Just a few kilometres from the picturesque Lake Balaton, the brand new Balaton Park circuit hosted the first round of the ESET CUP SERIES. Here is the report on the weekend’s 3 GT races.

RACE 1 :

Despite finishing the race behind the safety car, Martin Kaczmarski from PTT Racing dominated from the start and rightfully claimed victory in the season’s opening event.

Adam Konopka kicked off his first GT career race from pole position next to Martin Kaczmarski in a Mercedes AMG GT3. It was Kaczmarski who took the lead in the race amidst the jostle of the first and second turns, moving ahead of Konopka and Dennis Waszka driving a Lamborghini SuperTropheo in the GTC category.

However, experienced racer Miro Konopka in a Lamborghini Huracán GT3 soon overtook Waszka, with GT3 cars taking over the lead positions in the order of Kaczmarski, Adam Konopka, and Miro Konopka. Dennis Waszek led the GTC category, while Hubert Darmetko was first in the GTC1 category with a Porsche 992 Cup.

Kaczmarski gradually built a comfortable lead over his pursuers. Midway through the race, however, a safety car was deployed after Adam Konopka spun out and got stuck, unable to extricate himself from gravel trap.

Miro Konopka moved up to second place behind the safety car, with Dennis Waszek third overall, circling under yellow flags. The removal of the yellow Lamborghini took a considerable time, and the safety car led the racers to the finish line.

Thus, Martin Kaczmarski won the race, followed by Miro Konopka. In the GTC category, Dennis Waszek triumphed with a Lamborghini SuperTropheo, ahead of fellow drivers Andrej Lah and Libor Dvořáček, both in similar models.

In the GTC1 category, featuring Porsche vehicles, Hubert Darmetko claimed victory over Franz Lahmer and Bob Bau. In the GTX category, Petr Koukola reached the podium first with a KTM GTX, followed by former Octavia Cup champion Gábor Tim in a Lotus, and Kalmán Bódis in a Porsche.

Among GT4 cars, last year’s category winner Antal Zsigo was victorious, beating Rudolf Beňo and Andrej Makarović.


RACE 2 :

Czech racer Dennis Waszek from the GT2 Motorsport team with a Lamborghini SuperTropheo dominated the final ESET Cup race at Balaton Park. Starting from third place, he executed the best start, taking the lead from the first lap.

The front row at the start of the second ESET Cup race was occupied by the family duo Adam Konopka and Miro Konopka. The two yellow Lamborghini Huracán GT3s entered the start-finish straight from the most advantageous positions, but it was Dennis Waszek, starting third, who reacted best to the rolling start and immediately took his Lamborghini, in the GTC category, to the front.

Adam Konopka fell to second place, with Miro Konopka circling in third. In fourth overall and first in the GTC1 category was Hubert Darmetko.

This race was not marred by yellow flags or safety car interventions. Dennis Waszek maintained his lead and crossed the finish line first overall and in the GTC classification, beating Andrej Lah and Libor Dvořák, both also driving Lamborghinis.

Adam Konopka finished second overall and first in the GT3 category, celebrating his inaugural victory in the ESET Cup. He was followed by his father, Miro Konopka, finishing proudly behind him.

In the GTC1 category, Hubert Darmetko of PTT Racing claimed victory, followed by Petr Brecka and third-placed Radek Kolařík. Petr Koukola dominated the GTX category with a KTM GTX, winning ahead of Gábor Tim and Kalmán Bódis.

The most intriguing battle unfolded in the GT4 category, where Antal Zsigo and Rudolf Beňo, both driving BMW M4 GT4s, vied for the top spot. They were closely trailed by Mark Kastelic in a Mercedes AMG GT4. Although they finished in this order, they raced closely throughout the event.



The opening endurance race of this season took place at the Balaton Park Circuit. Although Štefan Rosina initially set the pace with his BMW M4 GT3, the Kaczmarski-Lisowski duo in a Mercedes AMG GT3 from PTT Racing eventually took the lead and won.

Kaczmarski accelerated as soon as the pace car left the track, but the red lights were still on, forcing him to slow down. Rosina, who had already gained speed, comfortably passed Kaczmarski in the first turn along with Mráz in a KTM GTX. However, an accident between Petr Koukol and Bob Bau in the second lap brought out the safety car.

After several minutes, the race restarted and continued uninterrupted until the mandatory mid-race pit stops, during which some teams swapped drivers. Lisowski took over from Kaczmarski in the Mercedes and, upon returning to the track, immediately began setting the race’s fastest laps. The PTT Racing team’s Mercedes took the lead, and Lisowski held it until the end of the race. The Kaczmarski-Lisowski duo won the first endurance event of the 2024 season ahead of Štefan Rossina, who completed the race without a co-driver. Miro Konopka finished third in the GT3 category with his Lamborghini Huracan.

In the GTX category, the Mráz-Homola pair won, finishing fifth overall with their KTM. The GTC category was dominated by the Knoll-Záruba in a Lamborghini SuperTropheo, followed by Lah-Kočić in the same type of vehicle.

Hubert Darmetko led the GTC1 category in a Porsche 992 Cup. The Polish team PTT Racing thus achieved not only an overall victory but also topped their group. Following Darmetko, the Brecka-Neffe team finished in a Porsche. Franz Lahmer, in another Porsche, finished third.

In the GT4 category, the Slovak pair of Beňo-Gonda triumphed with a BMW M4, followed by Antal Zsigo, also in a BMW, and the Kastelic-Mladenovic team in a Mercedes AMG GT4.


Photos by Erwan Seite




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