LONG BEACH – Sebastien Bourdais definitely took the road to victory on Saturday.
An initial brush with the wall at turn 11 put Bourdais on the path to posting another disastrous Daytona Prototype International result. He fell from first to last in his class, more than 20 seconds behind the leader.
But at the end of the 100-minute, 73-lap race, Bourdais had his first win of the season at IMSA WeatherTech, teaming with Renger van der Zande to win by 3.761 seconds.
Alex Lynn and Earl Bamber were second in another car owned by Chip Ganassi. Tristan Vautier and Richard Westbrook’s JDC Miller Motorsports duo completed the Cadillac podium.
“It was a magic car. It was a great weekend for the team. Today we were a very good combination,” Bourdais said. “It takes a wonderful car to do that and make that kind of comeback. I don’t think I breathed much for 30 minutes.”
As he tried to turn a slower car on lap 6, Bourdais used the inside line on turn 11 and lost grip, his Cadillac slid helplessly toward the concrete wall. To make matters worse, he struggled to start his car and then stopped while trying to get back into the race.
Then he received the bad news from his crew and had no hope.
“I was told (on the radio) that I was 21 seconds behind. I thought it was over, “Bourdais said.
Bourdais couldn’t be more upset with himself. He had made a similar move countless times during his running career at the Long Beach Acura Grand Prix and has never had a rub against the wall like this.
“After that,” he said, “it was burning because I was so crazy.”
Ten laps after his collision with the wall, he had taken 10 seconds off his disadvantage. On lap 24, he ran second, just 3.56 seconds behind. On lap 30, the lead was again his.
When he pitted to fill and deliver the car to van der Zande, Bourdais had a 4.87 second lead.
Bourdais said he fell into a trance as he returned to the front.
“I was trying to come up with something that shouldn’t be done,” Bourdais said.
What made his furious front-loading load even more impressive was that he used as much fuel as his teammate while carrying his furious load across the field, which means van der Zande would not have to take it easy to save fuel. to take the Cadillac House.
Bourdais believes that all the experience he gained by winning three consecutive IndyCar races here between 2005 and 2007.
“You have to save fuel on those cars too and keep up the good pace,” Bourdais said.
This result is a welcome relief for Bourdais and his team after finishing last in class in the first two races of the season. A faulty gearbox wiped out Bourdais’ chances last month in Sebring, Florida.
Van der Zande said he was amazed at what he saw “an angry Seb”.
“It’s not easy going down this track,” van der Zande said. “I have no idea how he did it.”
Max Gordon is still three years away from getting his driver’s license, but on Saturday he won one of the best all-terrain racing icon in the Super Truck Speed / UTV Stadium race in Long Beach.
The guy he beat to win the first race of his career was his father.
Robby Gordon tried to chase the boy in the last three laps, but finished in 1.16 seconds.
“You’re going to see him back here one day driving an IndyCar, you can count on that,” Robby Gordon said. “I’m very proud of him. This kid is going to be dangerous.”
Kay van Berlo dominated the first race of the weekend for the Porsche Carrera Cup, leading the 22 laps to beat Parker Thompson in the Pro Class by 1,035 seconds. TJ Fischer, Michael McCann and Dimitri Dimakos completed the top five in the 40-minute run.
Alan Metni won the Pro-Am class and finished 11th overall.
Another race for the identical GT3s will be held at 4:20 pm on Sunday.
Bourdais leads wild IMSA DPi comeback – Press Telegram Source link Bourdais leads wild IMSA DPi comeback – Press Telegram