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Grand race and first victory in Petit Le Mans.

Even after 10 hours, seconds can be decisive. This proved true for the Porsche GT factory team during the IMSA race on the Road Atlanta. Essentially, it was a race against the clock.

After demanding 10 hours during Petit Le Mans they finally made it: the Porsche GT factory team took their first IMSA season victory. Both Porsche teams weren’t spared during an eventful race. Collisions, skids and the incessant pressure from the competition. Once again, this year there was no mercy on Road Atlanta. Though in the end, the team in the Porsche 911 RSR with the befitting starting number 911 proved what it’s made of: a will to win, team spirit and a perfect strategy. Particularly the latter was in high demand, as the field was tightly packed throughout most of the race thanks to Safety Car phases. The lead switched through regularly on the just above 4-kilometer-long racetrack – a sure sign of the tight ranks. Toward the middle of the race, the team around the starting number 911 with the drivers Frédéric Makowiecki, Nick Tandy and Matt Campbell experienced a scare: The vehicle driven by Matt Campbell skidded around its own axis after a collision. The RSR only experienced some light damages and could continue the race.

The starting number 912 with the drivers Laurens Vanthoor, Earl Bamber along with Mathieu Jaminet displayed a strong performance as well. Laurens Vanthoor raced the quickest round of all teams in the GTLM class. Though the team experienced some bumps in form of a drive-through penalty due to a collision. This cost the team precious 30 seconds.

Family matters: The sister car had their backs.

While the starting number 912 had to detour through the box, the sister car was there to further put the lead under pressure. When the top ranked vehicle had to head into the box right before the race was bound to end, Frédéric Makowiecki took the chance and the lead. And this is where the Porsche factory driver stayed until the end of the race, which was finished behind the safety car due to another collision – also involving the starting number 912.

And so, the first victory of the currently running IMSA season was won. The starting number 911 won the race on Road Atlanta with a lead of just 1,799 seconds – beating the clock, so to speak. The sister car with the number 912 met the finish line on fifth place despite being involved through no fault of their own in a collision right before the race ended.

The joy of victory was great – and now it’s onward to sunny California with heads raised high. Because that’s where the next IMSA race is due to take place on November 1.


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