Following class wins in the Porsche 992 GT3 Cup in VLN Nürburgring Endurance Series (NLS) and the 24 Hours of the Nürburgring earlier this year, Moritz Kranz added SP9/GT3 Pro-Am victory to his win tally last weekend.
Finishing eighth overall in the 45. RCM DMV Grenzlandrennen, it was one more GT3 class win with the #9 GetSpeed Performance Mercedes-AMG GT3 alongside Janine Shoffner. The pairing had competed the SP9/GT3 Am category in 2021 – taking six wins – but with Kranz being upgraded to Silver driver status, VLN moved them up into the Pro-Am class for this year. NLS4 was their first race at the Nordschleife this season, supplementing a schedule to revolves around the International GT Open series.
The day, however, didn’t start out well. Kranz’ time in qualifying, fast enough for fifth on the grid, was void as penalty for overtaking under yellow, placing the #9 machine at the back of the grid. Within two laps Kranz was running in the top 10 and began picking off the GT3 Pro cars to pave the way for an eventual eighth-place finish overall and class victory.
“We had a problem in qualifying with a yellow flag, so we had to start last in the first starting group,” Kranz reflects on the race.
“The first stint was quite entertaining going through all the traffic, when I came to the first pit stop we were P4 overall. In the end, Janine did a very good job as well, we finished P8 overall, P1 in class.
“GetSpeed gave us such a good car, it was so much fun to drive, it was so fast, I’m really happy. It was a very good race.
“I raced the Porsche 992 Cup car in the earlier races this year [with KKrämer Racing], in the 24-hours and NLS, but getting back in a GT3 on the Nordschleife is just something else: it’s so fast, it’s so much fun, you can just push. It’s the ultimate category to race here.”
Kranz’ abilities have been well known to everyone in the paddock for years. Having won the Cayman GT4 Trophy and Cup 2 (Porsche 911 GT3 Cup) championships in NLS and taken Nürburgring 24 Hours class wins, his talent has been undeniable. So, when Janine Shoffner’s longtime co-pilot Fabian Schiller moved on to Mercedes-AMG factory racing, Kranz was an obvious choice to join her for a program that this year includes a European road trip with the International GT Open.
“I got a call last year in January, if I wanted to race with this quick lady [Janine Shoffner]. Since last year we’ve raced together and it’s basically the most fun I’ve ever had on a racetrack together with her. The results are very good as well.
“It’s obviously very limited testing for us, so many tracks we’ve never been before. With the limited drive time you have it’s a little bit tricky, but we get better and better by every single outing, every single session. So far, we’ve had a decent season, I would say. At Spa we were a bit unlucky with the safety car otherwise we would’ve been on the podium with P2 or P3. It’s going good as well.”
At the start of each NLS race last year, Moritz turned heads when he kept up with the frontrunners throughout his stint. Does that mean he is ready to jump into a full Pro GT3 car should the opportunity arise?
“I think, performance wise and everything, it shouldn’t be an issue. But I’m really enjoying my time with Janine, it’s just so much fun. Obviously, if something would come up and it wouldn’t be a clash with her programme, for sure, why not.”
With free time in short supply, Kranz has taken a step back from his Mühlner Motorsport duties, the team with which he celebrated his greatest successes so far.
“I don’t think I will do anything in the States this year. I’m very busy with GT Open, then I do some more of the NLS races in the Cup car again, and also coaching in the Porsche Sports Cup and other coaching going on, so it’s pretty busy.
“At the moment there is just no time to do anything, it’s fully booked right now. They are racing this weekend at Watkins Glen and asked if I could race, but obviously I’m busy here. We will have to see if something comes up.”
Whatever happens, Moritz Kranz is having the time of his life.
“It’s really, really great right now. Thank you to the team, thank you to Janine, for giving me such a great car and having so much fun together.”
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