Porsche Shocks The Field With Petit Le Mans Overall Victory

Pilet Earns Driver Title, Clinches GTLM Manufacturer Title

From winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans overall in a prototype to winning the Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda overall in a GT Le Mans (GTLM) car, something about “Le Mans” style endurance races suits Porsche North America driver Nick Tandy.

With Tandy’s win at a rain-soaked Road Atlanta, the No. 911 Porsche North America team earned its fourth GTLM victory of the season, winning the 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship team title. It also propelled his co-driver Patrick Pilet to the GTLM driver title, beating out No. 25 BMW Team RLL drivers Bill Auberlen and Dirk Werner by 10 points in the standings, 315-305. Tandy did not win the driver championship alongside his teammate because of three races missed due to overseas commitments.

John Edwards, Lucas Luhr and Jens Klingmann finished second in the 10-hour race in the No. 24 BMW/IHG Rewards Club BMW Z4 GTLM. Like the No. 911 Porsche, Klingmann finished ahead of the Prototype category, second overall.

The No. 4 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R of Tommy Milner, Oliver Gavin and IndyCar regular, Ryan Briscoe, earned its first TUDOR Championship podium since January’s Rolex 24 At Daytona where Corvette Racing regulars finished third. Milner and Gavin’s most recent podium came in June’s 24 Hours of Le Mans when they won the GTE Pro class overall with Wayne Taylor Racing’s Jordan Taylor in that very same Corvette. Their Corvette Racing teammates in the No. 3 entry, Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen, finished sixth in today’s race and third in the GTLM points standings.

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Earl Bamber Wins Petit Le Mans GTLM Pole At Road Atlanta

To say today’s GT Le Mans (GTLM) qualifying session was unusual would be an understatement. The 15-minute session for Saturday’s Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda at Road Atlanta saw multiple on-track incidents, penalties and failed post-session inspections.

While Earl Bamber posted the fastest time of the qualifying session, he lost control of his No. 912 Porsche North America Porsche 911 RSR with a few minutes remaining, going off course in Turn 5 and bringing out the red flag to stop the session. Per IMSA rules, the red flag wiped away his fastest time of 1:30.074. Thankfully for Bamber, his second fastest time of 1:30.304 (101.258 mph) was enough to keep him on the pole. However, due to chassis damage sustained in the incident, the team went to a backup car, and the new No. 912 Porsche also co-driven by Joerg Bergmeister and Frederic Makowiecki will start at the back of the GT grid.

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Negri Leads Opening Practice For Petit Le Mans in No. 60 Honda Prototype

Competitors Brave Challenging Conditions At Road Atlanta

It was a good news, bad news scenario for Michael Shank Racing in Thursday’s opening preparations at Road Atlanta for Saturday’s Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda, the final round of the 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship season.

Again demonstrating the potential of the team’s No. 60 AERO Honda/Ligier JS P2, Ozz Negri had the fastest lap of the day in the dry opening session. Competitors then faced a variety of challenges during the next two sessions, with both afternoon and night practice run during the rain. The No. 60 car spun and hit the barrier on the front straight during the night practice with John Pew at the wheel, causing damage that may jeopardize its participation in the event.

Earlier in the day, Negri toured the 12-turn, 2.54-mile road course in a time of 1:15.163 (121.656 mph) to lead Prototype (P) competitors. The Brazilian has led 18 sessions this season – including at least one at all nine permanent circuits on the schedule.

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Miss America 2016 Betty Cantrell to Serve as Grand Marshal at Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda

Road Atlanta announced today that the newly-crowned Miss America 2016, Betty Cantrell from Warner Robins, Ga., will serve as the Grand Marshal for the 18th Annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda on October 3rd.

Betty Cantrell rose to take the 2016 Miss America title after serving as Miss Georgia in 2015. The 21-year old is the first Miss Georgia to be crowned the Miss America title since 1953, and stands for a platform of healthy children, strong America.

Betty is thrilled with the opportunity to not only represent Miss America at Petit Le Mans, but to also add Grand Marshal of the event to her quickly-growing list of honors.

"I'm honored and thrilled to have been invited by Road Atlanta to serve as the Grand Marshal of the Petit Le Mans,” said Betty Cantrell, who stood out amongst the other Miss America contestants by singing opera. “I'm looking forward to coming back to Georgia and enjoying the race."


Petit Fast Facts

  • 10 hours of racing
  • First run on October 10, 1998
  • Class winners of this event receive an automatic invitation to the following year's 24 Hours of Le Mans

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