Race Weekend Central

Mathieu Jaminet, Nick Tandy Win Motul Course de Monterey

Action Express Racing’s Jack Aitken led most of the second half of the race Sunday (May 12) at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. Then, while trying to get through lapped traffic, Aitken went wide in turn 4 and got in the dirt.

That was all Penske Porsche Motorsport’s Nick Tandy needed to take the lead. From there, he held on to win the Motul Course de Monterey with teammate Mathieu Jaminet.

“I can’t believe how many mistakes I made,” Tandy told NBC Sports’ Brian Till in victory lane. “I needed everyone else here to make up for it. We were not good on cold tires, but…on double stint tires, it was absolutely flawless.

“Not one of my finest races, but I’ll take it since we’ve done some awesome races and not had any results,” Tandy continued. “It’s about time we’ve had a result.”

The margin of victory was seconds over Aitken and Pipo Derani. The No. 7 Penske Porsche of Dane Cameron and Felipe Nasr were third, followed by Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Global’s Louis Deletraz and Jordan Taylor. Chip Ganassi Racing’s Sebastien Bourdais and Renger van der Zande ended up fifth.

Bourdais led the field to green in his Cadillac VSeries.R and managed to open up a decent lead in the opening laps. That lead only continued to expand once the leaders caught the back of the GTD class.

Bourdais’ lead expanded to over 10 seconds over Derani. Meanwhile, Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Global’s Ricky Taylor was forced to make an unscheduled pit stop to tire performance exceeding the limits. As a result of the unplanned pit stop, he ended up a lap down.

The race was clean and green until Conquest Racing’s Manny Franco spun into the dirt in turn 6 48 minutes into the race. Franco didn’t hit anything, but did scatter a bunch of dirt and gravel onto the track when he rejoined.

Later on, Penske Porsche Motorsport’s Dane Cameron was hit from behind. That resulted in one of the rear wing supports ending up on the track and bringing out the only full course caution just under an hour into the race.

Everyone came to pit road here, shaking up the field. Bourdais pitted from the lead, but had to take on more fuel. Action Express Racing’s Jack Aitken won the race off pit road and took the lead. WTRAndretti’s No. 10 was able to get back on the lead lap as well.

Corvette Racing with Pratt Miller Motorsports’ Nicky Catsburg started from pole in his Chevrolet Corvette Z06 GT3.R and joined with Antonio Garcia in order to run away from the rest of the class. Pfaff Motorsports’ Marvin Kirchhoefer gave chase.

The Corvettes dominated the early portion of the race, then decided to split their pit strategy. Catsburg pitted fairly early, while Garcia waited longer. Ultimately, the caution burned Garcia as he ended up stuck down the order.

The Pfaff McLaren of Oliver Jarvis ended up with the class lead, but AO Racing’s Laurin Heinrich was right on his tail. A couple of laps after the restart, Heinrich took “Rexy” to the point.

After the next round of stops, Heinrich was able to expand his advantage to over 11 seconds over Kirchhoefer. From there, Heinrich was able to hold on to take the victory for himself and Sebastian Priaulx. It is AO Racing’s first GTD Pro victory.

AO Racing’s margin of victory was 9.074 seconds over Jarvis and Kirchhoefer. Catsburg and Tommy Milner were third in their Corvette, then VasserSullivan’s Ben Barnicoat and Jack Hawksworth. Garcia and Alexander Sims were fifth.

In GTD, Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Global’s Danny Formal started from pole in his Lamborghini and held off Turner Motorsport’s Patrick Gallagher in the opening laps. Together, the two drivers pulled out a three-second margin over Winward Racing’s Russell Ward.

The caution resulted in a round of stops that split the field up. The WTRAndretti Lamborghini dropped back to fifth as Robby Foley in the Turner BMW came to the front.

Foley dominated much of the second half of the race, then fell victim to a different yet similar fate to Aitken. With five minutes to go, Winward Racing’s Daniel Morad had run Foley down to set up a battle for the win. Meanwhile, WTRAndretti’s Jordan Taylor, running fourth overall, ran down both of the GTD leaders and was being rather rough in trying to make his way through slower traffic.

On entry to turn 4, Jordan Taylor and Foley made contact, sending Foley off into the dirt. Morad was able to slip past on the inside to take the lead. No penalty was given to Jordan Taylor for the contact. From there, Moran and Ward held on to take their second win of the year.

Morad and Ward’s margin of victory was 3.458 seconds over Foley and Gallagher. Wright Motorsports’ Adam Adelson and Elliott Skeer, who weren’t originally supposed to compete in this race before adding it to their schedule, were third.

Korthoff Preston Motorsports’ Mikael Grenier and Mike Skeen were fourth in their Mercedes, while Formal and Kyle Marcelli were fifth.

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Motul Course de Monterey Unofficial Results

Next up for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship depends on what class. The next race on the schedule is the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix in Downtown Detroit for the GTP and GTD Pro classes. That race will air on June 1 at 3 p.m. ET on USA Network. For the GTD and the absent LMP2 classes, their next race is the Sahlen’s Six Hours at the Glen on June 23.

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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