One of the predominant GT Le Mans storylines entering the Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park centered on BMW’s impressive qualifying effort but, after 160 minutes of racing, attention turned back to Porsche with the manufacturer earring its fifth IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship victory out of six attempts so far this season.
- Results: 2019 Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix
The pole-sitting No. 24 BMW M8 GTE fielded by BMW Team RLL and driven by Jesse Krohn dominated the class for the opening 49 laps before giving way to the No. 912 Porsche 911 RSR fielded by the Porsche GT Team. From there, Earl Bamber — who had replaced Laurens Vanthoor in the car on Lap 38 — only relinquished the lead during pit stops.
With the win, Porsche extended its WeatherTech Championship streak to five consecutive victories split between the Nos. 912 and 911. The team has only lost at the Daytona International Speedway in 2019.
The BMW qualified by Krohn and pedaled to the finish by John Edwards ended the race in the second position. The 1.208-second gap between first and second was the tightest margin of victory out of the four classes competing on the 2.459-mile circuit.
Nick Tandy, behind the wheel of the No. 911 Porsche at the checkered flag, put up a fight to give his team a sweep of the top two positions but ended up settling for a third-place result, 2.177 seconds behind the victorious sister car which started fifth.
Connor De Phillippi brought the second BMW home in fourth ahead of Chip Ganassi Racing’s pair of Ford GTs in the fifth and sixth positions. Corvette Racing struggled with pit stops and brought up the rear of the eight-car class with all cars on the lead lap after the race’s conclusion was broken up by two caution periods and one red flag for a major single-car DPi incident.
Auberlen Extends Win Total With CTMP Victory
Celebrating his 420th start in BMW machinery, Bill Auberlen drove the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 to the GT Daytona victory after a single stint by pole winner Robby Foley.
The lone BMW in the all-GT3 class was strong throughout the race, challenged only by the championship-leading No. 86 Acura NSX GT3 fielded by Meyer Shank Racing that won both the pole and the race last time out at Watkins Glen. Trent Hindman contacted the BMW in a pass attempt at Moss Corner in the early going in the first and only serious attempt to swipe the lead.
At the conclusion of the race, the BMW and Acura were separated by just over two seconds with the second-place finish ensuring an acceptable points day for Mario Farnbacher and co-driver Hindman. Behind the top two finishers, the No. 12 Lexus RC F GT3 of Townsend Bell was a further 1.2 seconds back in the third position.
A pair of Porsche 911 GT3 Rs — fielded by Park Place Motorsports and Canadian team Pfaff Motorsports — completed the top five, making it four manufacturers in the group separated by four seconds.
Ten of the 11 running GTD cars finished on the class’ lead lap. The No. 14 Lexus of Richard Heistand and Jack Hawksworth was taken behind the wall multiple times after contact on track and finished 12th in class, scored 37 laps down.
Next up for the two GT classes is the Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park. The standard-duration race will take place July 20 with live streaming via NBC Sports.