The 2015 63rd Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring is halfway home, with a new overall leader and another team hitting a milestone in TUDOR United SportsCar Championship competition.
Scott Dixon leads overall in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Riley-Ford from Joao Barbosa in the No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette DP, with the race now back to green following its fifth full-course caution of the day due to Marc Drumwright’s spin and stall in the No. 16 BAR1 Motorsports PC car exiting Turn 7.
Barbosa was in the car when Action Express’ No. 5 car completed Lap 149, which gave the team a full 10,000 miles complete in the series – every single lap and mile to date since the TUDOR Championship launched at the 2014 Rolex 24 at Daytona.
“It’s a tremendous accomplishment for our team,” said team owner Bob Johnson. “We couldn’t think of a better place to achieve this milestone than historic Sebring Raceway. Before this was one of the greatest racetracks in America, it served our country training the airborne heroes of World War II.
“Now that we’ve accomplished the mileage milestone, we’ve got another milestone we would like to accomplish at 10:40 PM tonight with one of our two entries.”
Other class leaders at the six-hour mark included Tom Kimber-Smith (No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports, PC), Patrick Pilet (No. 911 Porsche North America Porsche 911 RSR, GTLM) and Cooper MacNeil (No. 22 Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT America, GTD).
In both GTLM and GTD, the top seven cars in class are on the lead lap.
In the last two hours, Jon Fogarty, Conor Daly and Olivier Pla turned in particularly impressive drives.
Fogarty enjoyed a trouble-free stint to run fourth in the No. 2 Tequila Patron ESM HPD ARX-03b and Daly brought the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports entry back to second in PC.
Pla regained one of the four laps lost in the No. 57 Krohn Racing Ligier JS P2 Judd. The overall polesitter ran a series of 1:54 laps in the heat of the afternoon.
Meanwhile the No. 25 BMW Team RLL BMW Z4 GTE went behind the wall for a front cradle replacement, and the No. 44 Magnus Racing Porsche 911 GT America had an odd accident exiting Turn 16 when it appeared something broke on the right front of the car, pitching John Potter into the inside retaining wall.
Both SpeedSource Mazdas have been retired, the No. 70 car with a loss of drive belt while running fifth in Prototype, while the No. 07 car has been withdrawn with overheating issues.
Also of note, the first round of Patron Endurance Cup points were handed out at the four-hour mark. Unofficially, Action Express Racing moves into the lead in the team standings.