete for the podium this season.”
Before the championship starts, on May 8 and 9 during the New Race Festival in Zolder, a lot of news is expected. “The starting field for the Porsche Sprint Trophy Benelux will look very attractive,” laughs Olivier Aerts. “We are more convinced than ever that we have some great assets: the pyramid - consisting of our Track Days, the Porsche Sprint Trophy Benelux and the Porsche Carrera Cup Benelux - gives everyone the opportunity to take action at the level that suits him or her best. And that can only be called a good thing for everyone who is part of the Porsche Family. ”