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Nielsen: LMP2 Win Makes for “Even Better” Past Week

Nicklas Nielsen returns to top step of podium seven days after being victorious in 24 Hours of Le Mans…

Photo: Mike Levitt/IMSA

Nicklas Nielsen said getting his maiden IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship class win just seven days after claiming overall honors in the 24 Hours of Le Mans has made the past week “even better.”

The Ferrari factory driver teamed with Lilou Wadoux and Luis Perez-Companc to take LMP2 class honors in their No. 88 AF Corse Oreca 07 Gibson in Sunday’s Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen.

It came after a challenging start to the trio’s campaign in the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona and Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.

Wadoux said: “We had an issue in Daytona. In Sebring we had a little contact and after fire in the car. It’s good to finish the race and to be in the first place.

“Today was not an easy race. [It was] tricky conditions. But Luis and Nicklas did an amazing job. The car was amazing. For me, I’m super happy to win here.”

Nielsen was one of seven drivers that were fresh off either overall or class victory in the French endurance classic.

“I’m obviously very, very happy,” Nielsen said. “It’s been a good week, a good couple of weeks I would say. I’m happy to make my maiden win in IMSA, as well. [It’s] a super competitive championship.

“Like Lilou said, I think we have been fast and competitive the whole IMSA season, but we’ve just been a bit unlucky. Obviously with the contact and then the fire in the car in Sebring, that didn’t really help us. But I’m really happy to bounce back here.

“Coming with a fresh victory from Le Mans obviously makes this even better.

“I think Lilou said that Luis and I did a fantastic job, but she did a mega job as well. She was on track in very difficult conditions, and she managed that very well. I think it’s fully deserved that she finally got her victory, as well, here.”

Nielsen said the timing of the rain, as well as a late-race accident for Felipe Fraga while battling with the Dane, played into their benefit.

“We were actually a bit lucky with the first big shower we had, when we had the safety car replaced by the red flag,” he said. “We actually started the refueling, then it started to rain heavily in the pit lane. We decided to go on the wets.

“On the other hand, once the restart happened, it was more or less already dry again.

“I would say we were lucky and then we were a bit unlucky again. Pretty much everyone had to [change] their tires and fuel. There were a few cars on slicks, but they had to box for fuel.

“In the end it was like a hard fight. I think it was Colin Braun and Felipe [Fraga]. Racing here is always tough. But we were a bit lucky. I think we did a good job, as well.

“It was the combination of the two that got us the victory today.”

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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