Bruno Senna, Julien Canal and Nicolas Prost fought back from a 40-second deficit to title-rival Jackie Chan DC Racing to win Saturday’s Six Hours of Bahrain and clinch the LMP2 title for Vaillante Rebellion.
Separated by just four points heading into the Bahrain showdown, Rebellion and DC Racing entered battle in the early stages while scrapping for fourth place in class, with Senna making an early pass on Oliver Jarvis for position.
Jarvis was able to regain the position through the first round of pit stops, with the cars pitting on the same lap for a full service at quarter-distance.
Ho-Ping Tung pulled out a significant lead over silver-rated Julien Canal through the stint that followed, extending DC Racing’s advantage to 40 seconds, with the Rebellion car also receiving a five-second time penalty for causing contact with one of the Manors.
While DC Racing was able to keep the gap stable through the pit cycles that followed despite the best efforts of the sister No. 13 Rebellion entry to slow it down, the team struggled to extend its stints as far as Rebellion could, forcing it into making an additional stop across the course of the race.
After taking its ninth and final stop, the DC emerged around half a lap behind the race-leading Rebellion, which still had to make a final pit stop and was losing significant amounts of time after Senna reported a loss of power steering.
Fearing Senna would not be able to complete his stint, Rebellion prepared Prost to jump into the car, only for the Brazilian to say he would see out the race to prevent any more time being lost at the final stop.
A splash-and-dash from the Rebellion pit crew brought Senna back out on-track with a 20-second advantage, albeit with older tires than the chasing Jarvis.
Jarvis was able to take out chunks of time with every lap that passed, but ran out of laps to catch Senna, falling 10 seconds short at the checkered flag.
Senna and Canal finished the season 11 point clear in the drivers’ championship, with the accompanying Prost ending the year third overall by virtue of missing the Nürburgring round due to a clash with the New York Formula E race.
Mathias Beche, Nelson Piquet Jr. and David Heinemeier Hansson rounded out an impressive day for Rebellion by completing the podium, with the team clinching the LMP2 teams’ title in the process with the result.
RESULTS: 6H Bahrain