Porsche second at Laguna Seca IMSA epic
Works RSR just 2.4 seconds off victory in penultimate race of the year
Porsche’s works effort in the US narrowly missed out on a second IMSA Sports Car Championship victory of the season after a thrilling race on the storied Laguna Seca circuit in California, the venue which only weeks later played host to Rennsport Reunion VI.
Starting from 7th position on the grid in the GTLM class, the #912 works car of Laurens Vanthoor and Earl Bamber battled through a hectic field over the two hour and 40 minute race, made entertaining by vastly different fuel strategies between teams, not to mention the many caution periods.
During one caution period at the halfway mark the #912 team decided to pit Earl Bamber early, handing the lead over to Laurens Vanthoor. The Belgian had to complete the race on one tank of fuel and a single set of tyres while keeping the rest of the field at bay. A near-flawless drive from the works driver ensured the car took second place behind the BMW M8 GTE, finishing just behind it in a closely contested finish.
The sister #911 car of Nick Tandy and
Patrick Pilet, which qualified for the race in 6th position, was forced into early retirement right from the start after colliding with a damaged prototype car.
The teams will now head to Road Atlanta over the weekend of 10-13th October for the ten-hour season finale, dubbed ‘Petit Le Mans’. Porsche sits 3rd in the manufacturers standings, 21 points behind Ford, while driver and team accolades look unlikely this year.