Porsche seeks second straight win at ‘gripping’ Lime Rock

July 19, 2018

Porsche seeks second straight win at ‘gripping’ Lime Rock

July 19, 2018

Last year, Porsche claimed the first worldwide win for its new 911 RSR at Lime Rock Park.

The new car, which places the engine in front of the rear axle, premiered at the 2017 Rolex 24 at Daytona. It nearly won on debut. However it took until Round 7 of the season in late July to finally break through.

Patrick Pilet and Dirk Werner shared the winning No. 911 Porsche to score the win in the GT-class only race for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. It capped off a perfect weekend for Porsche, since Gianmaria Bruni scored the pole before the race in the sister car.

Pilet seeks a repeat this weekend, now co-driving with Nick Tandy. The Frenchman described the challenge of the fast, 1.5-mile circuit.

“I’m expecting a gripping race at Lime Rock,” Pilet said. “The course is narrow and twisty and it sometimes reminds me of a go-kart track. The cars bunch close together, which makes it interesting for the fans. We did very well last year with our 911 RSR and I have no reason to think we can’t do it again this year.”

While Tandy and Pilet are sixth in the GT Le Mans class standings, they are still only 15 points off the lead.

Teammates Earl Bamber and Laurens Vanthoor sit one point ahead in fifth, 14 back of the class-leading Ford GT pair of Ryan Briscoe and Richard Westbrook. Vanthoor and Bruni finished second here last year.

“Our victory last year underlined that the racetrack suits us,” the Belgian said. “However, Lime Rock is no easy race. The laps are very short and you have to be extremely careful to maneuver through the heavy traffic unscathed. Lime Rock marks the start of the critical phase of the championship. That makes it all the more important to earn decent points.”

Porsche is nine points behind Ford in the manufacturer’s championship. They’ll look to close that gap this weekend at a track they believe suits the car well.

“Overtaking is difficult at Lime Rock, hence it’s important to start from as far up the grid as possible. A good qualifying result is half the battle on this narrow circuit – as we saw last year with our win,” said Pascal Zurlinden, Director GT Factory Motorsport.

IMSA’s Round 7 from Lime Rock airs Saturday at 4 p.m. ET on FS1.

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