The Porsche GT Team has claimed positions seven and eight at the penultimate round of this year’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
In an uneventful race without any caution phases, the factory drivers Laurens Vanthoor (Belgium) and Earl Bamber (New Zealand) had to grapple with a lack of grip in the No. 912 Porsche 911 RSR, as did their brand colleagues Patrick Pilet (France) and Nick Tandy (Great Britain) in the No. 911 sister car.
“That was a tough race for us,” commented Bamber. “To be honest, judging from the practice sessions, we’d expected this. Laguna Seca is simply not our favourite racetrack. Despite these disappointing results, we’ve taken another step towards winning the title. That means much more to us. Laurens and I have even managed to extend our lead. Now I’m very much looking forward to the grand finale at Petit Le Mans.”
Heading to the season finale at Road Atlanta (USA), Porsche still holds a convincing lead in the manufacturers’ classification. In the GTD class, Porsche has won the Sprint Cup title.
On race day at the Laguna Seca Raceway, the teams and drivers encountered different weather conditions compared to the previous two practice days. The sun barely pierced the thick fog, and the maximum temperature hovered around 20 degrees Celsius. Under these changed conditions, the Porsche 911 RSR lacked grip and thus pace.
With a view to the championship, the Porsche GT Team opted for a low-risk strategy. After a flawless performance from the teams and drivers at Laguna Seca, Porsche tackles “Petit Le Mans”, the final round of the season, with a 15-point lead in the manufacturers’ classification.
In the drivers’ championship, Bamber/Vanthoor have increased their lead over their brand colleagues Pilet/Tandy to twelve points.
Meanwhile, in the GTD class, Porsche has won the manufacturers’ classification of the IMSA Sprint Cup. The two Canadians Zacharie Robichon and Scott Hargrove concluded the race in the No. 9 Porsche 911 GT3 R fielded by Pfaff Motorsports on fourth place.
With this result, Robichon, who is contesting his first IMSA season, has secured the drivers’ title in the Sprint Cup, which consists of the seven shortest GTD races of the year.
The race at Laguna Seca marks the final round of this Sprint Cup, with the final ten-hour race at Road Atlanta (“Petit Le Mans”) no longer included in the series. Park Place Motorsports with factory drivers Patrick Long (USA) and his compatriot Patrick Lindsey was unable to contest the race due to an accident in qualifying.
1. Müller/Hand (D/USA), Ford GT, 114 laps
2. Krohn/Edwards (FIN/USA), BMW M8 GTE, 114 laps
3. Magnussen/Garcia (DK/E), Corvette C7.R, 114 laps
7. Bamber/Vanthoor (NZ/B), Porsche 911 RSR, 113 laps
8. Pilet/Tandy (F/GB), Porsche 911 RSR, 113 laps
1. Sellers/Lewis (USA/USA), Lamborghini Huracan GT3, 110 laps
2. MacNeil/Vilander (USA/FIN), Ferrari 488 GT3, 110 laps
3. Potter/Lally (USA/USA), Lamborghini Huracan GT3, 109 laps
4. Robichon/Hargrove (CDN/CDN), Porsche 911 GT3 R, 109 laps