Last weekend at the Alastaro track in Finland, Valters made a successful debut in the prestigious Porsche Sprint Challenge NEZ series, winning second place overall and victory in the Junior class in the first race. At the start of the second race, the Latvian pilot got stuck behind a competitor, which caused him to lose places and finish the race as fifth overall and third in the Junior standings.
After winning the Baltic highway titles in the TCR and BMW 325 Cup classes, Valters has taken a step forward this season and is the first Latvian driver in history to compete in the Finland-based Porsche Sprint Challenge NEZ series. Valters competes in the team managed by the legendary Lithuanian Ramūnas Čapkauskas, driving the latest generation Porsche 911 GT3 CUP car.
In Friday’s official training sessions, the Latvian pilot completed his first kilometers with the new Porsche, increasing his speed with each session. At the end of the day, he managed to be among the fastest, which allowed competing in Saturday morning’s qualifying session with confidence. He set a good lap time, qualifying in fourth position, just 0.2 seconds off the grid.
In the first race on Saturday, Valters got off to a great start, which immediately allowed him to rise to third place. In the further course of the race, he continued to demonstrate excellent speed and overtook the experienced Finnish driver Henri Tuomaala a few laps before the end, finishing second overall in his debut at the wheel of the Porsche 911 GT3 CUP and winning the Junior class.
In Sunday’s race, the start was again from the fourth position, however, in the first turn, the competitors slightly pushed him off the track, which made him fall to fifth place. Even though Valters sat behind the Lithuanian driver Robertas Kupčikas throughout the journey and was ready to take advantage of the slightest mistake of his competitor, Kupčikas made no mistakes and Valters finished in fifth place overall and third in the Junior class.
“Qualification was relatively successful and the results were very close, as the first five drivers showed times within one second. I started the first race from the fourth place and after a good start, I moved up to the third place. With a good speed, I was able to overtake the local driver a few laps before the end and to finish in second place. Spectacular ride with lots of overtaking and great speed. In the second race, I started from the fourth place again, because the starting positions are determined after the fastest laps of the first race. The very start was successful, but in the first corner, I was forced off the track and fell to the fifth position. There was a fight with the winner of the first race, Robertas Kupčikas, throughout the race, but unfortunately, I did not manage to overtake him and I finished fifth,” says Valters about the race weekend.
The next stage of the Porsche Sprint Challenge NEZ will take place on 9-10 June at the Biķernieki track in Riga, Latvia as part of the Baltic Highway Championship “DeWALT Grand Prix”. In his home track Valters is ready to fight for the highest positions, therefore we kindly encourage Latvian motorsport fans to come and support Valters in person at the Biķernieki race track!
Valters and the team would like to say a big thanks to the supporters: Optibet Latvija, Jūrmala, Visit Jūrmala, Blue Shock Race, NPK Expert, Joker club, Energolukss, I-Con and Dārta SIA. We are proud to bring the name of Latvia to the world and to compete with the highest level of technical equipment.