Sebring 12H: Bourdais, Duval, Vautier win in JDC-Miller Cadillac

Tristan Vautier, Loic Duval and Sebastien Bourdais clinched an amazing Sebring 12 Hours victory for the JDC-Miller team, coming from a lap down to beat defending race-winner Mazda.

Sebring 12H: Bourdais, Duval, Vautier win in JDC-Miller Cadillac

An earlier collision with Jimmie Johnson's #48 AXR Cadillac had helped the JDC-Miller car fall a lap behind in the first half of the race, but after hours of toil, the #5 had managed to return to the lead lap following a caution period.

Mike Conway's #31 AXR Cadillac ground to a halt on track with under two hours to go, prompting all the prototype cars to pit in anticipation of the seventh caution period of the race, and allowing Bourdais in his own Cadillac to return to the lead lap.

The JDC-Miller team then began to swashbuckle its way through its DPi class rivals, clearing Alexander Rossi in the Wayne Taylor Racing Acura - the WTR car had been suffering from an intercooler issue following earlier contact.

Mazda's Oliver Jarvis then pitted to hand over the RT-24P car to Harry Tincknell with just over an hour to go, and that triggered other teams to respond.

One of those was Chip Ganassi Racing, which reportedly made a late call to race leader Scott Dixon to bring him in just after he lapped a GTLM BMW. As Dixon tried to swerve the #01 Cadillac onto pitlane, he was struck hard in the right front corner by the BMW, necessitating steering repairs and a new nose, costing the car three laps.

Thus Bourdais, driving the JDC-Miller Cadillac that had run at least one lap down for the majority of the race zoomed into the lead with little more than hour to go with a seven second lead over Tincknell’s Mazda - which became eight when he made his final stop.

After a final caution period for a GTD crash, Bourdais escaped initially from Tincknell at the restart, but a couple of slow laps left him within striking distance of the Mazda before edging away again.

But Kamui Kobayashi in the #48 had deposed both the Acuras and had moved onto Tincknell’s tail – and occasionally alongside him, relieving the pressure from Bourdais.

Bourdais then crossed the line with 1.4s over Tincknell, claiming a famous victory as Kobayashi was just 0.2s further back having been resisted by Tincknell.

 

With Kobayashi's Cadillac demoted to seventh and last in the DPi class, as AXR caused a drive-time infraction by leaving Simon Pagenaud in the car too long, the Meyer Shank Racing and WTR Acuras were promoted to third and fourth respectively.

The Chip Ganassi Cadillac was left two laps down in fifth after Dixon's earlier incident.

In LMP2, Mikkel Jensen brought the PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports Oreca home first ahead of Ryan Dalziel in the Rolex 24-winning Era Motorsport entry.

LMP3 developed into a feisty four-way battle in the dying hours, until the Forty7 Motorsports Duqueine of Oliver Askew suddenly died temporarily, consigning it to fourth.

Remarkably, CORE Autosport, with Colin Braun, George Kurtz and Jon Bennett at the wheel of the team's Ligier, defeated the two Riley Motorsports Ligiers.

Mathieu Jaminet crossed the line first among the GTLM runners to secure victory for the WeatherTech Porsche team, taking advantage of a class lead collision between the #3 Corvette and the #25 RLL BMW.

Garcia, who had led the class for most of the race, had struggled on pace and lost ground to both BMWs and the sole Porsche 911 RSR, but re-took the lead having required less fuel at the at his penultimate stop - while the #24 BMW caught fire due to a fuel spillage as John Edwards switched places with Jesse Krohn.

Although Krohn returned to the circuit, he was a lap down in fourth, as Connor De Phillippi took over the other BMW from Philipp Eng and Matt Campbell tagged out of the Porsche for Jaminet.

However, Jaminet got ahead after the final stops, then lost out to De Phillippi after the final restart, as the BMW started trying to close down Garcia. Having caught up, he nudged into the Corvette at Turn 7, and pushed it wide - both sustaining damage.

De Phillippi recovered with his damaged car, but ran wide at Turn 15 and then had to serve a drive-through penalty.

Thus Jaminet’s Porsche grabbed the lead, the limping Corvette was so slow that De Phillippi reemerged from his penalty still in second and the one-lap down #24 BMW moved up into third.

 

Laurens Vanthoor and Patrick Long completed a Porsche 1-2 finish in the GT Daytona category, as the Pfaff Motorsports team controlled the class expertly.

Zacharie Robichon took over from Vanthoor earlier in the race, after the Belgian had reclaimed the lead from the Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini.

Wright Motorsports' Porsche had tailed Robichon by seven seconds with the final three hours remaining, but had to serve a drive-through penalty with Trent Hindman at the wheel for having one too many pitcrew members over the wall - dropping to sixth.

The GTD cars hit the pitlane during the penultimate caution , the Pfaff Porsche emerging still in front – now driven by Vanthoor once more.

Zach Veach, taking over from Frankie Montecalvo in the Vasser Sullivan Lexus, lost out because he had pitted under green - moments before the yellows. Veach then sprinted away before the drop of the green flag – and then had his rear bumper knocked onto the tyre by an impact from Vanthoor, leaving the ex-IndyCar driver having to pit for repairs and then serve a drive-through penalty.

Vanthoor was not penalised and rocketed away from second-placed Ross Gunn in the Aston Martin Vantage, who was ahead of the Wright Motorsport Porsche now driven by Long.

Long then cleared Gunn, bringing the Wright car back into second place, ahead of a final caution period when the #75 Mercedes-AMG GT3 driven by Maro Engel shed a wheel coming onto the pit straight, spinning and striking the wall.

Vanthoor pulled away from Long at the restart, leaving Gunn in third to secure a Porsche 1-2 finish.

Team Hardpoint's Katherine Legge and Magnus Racing's Andy Lally clashed while fighting over fourth place - Legge was perceived to be at fault and was penalised, dropping to fifth behind Lally's Acura.

Race results:

Cla Class Num Driver Chassis Laps Time
1 DPi 5 France Tristan Vautier
France Loic Duval
France Sébastien Bourdais
Cadillac DPi 349 12:01'01.418
2 DPi 55 United Kingdom Oliver Jarvis
United Kingdom Harry Tincknell
United States Jonathan Bomarito
Mazda DPi 349 12:01'02.853
3 DPi 48 United States Jimmie Johnson
Japan Kamui Kobayashi
France Simon Pagenaud
Cadillac DPi 349 12:01'03.059
4 DPi 60 United States Dane Cameron
France Olivier Pla
Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya
Acura DPi 349 12:01'04.032
5 DPi 10 United States Ricky Taylor
Portugal Filipe Albuquerque
United States Alexander Rossi
Acura DPi 349 12:01'06.736
6 DPi 01 Netherlands Renger van der Zande
Denmark Kevin Magnussen
New Zealand Scott Dixon
Cadillac DPi 347 12:01'05.102
7 LMP2 52 United States Ben Keating
Denmark Mikkel Jensen
United States Scott Huffaker
ORECA LMP2 07 344 12:01'23.212
8 LMP2 18 United States Dwight Merriman
United Kingdom Kyle Tilley
United Kingdom Ryan Dalziel
ORECA LMP2 07 344 12:01'25.799
9 GTLM 79 United States Cooper MacNeil
France Mathieu Jaminet
Australia Matt Campbell
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 334 12:02'42.220
10 GTLM 25 United States Connor de Phillippi
Austria Philipp Eng
Canada Bruno Spengler
BMW M8 GTE 333 12:01'18.541
11 LMP2 22 James McGuire
United Kingdom Wayne Boyd
United Kingdom Guy Smith
ORECA LMP2 07 333 12:02'14.977
12 GTLM 24 United States John Edwards
Finland Jesse Krohn
Brazil Augusto Farfus
BMW M8 GTE 333 12:02'43.161
13 GTLM 3 Spain Antonio Garcia
United States Jordan Taylor
Netherlands Nick Catsburg
Corvette C8.R 333 12:02'51.712
14 GTLM 4 United States Tommy Milner
United Kingdom Nick Tandy
United Kingdom Alexander Sims
Corvette C8.R 330 12:01'14.546
15 LMP3 54 United States Jon Bennett
United States George Kurtz
United States Colin Braun
Ligier JS P320 329 12:02'33.175
16 LMP3 91 United States Jim Cox
United States Dylan Murry
Netherlands Jeroen Bleekemolen
Ligier JS P320 329 12:02'35.860
17 LMP3 74 United States Gar Robinson
Australia Scott Andrews
United States Spencer Pigot
Ligier JS P320 329 12:02'36.376
18 LMP3 7 United States Jim Norman
United States Oliver Askew
United States Austin McCusker
Duqueine D08 328 12:01'40.493
19 LMP3 33 Portugal Joao Barbosa
France Yann Clairay
United States Lance Willsey
Ligier JS P320 328 12:02'50.163
20 GTD 9 Canada Zacharie Robichon
Belgium Laurens Vanthoor
Germany Lars Kern
Porsche 911 GT3 R 320 12:01'25.556
21 GTD 16 United States Patrick Long
Belgium Jan Heylen
United States Trent Hindman
Porsche 911 GT3 R 320 12:01'27.668
22 GTD 23 United Kingdom Ian James
Canada Roman De Angelis
United Kingdom Ross Gunn
Aston Martin Vantage GT3 320 12:01'48.947
23 GTD 44 United States John Potter
United States Andy Lally
United States Spencer Pumpelly
Acura NSX GT3 320 12:02'08.207
24 GTD 88 Denmark Christina Nielsen
United Kingdom Katherine Legge
Brazil Ana Beatriz
Porsche 911 GT3 R 320 12:02'18.500
25 GTD 12 United States Frankie Montecalvo
United States Zach Veach
United States Robert Megennis
Lexus RC F GT3 319 12:01'39.225
26 GTD 14 United States Aaron Telitz
United Kingdom Jack Hawksworth
United States Kyle Kirkwood
Lexus RC F GT3 313 12:01'31.478
27 GTD 96 United States Bill Auberlen
United States Robby Foley
Australia Aidan Read
BMW M6 GT3 313 12:01'36.058
28 GTD 75 Australia Kenny Habul
Germany Maro Engel
Canada Mikael Grenier
Mercedes-AMG GT3 304 11:24'26.045
29 DPi 31 Brazil Felipe Nasr
United Kingdom Mike Conway
Brazil Pipo Derani
Cadillac DPi 292 10:04'05.751
30 GTD 99 United States Rob Ferriol
New Zealand Earl Bamber
United States Trenton Estep
Porsche 911 GT3 R 280 12:01'36.620
31 LMP2 8 Canada John Farano
France Gabriel Aubry
France Timothé Buret
ORECA LMP2 07 266 9:14'04.319
32 LMP3 83 United Kingdom Matthew Bell
United States Rodrigo Sales
Niklas Kruetten
Duqueine D08 265 10:51'09.230
33 GTD 1 United States Bryan Sellers
United States Madison Snow
United States Corey Lewis
Lamborghini Huracan GT3 255 9:37'34.679
34 LMP3 38 Sweden Rasmus Lindh
Guatemala Mateo Llarena
Dan Goldburg
Ligier JS P320 177 6:24'04.063
35 GTD 28 Canada Daniel Morad
United States Michael de Quesada
United States Billy Johnson
Mercedes-AMG GT3 91 3:19'57.664
36 GTD 19 South Africa Stephen Simpson
France Franck Perera
Germany Tim Zimmermann
Lamborghini Huracan GT3 91 3:19'57.925
37 LMP2 11 United States Thomas Steven
United States Tristan Nunez
United States Thomas Merrill
ORECA LMP2 07 90 3:33'28.269
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Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac leads Sebring 12H after six hours

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