Three different potential GT Le Mans driving champions could have emerged from this year’s Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda.
As it turned out, the class had three different champions anyway once this year’s 10-hour enduro wrapped the inaugural 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship season.
Kuno Wittmer secured the driver’s championship, but driving the No. 91 SRT Motorsports Dodge Viper SRT GTS-R rather than the sister No. 93, which he had driven all season.
It was a result of mixed emotions for Wittmer. Wittmer’s No. 91, which he shared with Marc Goossens and Ryan Hunter-Reay, had a near flawless race, but didn’t have the outright pace of the Porsche 911 RSRs that wound up finishing 1-2.
Still, third place was enough for Wittmer to clinch the title by five points (331-326), unofficially, over Jonathan Bomarito. The pair won twice together at Indianapolis and Circuit of the Americas, Dodge’s only two victories this season.
The split strategy of dividing Wittmer and Bomarito for Petit, who had been full-season co-drivers in the No. 93, did pay dividends in the driver’s championship.
The No. 93, driven by Bomarito, Dominik Farnbacher and Rob Bell, ended sixth and still secured the GTLM team’s championship, unofficially by nine points (326-317) over the No. 3 Corvette Racing C7.R. Antonio Garcia ended eighth in the car he shared with Jan Magnussen and Ryan Briscoe.
Neither Dodge nor Chevrolet was able to bring home the manufacturer’s championship in GTLM. That honor went to Porsche, courtesy of that 1-2 finish delivered by Team Falken Tire and the CORE autosport-run Porsche North America No. 912 in the race.
Porsche and Dodge entered the race tied on 308, and Porsche took the title by five, 343-338, after Saturday’s race.
GT Daytona saw Dane Cameron extend what was a four-point lead to an unofficial margin of victory of nine (304-295) over Leh Keen and Cooper MacNeil.
Cameron and regular co-driver Markus Palttala won a season-high four races in GTD in the No. 94 Turner Motorsport BMW Z4 GT3. Palttala only missed out on the title after missing Indianapolis.
The GTD team championship mirrored the driver’s championship, with Turner also winning that.
Alex Job Racing’s pair of Keen and MacNeil in the No. 22 WeatherTech Porsche 911 GT America played a key role in delivering Porsche the GTD manufacturer’s championship, giving Porsche a clean sweep of those two categories in GT.
Although Keen and MacNeil failed to win a race, the pair was extraordinarily consistent with 10 top-10 finishes in 11 races – the same number achieved by Turner’s No. 94 car.
Unofficially, and somewhat bizarrely, Porsche edged BMW in GTD by the same number (5 points) and the exact same points total (343-338) as its margin over Dodge in GTLM.