CoRe C.Winkler & M.Paluch Secure ADAC DMSB’s SimRacing Championship Endurance Series In GT3!
The SimRacing Championship Endurance Series presented by the Deutsche Motorsport Bund & ADAC is an exciting, national team championship based on three different car classes (GT3, GT4, SP3T) which is held as a competitive multi-class simracing series on the iRacing.com simulator. In 2023, it has been running five 135 minute races visiting the racing venues from Silverstone, Sebring, Monza, Road Atlanta up to Spa as the season finale. The DMSB SimRacing Championship is the only prestigious simracing series in Germany which is held by Level 1 standards and validity of the DMSB clauses. CoRe drivers Carl Winkler and Maik Paluch registered for this series in their Mercedes AMG GT3 Evo after the DGTM 2022 appearance, while CoRe’s sister car in the GT4 category was run by Dominik Engel, Ronald Großmann and Markus Gunzelmann.
Accompanied throughout the season with tough competition from the german simracing scene such as GermanSimRacing.de, SimRacing Academy’s Garage S. Frei Yellow, KKrämer Racing eSports and PROsport x MSC Alzey GT3, it did not look to be a walk in the park for the CoRe GT3 squad who’s goal was at least a Top-3 position at the end of the season. After a short pre-season preparation from both CoRe entry teams, the series opener was held at Silverstone Grand Prix – starting the race from the top third of the grid after a solid qualifying and opening stint performance by Carl, the season began its’ journey. Maik, who took over the big second stint for the Silverstone round, was able to catch up to the front taking the lead after a battle against Garage S.Frei Yellow’s Rene Seidemann. Little bit surprised, Carl and Maik enjoyed this perfect start to the season while Dominik and Ronald finished P5 in the GT4 category.
The second race of the season was held at Sebring, which showed struggles in setup testing and adjustments for the CoRe GT3 team. With only P6 in qualifying, hopes were limited to repeat a somewhat great performance as Carl and Maik had in Silverstone. Carl took over the start and first two stints to reach the Top 3 of the GT3 field by the end of his safe drive. With GermanSimRacing.de’s Sergio Medina & Garage S.Frei Yellow’s Hans-Bodo Kohl in front, Maik jumped behind the wheel for the ending stint attempting the big chase. With gained confidence bullying their AMG over the tough kerbs at Sebring International, Maik took P2 to continue having the drive of his career – with a last lap battle against Hans-Bodo Kohl, Maik prevailed after a hairpin cutback taking the victory in a massive drive to the end. Victory two out of two was in the books. The GT4 squad, which was helped out by Markus Gunzelmann this time by finished P8 after a penalty.
With a good amount of stress relieved on Carl’s & Maik’s shoulders after winning two races in a row, both drivers were eager to attack Monza, round number three of the season. With another solid qualifying attempt by Carl, their strategy was planned to be the same as in previous rounds. Nevertheless Carl misjudged the space in Monza’s narrow turn one, spinning the car around. After losing nearly all positions after that incident, he rejoined at the back of the GT3 field. Due to common draft performance expected at Monza, it was tough to catch up back to the front. Maik, who took over the ending run of the race, only finished in a disappointed and anticlimactic 5th result for the CoRe GT3 team. Meanwhile, Ronald and Dominik also finished P5 in Monza.
The series had a drop result in place, however, it could only be a drop result of the first four events. With that rule in mind, Carl and Maik were eager to come back after that thin result at Monza. Visiting Road Atlanta with a little slap on the AMG’s finger due to balance of performance adjustments by the race directors, the GT3 squad entered the race with a good chance of a Top-3 position once again. With more or less safe driving and focused stinting by both Carl and Maik, the GT3 team finished 2nd behind a very strong GermanSimRacing’s BMW M4 GT3. The GT4 team finished in another P5 position proving their consistency. With four out of five results done, the season finale had its’ excitment as promised. With the drop results calculated, the positions have been a 1-1-2 for CoRe SimRacing GT3, a 1-1-3 for GermanSimRacing.de and a 2-2-2 for Garage S.Frei Yellow. Whoever shows the performance at the season finale at Spa would take home the championship trophy.
A good amount of practice and test stints were considered by Carl and Maik and so the final race of the season took place – but it did not take long and havoc was caused in turn one of the race. Carl was spun around after an attempt of avoidance, as well as GermanSimRacing’s Fabio Unverdruss was turned around. Every nerve was strained at Carl who got told by the spotter that the car had wheel damage, he rejoined at the back of the field, experiencing a deja-vu like in Monza – this time with a broken steering. The outlook of a maiden GT3 championship was crumbling. The final chase had begun. The car performance was not on peak, however, Carl managed to get back to the Top-5 by the end of his double stint. Maik took over once again for the deciding moment following GermanSimRacing, who were sitting in P3 close to the end of the race. With the last minutes ticking down, CoRe GT3 finished 4th after penalties with GermanSimRacing in 3rd. The GT3 championship was decided by incredible two points. CoRe’s GT4 team finished the season in P6.
“It was a rollercoaster of emotions at a rollercoaster of a track.” – said Carl after the race. “An absolute wicked race evening for us”. For Maik it was a similar emotional ride : “I did not think we’re gonna make it at the end. It looked pretty dull after that incident at turn one. My nerves just hit the bottom, Carl was pretty tense to handle. I am just happy it was enough in the end for us, absolute Kudos to him taking the championship together. Also thanks to Dominik, Markus and Ronald supporting us on track throughout the season. It is always nice to see your sister car sharing the stress. And last but not least, shoutout to the organizers for the season and to our contenders GermanSimRacing and Garage S.Frei Yellow. They really gave us the run for our money. Hands down!”