Jan Magnussen and Antonio Garcia extended their TUDOR United SportsCar Championship points lead with their fourth consecutive GT Le Mans class victory in Sunday’s Mobil 1 Sportscar Grand Prix.
Garcia took the No. 3 Corvette C7.R to the win ahead of the pole-sitting No. 93 SRT Motorsports Dodge Viper SRT GTS-R in second, which led early in the hands of Kuno Wittmer but lost ground during an off-course excursion late in the opening hour.
It put Magnussen out front and in control for the remainder of the race, despite a late charge by both of the Vipers, in what turned into another dominant performance for the bow-tie.
Wittmer and co-driver Jonathan Bomarito came home 11 seconds behind in second after the close escape, which saw the Canadian’s Viper dive through the grass at Moss Corner to avoid the No. 56 BMW.
The No. 91 Viper of Dominik Farnbacher and Marc Goossens made a charge through the field to complete the podium in third, a reversal of the team’s finishing positions at Watkins Glen.
The top-five in GTLM was rounded out by John Edwards and Dirk Mueller in the No. 56 BMW Team RLL BMW Z4 GTE and the No. 911 Porsche North America entry driven by Nick Tandy and Richard Lietz.
GT Daytona honors went down to the wire, with Jeroen Bleekemolen making a late-race pass on the No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT America of Kevin Estre for the class win.
The Dutchman, who made up more than 11 seconds in the final 30 minutes, wheeled his No. 33 Riley Motorsports Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R around Estre with less than one minute to go, benefitting from GT traffic that held up the Porsche in the closing stages.
It marked Bleekemolen and co-driver Ben Keating’s first win of the season and the first for the Riley-built, GT3-based Viper in IMSA competition.
Dane Cameron and Markus Palttala rebounded from a controversial pit lane penalty for a wheel nut outside of its pit box for a third place result in their Turner Motorsport BMW Z4 GT3. Palttala led early, while Cameron was also in contention for the win prior to the penalty.
The No. 81 GB Autosport Porsche of Damien Faulkner and Ben Barker recorded a season-best fourth, with Leh Keen and Cooper MacNeil’s Alex Job Racing Porsche completing the top-five in class.
Despite a 13th place finish in class after a challenging race, AIM Autosport’s Townsend Bell and Bill Sweedler still hold onto the championship lead, but only 3 points ahead of the Magnus Racing duo of Andy Lally and John Potter.
Porsche, meanwhile, take over the lead in the manufacturer’s title race in GTD.
RESULTS: Mobil 1 Sportscar Grand Prix