Race Weekend Central

Connor de Phillippi, Nick Yelloly Awarded Watkins Glen Victory After Penalty

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – Porsche Penske Motorsport’s Mathieu Jaminet took advantage of lapped traffic to slip around BMW M Team RLL’s Connor de Phillippi with under six minutes to go Sunday (June 25). From there, Jaminet held on to finish first on the road in the Sahlen’s Six Hours at the Glen.

However, that victory was stripped from Porsche nearly five hours after the finish. In post-race inspection, the No. 6 Porsche 963 was found to have a skid block that was too thin. As a result, the team was moved to the rear of the class, giving the overall victory to de Phillippi and Nick Yelloly.

Action Express Racing’s Jack Aitken, Pipo Derani and Alexander Sims are credited with a second-place. Meyer Shank Racing’s Tom Blomqvist and Colin Braun were third, while JDC-Miller MotorSports’ Mike Rockenfeller and Tijmen van der Helm were two laps down in fourth. Chip Ganassi Racing’s Sebastien Bourdais and Renger van der Zande were four laps down in fifth.

With qualifying abandoned partway through due to rain, Porsche Penske Motorsport’s Nick Tandy started from the pole. His stint in the car was marked by a bunch of trouble.

On the first lap, BMW M Team RLL’s Augusto Farfus spun and hit the wall exiting turn 1 after losing control. The BMW M Hybrid V8 suffered a right front suspension failure from the hit and was unable to get back to the pits, causing the first caution. The team was unable to get back out, making for an extremely short day.

Much of the race was dominated by the two Porsches. Tandy led until the first round of stops. The sister No. 7 was able to jump over the No. 6 with a better pit stop, but eventually lost that advantage.

Further back, Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Autosport’s Filipe Albuquerque was the primary challenger to the Porsches, running really well until he had a tire come off his Acura ARX-06 in the third hour. Albuquerque was able to limp his car back to the pits for a new wheel, but lost a lap in the process.

Porsche Penske Motorsport was not immune to trouble. The No. 7 Porsche with Felipe Nasr at the wheel had issues with its hybrid system and was forced to go behind the wall. After more than 90 minutes of work, Nasr was able to return to the track for a little while before the team retired the car.

The biggest incident of the day came with a little less than two hours to go in turn 6. Here, Performance Tech Motorsports’ Alex Kirby collided with Iron Lynx’s Andrea Caldarelli. Caldarelli spun and took both Kirby and NTe Sport’s Rob Ferriol with him into the tire barrier. Van der Zande had nowhere to go and piled in with his Cadillac.

Van der Zande was able to back up and resume. Caldarelli, Ferriol and Kirby were all out on the spot.

The yellow brought the leaders into the pits and the tone of the race changed. Action Express Racing’s Jack Aitken was able to beat everyone out, taking the lead with Colin Braun giving chase while Tandy dropped back to fourth.

The race ultimately came down to pit strategy and pace. De Phillippi was able to come out of the final round of pit stops with a five-second lead over Jaminet.

The lead increased and shrank as de Phillippi and Jaminet encountered lapped traffic. In the closing minutes, Jaminet was able to close up nearly to de Phillippi’s rear wing. The traffic allowed Jaminet to make a move to the inside of de Phillippi exiting turn 7.

Jaminet was able to clear de Phillippi prior to turn 8. A brief off-course excursion for the BMW allowed Jaminet to pull away. Shortly afterwards, Turner Motorsport’s Bill Auberlen spun exiting turn 10 and hit the tires, rolling his BMW over once. That caused the race to end under yellow.

Auberlen was rather sore after the crash, but is otherwise ok. He wasn’t all that pleased, though.

In LMP2, TDS Racing’s Steven Thomas started on pole, but quickly lost his advantage to PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports’ Ben Keating. Keating was able to lead until a strange instance when Tower Motorsports’ Salih Yoluc ran in the back of him entering turn 11. Keating spun out and Yoluc got swept up in it. Thomas tried to go around the incident and ended up putting himself into the tire barrier to bring out a yellow.

Crowdstrike Racing by APR’s George Kurtz was able to snatch the lead after all that mess. Thomas ended up going behind the wall for repairs, losing 10 laps as a result.

Pit strategy and strong pace got AF Corse’s Luis Perez Companc into the class lead at the end of the first hour. For Perez Companc, this was his first race in an LMP2 prototype since 2013. Back then, he raced an open-cockpit ORECA 03-Nissan.

Beyond the second hour, Crowdstrike Racing with APR dominated the race with Kurtz, Nolan Siegel and Ben Hanley. Era Motorsports was able to get to the lead during rounds of stops, but they could not prevent the Crowdstrike ORECA 07 from taking the win.

Era Motorsports’ Ryan Dalziel, Dwight Merriman and Christian Rasmussen were second, followed by Keating, Paul-Loup Chatin and Alex Quinn. TDS Racing’s John Falb, Josh Pierson and Giedo van der Garde were fourth, while Yoluc, Will Stevens and Kyffin Simpson were a lap down in fifth.

LMP3 saw Riley Motorsports’ Gar Robinson start from the pole, but the scramble after Farfus’ crash resulted in a mix-up in class. Ave Motorsports’ Tonis Kasemets led early, then AWA’s Orey Fidani and Andretti Autosport’s Glenn van Berlo.

For much of the early going, Jr III Racing’s No. 30 was up in front. The crash in qualifying Saturday clearly did not hamper Dakota Dickerson and Garret Grist.

For much of the second half of the race, the battle for the class lead was between the Jr III Racing No. 30 and the Riley Motorsports No. 74. After a pit stop with less than an hour to go, Grist and Felipe Fraga had contact in the Inner Loop, resulting in Grist going off the road briefly.

Fraga and Grist swapped the lead a couple of times over the final 40 minutes of the race, but it was the Riley Motorsports Ligier of Fraga, Robinson and Josh Burdon that took the lead. Grist, Dickerson and Ari Balogh were second, then AWA’s No. 17 of Wayne Boyd, Anthony Mantella and Nico Varrone. Andretti Autosport’s van Berlo, Jarett Andretti and Gabby Chaves were fourth, while AWA’s No. 13 for Fidani, Matt Bell and Lars Kern were fifth after a late spin for Bell.

In GTD, USRaceTronics’ Loris Spinelli started from the pole in his Lamborghini, but VasserSullivan’s Frankie Montecalvo was able to take the lead early. Doriane Pin in the Iron Dames Lamborghini was right with Montecalvo and battled hard for the lead with him in the second hour.

During a round of stops at the two-hour mark, the Iron Dames with Michelle Gatting now in the car, beat VasserSullivan out of the pits and took the class lead. Gatting was able to hold onto the lead until it was time for Rahel Frey to get into the car under yellow. Unfortunately, the pit stop was rather slow, dropping the pink Lamborghini down the order.

The Iron Dames’ pit issues put the No. 12 VasserSullivan Lexus back in the lead. Aaron Telitz was able to get in front of all of the GTD Pro teams, then drove away from them.

At the time the final caution flew, the team of Telitz, Montecalvo and Parker Thompson had a 35-second lead over the rest of the class. The yellow simply made it easier to win.

Paul Miller Racing’s Corey Lewis, Bryan Sellers and Madison Snow were second, followed by Wright Motorsports’ Ryan Hardwick, Jan Heylen and Zacharie Robichon were third. Triarsi Competizione’s Alessio Rovera, Charlie Scardina and Onofrio Triarsi scored their best IMSA finish in fourth while Gradient Racing’s Katherine Legge, Marc Miller and Sheena Monk were fifth.

The GTD Pro came down to a three-way duel between Corvette Racing’s Antonio Garcia, VasserSullivan’s Jack Hawksworth and Risi Competizione’s Daniel Serra. Hawksworth led the majority of the race, but a penalty allowed Garcia to take the lead.

Hawksworth stalked Garcia for a number of laps, allowing Serra to join in on the battle. With 23 minutes to go, Hawksworth dove to the inside of Garcia in turn 8 to take the lead back. Serra was able to follow into second.

Serra continued to work on Hawksworth for the remainder of the race while the prototypes would swoop past. However, Serra was unable to get to the back of Hawksworth to prevent Hawksworth and Ben Barnicoat from winning.

Serra and Davide Rigon were second in their Ferrari, followed by Garcia and Jordan Taylor. WeatherTech Racing’s Jules Gounon and Daniel Juncadella were fourth. Pfaff Motorsports’ Klaus Bachler and Patrick Pilet ended up fifth after a late flat tire.

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Sahlen’s Six Hours at the Glen Unofficial Results

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship teams have a split schedule going forward. The GTP, LMP3, GTD Pro and GTD classes will all be back in action in two weeks at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park for the Chevrolet Grand Prix on July 9. LMP2 teams are off until Road America in early August.

About the author

Phil Allaway has three primary roles at Frontstretch. He's the manager of the site's FREE e-mail newsletter that publishes Monday-Friday and occasionally on weekends. He keeps TV broadcasters honest with weekly editions of Couch Potato Tuesday and serves as the site's Sports Car racing editor.

Outside of Frontstretch, Phil is the press officer for Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, N.Y. He covers all the action on the high-banked dirt track from regular DIRTcar Modified racing to occasional visits from touring series such as the Super DIRTcar Series.

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