Narrow win for Maserati in GT1

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The Independent Online

The Vitaphone Maserati No.1 of Andrea Bertolini and Michael Bartels won the GT1 Championship Race after a nail-biting finish in Portimao.

The Maserati held off the challenge of Richard Westbrook and Thomas Mutsch in the Matech Competition Ford GT No.5.

Westbrook produced a stunning drive to close a gap of over nine seconds to the Maserati with Bartels at the wheel after the driver change. "In my stint I didnt really know what was going on to start with," said Westbrook afterwards, "I didn't plug my radio in as I didnt seem to find the time to do it. So I just thought we'll just throw caution to the wind. I just thought sod it. Then I could see Michael, I didn't know how long to go, but if the race was a little bit longer then it could have been different."

At the finish Bartels was able to hold Westbrook at bay by just 1.4 seconds in a gripping climax to the one-hour race.

Third place went to the Phoenix Crovette No.13 of Marc Hennerici and Alex Margaritas.

The pole-sitters, Michael Krumm and Peter Dumbreck in the Sumo Power Nissan GT-R No.23 finished fourth.