Porsche’s GTLM champs fight through a tough finale

Image by Jake Galstad/LAT

Porsche’s GTLM champs fight through a tough finale


Porsche’s GTLM champs fight through a tough finale


While Risi Competizione was stealing the limelight at Petit Le Mans in GTLM with its Ferrari, the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season champions in the category — the No. 912 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR pair of Earl Bamber and Laurens Vanthoor — had a difficult day. Teaming with endurance driver Mathieu Jaminet, the car — carrying a special commemorative livery inspired by Bob Akin’s 1986 Porsche 962 — ran mid-pack for the majority of the race and in the closing minutes was involved in a spin following contact with the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Racing Cadillac DPi that wound up the overall winner.

“We fought our hardest at the end of the race there for a podium and it didn’t quite come off,” Bamber said. “So that was a tough day. We managed to do what we did all season and be right there and be in the points, make no mistakes all day long and score points.

However, after the checkered flag, Bamber and Vanthoor were focusing on the brighter points of a season in which they took three victories and four additional podium results.

“Tomorrow it’ll definitely sink in. I think it is definitely one of the toughest championships to win here,” Bamber added. “Everyone’s at the highest level and I’m super thrilled to take the championship home for Porsche.”

“I joined Porsche three years ago,” added Vanthoor. “I wanted to go to America. It was kind of a dream to race here at one point and race for Porsche. When I came here, I basically didn’t know anything. I didn’t know the teams, the tracks, the rules, not the car, nothing. For me to come away now with the championship in the books is something I’ll be really proud of.”