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Sebring 12h: Deletraz bests Bourdais to claim victory for Acura

Deletraz, driving the Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti’s No. 40 Acura ARX-06, applied the pressure with less than six minutes to go on Cadillac Racing’s Sebastien Bourdais, who had a firm hold of the lead for much of the final hour. The two tangled with on-track shoves, but it was Deletraz that prevailed with a Turn 10 move around the 17-turn, 3.74-mile circuit to win the 72nd edition of IMSA’s endurance classic.

The Final Four Hours

Maxime Martin’s No. 25 BMW M Hybrid V8 led the field to the restart, which commenced just five minutes at the conclusion of the eighth hour. Despite the tight push into Turn 1, he was able to hold off Matheiu Jaminet (Porsche Penske Motorsports) and Ricky Taylor (Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti).

It didn’t take long – 20 minutes, to be exact – for Taylor’s No. 10 Acura ARX-06 to work around the No. 6 Porsche 963 of Jaminet.

Taylor then began to close on the lead and got within 0.4s of Martin, who began cutting through traffic and ended up making contact with Matteo Cressoni in Iron Lynx’s No. 60 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2 in Turn 15. Cressoni was able to continue on, while Martin saw his lead shrink even more.

As Taylor continued to gain ground, traces of smoke could be seen occasionally trailing his Acura. Regardless of that, though, Taylor’s pace continued, and he caught Martin out in traffic and put on a move to take the lead with 23 minutes remaining in the ninth hour.

A run of pit stops by the leaders soon after saw Taylor hand off to Brendon Hartley, who maintained the top spot, which was now occupied by Renger van der Zande in the No. 01 Cadillac V-Series.R.

Martin handed off to Nick Yelloly, who came out third.

The action was halted for a ninth time after the No. 6 Penske Porsche 963 of Fred Makowiecki, running fourth in GTP and overall, dove under Katherine Legge’s No. 66 Acura NSX GT3 entering Turn 17. The two made contact, which sent Legge into a wild spin briefly before making hard contact into the tire barrier. Makowiecki was able to continue on, while Legge climbed out under her own power.

#66 Gradient Racing Acura NSX GT3: Sheena Monk, Katherine Legge, Tatjana Calderon (Photo by: Jake Galstad / Motorsport Images)

The caution happened right at the conclusion of the ninth hour.

Some of the field took another opportunity for service in the pits, with most of the attention focused on the No. 10 Acura of Hartley as the crew investigated for the source of the occasional omitting smoke.

By opting not to pit, Makowiecki inherited the lead, with Gianmaria Bruni running second in the No. 5 Porsche 963 for Proton Competition. Matt Campbell, piloting the Porsche Penske Motorsports’ No. 7 GTP machine, rose to third.

Cadillac Racing’s van der Zande sat fourth, ahead of Yelloly. Hartley ended up falling to ninth, behind Romain Grosjean, who was listed a lap down in Iron Lynx’s Lamborghini SC63.

The race resumed 13 minutes after the conclusion of the ninth hour, with Makowiecki getting a clean start and accelerating away from Campbell, who managed to climb to second.

Moments later, Makowiecki lost the lead after his right-rear tire exploded and he was forced to nurse back to the pits. This propelled his team-mate, Campbell, to the lead and the Cadillac of van der Zande to third.

Through all of the drama of GTP, there was still a tight fight in LMP2 as Nico Pino (United Autosports USA) held a narrow lead of two tenths of a second over Hunter McElrea (TDS Racing). Paul Di Resta (United Autosports USA) quietly assumed third at 1.7s back.

Ben Barnicoat returned for another stint behind the wheel of Vasser Sullivan’s No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 and served up a GTD Pro lead of 4.4s over Chistopher Mies in the Ford Mustang GT3.

#14 VasserSullivan Lexus RC F GT3: Jack Hawksworth, Ben Barnicoat, Kyle Kirkwood, #12 VasserSullivan Lexus RC F GT3: Frankie Montecalvo, Parker Thompson, Aaron Telitz, #19 Iron Lynx Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2: Franck Perera, Jordan Pepper, Mirko Bortolotti, #1 Paul Miller Racing BMW M4 GT3: Bryan Sellers, Madison Snow, Neil Verhagen (Photo by: Michael L. Levitt / Motorsport Images)

Meanwhile, Indy Dontje, driving the No. 57 Mercedes AMG GT for Winward Racing, sported a 9s advantage over Parker Thompson in Vasser Sullivan’s GTD entry.

With 20 minutes left in Hour 10, Campbell continued to hold a lead of four tenths of a second over van der Zande. Yelloly held third at 1s back, while Colton Herta, driving the No. 40 Acura ARX-06 for Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti, in fourth a 2.5s behind.

Only five minutes later Herta managed to close on the back of Yelloly to challenge for third, which he cycled up to seconds later after Campbell elected to dive to the pits. Although van der Zande was handed the lead with Campbell pitting, it would only be momentarily as he pitted the next lap and gave the lead to Yelloly. The stop for van der Zande saw him hand off to Sebastien Bourdais.

During this stretch, Herta was able to manage the traffic and push to the lead by Yelloly and pull a 2s gap with only eight minutes remaining in the hour.

At this point, Pino dove to pit road and gave up the class lead in LMP2, vaulting McElrea to the top spot.

With two hours to go, Herta stretched his lead to over 6s on Yelloly, who was only 3s ahead of BMW team-mate Augusto Farfus in third.

Herta gave up his stranglehold on the lead dove to the pits just five minutes into Hour 11, swapping places with co-driver Jordan Taylor. With Yelloly pitting two laps prior – and making way for Connor De Phillippi to take over, Bruni took the lead briefly before eventually giving way to Bourdais.

#40 Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Acura ARX-06: Jordan Taylor, Louis Deletraz, Colton Herta (Photo by: Jake Galstad / Motorsport Images)

While the top spot was a revolving door due to pit strategy sequences, LMP2’s fight was heating up once again as McElrea managed to catch Pino as they hit traffic. Even though the pair went side-by-side and split an GTD car in the sequence, it was McElrea coming out with the lead. From there, Toby Sowery (Crowdstrike Racing by APR) closed heavily on Pino and was able to secure the runner-up position moments later. Despite the stout pace in the stint, Sowery was held in check by 2s by McElrea.

GTD Pro saw Barnicoat trade his seat with co-driver Jack Hawksworth, who maintained a lead by 1.5s out of the pits. However, AO Racing’s Laurens Heinrich closed to within four tenths of a second before caution came out for the 10th time for debris in Turn 16.

The halt in action also wiped away a stout lead of over 8s by Winward Racing’s Philip Ellis – in for Dontje – in GTD.

Back to GTP, Bourdais pitted from the lead moments before the caution, which elevated Jordan Taylor up the leaderboard.

A cycle of pit stops happened once again and Louis Deletraz swapped with Jordan Taylor as the closer of the final run to the finish. De Phillippi and Philipp Eng, in the No. 24 BMW, followed Deletraz off pit lane.

This exchange allowed Bourdais to vault into the lead, with Felipe Nasr behind in the No. 7 Penske Porsche 963, followed by Deletraz, De Phillippi and Eng.

The caution also shook up the standings in LMP2 as DragonSpeed’s Mikkel Jakobsen catapulted to the top spot, ahead of TDS Racing’s Mikkel Jensen – in for McElrea – and Colin Braun, who took over for Sowery.

Despite leading going into the pits, Hawksworth came out second in GTD Pro behind Daniel Juncadella in the No. 3 Corvette Z06 GT3.R. And Winward Racing was also tossed off the top spot in GTD with Ellis restarting second to Andy Lally in the No. 44 Aston Martin Vantage GT3 Evo for Magnus Racing.

Bourdais vs. Deletraz

The green flag returned with 58 minutes left in the running as Bourdais led the field into Turn 1. The 45-year-old Frenchman got a strong launch, pulling 3s on Nasr and 3.5s on Deletraz over the following two laps.

During this, Hawksworth managed to get around Juncadella to retake the lead in GTD Pro, with Elllis also reclaiming the GTD lead.

The yellow flag returned after multiple cars were stopped on course in Turn 9, which proved to be a brief hiatus until the race resumed.

Although Bourdais once again kept the lead, the LMP2 order changed with Braun surging forward with Conor Zilsch in the No. 18 for Era Motorsport.

Then yellow flag came out once more for debris in Turns 15-16, setting up only 35 minutes left in the running.

During this caution, Filipe Albuquerque, running the No. 10 Acura ARX-06 for Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti, opted to pit for fresh tires and charge in an all-out effort to go full rich to the end. He returned to the running order eighth.

Daniel Serra, in the No. 62 Ferrari 296 GT3 for Risi Competizione, was able to swing to the lead in GTD Pro, with Hawksworth in tow and Juncadella in third. Meanwhile, Ellis was still out front in GTD as the clock under caution continued to tick down to 25 minutes left.

The race restarted with 23 minutes to go as Bourdais took the green, but it was Deletraz under attack by Nasr. Despite the effort, Nasr failed to push by and the fight allowed a chance to Bourdais to stretch a lead of nearly 2s.

The battle for the lead in GTD Pro began to get physical as Hawkworth made a move on Serra, but was then hit slightly by his rival. Then, the two went side-by-side and began to lean on each other, which resulted in Serra falling from the contention and dropping to third. Juncadella moved up to second behind Hawksworth.

Braun’s fight for the win went away after colliding with the Riley of Felipe Fraga, which prompted Zillisch out front by four tenths of a second as Braun dropped to 10th in class.

Meanwhile, the battle in GTP began to tighten as Deletraz closed to within 0.6s of Bourdais with 15 minutes remaining. At this time, Nasr fell to 4s behind in third.

#01 Cadillac Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac V-Series.R: Renger van der Zande, Sebastien Bourdais, Scott Dixon (Photo by: Jake Galstad / Motorsport Images)

Ellis’s lead in GTD became unsafe as Antonio Fuoco’s No. 47 Ferrari 296 GT3 clawed to within six tenths of a second with 13 minutes remaining.

Back at GTP, Deletraz continued to stalk Bourdais and remained within 0.4s of the leader and appeared to be stronger under braking.

Bourdais came under heavy attack approaching traffic from Deletraz as they went side-by-side through traffic and into Turn 10 with eight minutes to go.

The other battles in LMP2, GTD Pro and GTD remained the same, but it was the GTP battle that continued to tighten up as Deletraz and Bourdais came together and continued to make contact over the next several turns. The two exchanged contact multiple times as Deletraz pulled off a double move and completed the pass in Turn 10 with less than five minutes to go.

Bourdais attempted to fight back but the chance was stalled as he came up on traffic in the form of Hawkworth, which allowed Deletraz to pull a gap of 0.7s.

As Deletraz continued to push through traffic, it was now Bourdais clawing back in the fight to pull within 0.5s on the penultimate lap.

The Victors

Deletraz took the white flag with 1.2s up on Bourdais, Nasr remains a distant third at over 7s behind.

And the thriller belonged to Acura, Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti, and Deletraz as he took the checkered flag over Bourdais. Nasr took the final step on the podium, ahead of De Phillippi in fourth.

Zilisch maintained his composure and outlasted Jensen and Paul Di Resta (United Autosports USA) to claim the LMP2 class win.

The GTD Pro class went to Hawksworth, who bested Serra Iron Lynx’s Mirko Bortolotti. Ellis collected the GTD win over Fuoco and Wright Motorsports’Elliott Skeer.

1 J. TaylorL. DeletrazC. HertaWAYNE TAYLOR RACING WITH ANDRETTI 40 Acura ARX-06 333


2 R. van der ZandeS. BourdaisS. DixonCADILLAC RACING 01 Cadillac V-Series.R 333



0.891 14  
3 D. CameronF. NasrM. CampbellPORSCHE PENSKE MOTORSPORT 7 Porsche 963 333



8.007 15  
4 C. de PhillippiN. YellolyM. MartinBMW M TEAM RLL 25 BMW M Hybrid V8 333



3.158 13  
5 R. TaylorJ. BarbosaB. HartleyWAYNE TAYLOR RACING WITH ANDRETTI 10 Acura ARX-06 333



1.342 14  
6 J. KrohnP. EngA. FarfusBMW M TEAM RLL 24 BMW M Hybrid V8 333



15.040 16  
7 M. CairoliA. CaldarelliR. GrosjeanLAMBORGHINI IRON LYNX 63 Lamborghini SC63 333



0.063 14  
8 G. BruniA. PicarielloJ. AndlauerPROTON COMPETITION 5 Porsche 963 333



16.306 15  
9 N. TandyM. JaminetF. MakowieckiPORSCHE PENSKE MOTORSPORT 6 Porsche 963 331

2 laps

10 D. MerrimanR. Dalziel
18 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

11 S. ThomasM. Jensen
11 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

12 D. GoldburgP. di Resta
22 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

13 L. WillseyJ. BarbosaJ. EdgarSEAN CREECH MOTORSPORT 33 Ligier JS P217 330

3 laps

14 G. RobinsonF. FragaJ. BurdonRILEY 74 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

15 J. SmiechowskiN. BoulleT. DillmannINTER EUROPOL BY PR1 MATHIASEN MOTORSPORTS 52 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

16 M. JakobsenH. HedmanR. LindhDRAGONSPEED 81 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

17 D. Andersen
S. Lucas
20 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

18 G. KurtzC. BraunT. SoweryCROWDSTRIKE RACING BY APR 04 ORECA 07 330

3 laps

19 B. KeatingN. PinoB. HanleyUNITED AUTOSPORTS USA 2 ORECA 07 329

4 laps

20 J. HawksworthB. BarnicoatK. KirkwoodVASSER SULLIVAN 14 Lexus RC F GT3 316

17 laps

21 D. SerraD. RigonJ. CaladoRISI COMPETIZIONE 62 Ferrari 296 GT3 316

17 laps

F. Perera
J. PepperM. BortolottiIRON LYNX
19 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2 316

17 laps

23 B. SellersM. SnowN. VerhagenPAUL MILLER RACING 1 BMW M4 GT3 316

17 laps

24 R. GunnA. RiberasM. FarnbacherHEART OF RACING TEAM 23 Aston Martin Vantage GT3 Evo 316

17 laps

25 C. SchiavoniM. CressoniL. PulciniIRON LYNX 60 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2 316

17 laps

26 H. TincknellM. RockenfellerC. MiesFORD MULTIMATIC MOTORSPORTS 64 Ford Mustang GT3 316

17 laps

27 J. HandD. MullerF. VervischFORD MULTIMATIC MOTORSPORTS 65 Ford Mustang GT3 316

17 laps

28 L. Heinrich
S. Priaulx
M. ChristensenAO RACING
77 Porsche 911 GT3 R (992) 316

17 laps

29 R. WardP. EllisI. DontjeWINWARD RACING 57 Mercedes AMG GT3 314

19 laps

30 R. LacorteG. SernagiottoA. FuocoCETILAR RACING 47 Ferrari 296 GT3 314

19 laps

A. Adelson
120 Porsche 911 GT3 R (992) 314

19 laps

32 R. De AngelisZ. RobichonI. JamesHEART OF RACING TEAM 27 Aston Martin Vantage GT3 Evo 314

19 laps

33 M. GoikhbergL. SpinelliD. DeFrancescoFORTE RACING 78 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2 314

19 laps

34 R. FoleyP. Gallagher
96 BMW M4 GT3 314

19 laps

35 B. IribeF. SchandorffO. MillroyINCEPTION RACING 70 McLaren 720S GT3 EVO 314

19 laps

36 J. AndrettiG. ChavesS. HargroveANDRETTI MOTORSPORTS 43 Porsche 911 GT3 R (992) 314

19 laps

37 O. FidaniM. BellL. KernAWA 13 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R GTD 314

19 laps

38 J. PotterA. LallyS. PumpellyMAGNUS RACING 44 Aston Martin Vantage GT3 Evo 314

19 laps

M. Franco
A. CostaC. SbirrazzuoliCONQUEST RACING
34 Ferrari 296 GT3 314

19 laps

K. Li
A. FjordbachK. BachlerMDK MOTORSPORTS
86 Porsche 911 GT3 R (992) 314

19 laps

41 F. MontecalvoP. ThompsonA. TelitzVASSER SULLIVAN 12 Lexus RC F GT3 314

19 laps

42 A. GarciaA. SimsD. JuncadellaCORVETTE RACING BY PRATT MILLER MOTORSPORTS 3 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 GT3.R 313

20 laps

43 O. Triarsi
C. Scardina
023 Ferrari 296 GT3 313

20 laps

44 P. HyettP. ChatinM. BrabhamAO RACING 99 ORECA 07 313

20 laps

45 T. MilnerN. CatsburgE. BamberCORVETTE RACING BY PRATT MILLER MOTORSPORTS 4 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 GT3.R 307

26 laps

46 M. KirchhoferO. JarvisJ. HinchcliffePFAFF MOTORSPORTS 9 McLaren 720S GT3 EVO 293

40 laps

47 K. MarcelliD. Formal
45 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2 292

41 laps

48 R. Hardwick
G. Levorato
55 Ford Mustang GT3 291

42 laps

49 J. FaranoM. DinanC. EastwoodTOWER MOTORSPORTS 8 ORECA 07 247

86 laps

S. Monk
66 Acura NSX GT3 233

100 laps

51 S. YolucR. AndradeS. AndrewsLONE STAR RACING 80 Mercedes AMG GT3 218

115 laps

52 P. DeraniJ. AitkenT. BlomqvistWHELEN CADILLAC RACING 31 Cadillac V-Series.R 210

123 laps

53 S. MannF. HeriauM. MolinaAF CORSE 21 Ferrari 296 GT3 197

136 laps

54 T. van der HelmR. WestbrookP. HansonJDC/MILLER MOTORSPORTS 85 Porsche 963 178

155 laps

55 R. FreyM. GattingS. BovyIRON DAMES 83 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2 128

205 laps

56 L. Perez CompancN. NielsenL. WadouxRICHARD MILLE AF CORSE 88 ORECA 07 65

268 laps

57 M. SkeenM. GrenierK. KochKORTHOFF/PRESTON MOTORSPORTS 32 Mercedes AMG GT3 16

317 laps

58 A. Mantella
N. Varrone
T. MerrillAWA
17 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R GTD 2

331 laps





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