Sebring: Porsche Motorsport race report

Maassen, Luhr, Alex Job Make History as Central Florida-Based Porsche Team Finishes One-Two in GR at Mobil 1 Twleve Hours Of Sebring SEBRING -- March 20 -- Sascha Maassen, from Raeren, Belgium, though that he would be a third, support driver...

Maassen, Luhr, Alex Job Make History as Central Florida-Based Porsche Team Finishes One-Two in GR at Mobil 1 Twleve Hours Of Sebring

SEBRING -- March 20 -- Sascha Maassen, from Raeren, Belgium, though that he would be a third, support driver this weekend for the Tavares, Florida's Alex Job Racing, but Maassen ended up with the most driving time as the #23 Alex Job Racing McKenna Porsche m ail2web Porsche 911 GT3 RSR scored a two-lap GT win at the 52nd running of the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.

"It's Jorg Bergmeister and Timo Bernhard's year to shine in this car," said Maassen, who won the American Le Mans Series championship two years in a row, "but both Timo and Jorg were sick this week, and with Jorg being very ill all day today, I had to driv e extra stints. It was work, but it's always fun to win a classic race like Sebring," said Maassen.

Jorg Bergmeister/Timo Bernhard/Sascha Maassen started the race from the pole, and led the majority of laps, but felt constant pressure from teammates Lucas Luhr, Marc Lieb and Romain Dumas, who started their Alex Job Racing Porsche at the back of the pack because of a qualifying tech violation. Luhr brought the car up to the front of the field very quickly, and took the lead briefly during his first stint, but the other car always answered the challenge.

Although Luhr missed his chance to break Bob Holbert's record from the '60s with five class wins in a row, Maassen tied Holbert and Luhr with four class wins in a row. Lucas and Romain also had to drive extra stints as Marc Lieb fell ill during the day.

The only GT team which entered only two drivers, the White Lightning/Petersen Motorsports Porsche of David Murry/Craig Stanton, which fell behind early after a pit violation penalty, came back to finish third. In the end, however, Murry had to hold off th e Flying Lizard Porsche 911 GT3 RSR of Johannes van Overbeek/John Fogarty/Darren Law. The Flying Lizard Porsche, which led for most of the first hour before a faulty battery caused an extended pit stop early in hour two, finished fourth after a late brake pad and rotor change in hour #11 cost them third place. Jon Fogarty, the 2002 Formula Atlantic champion, chopped nearly a lap off the White Lightning lead at the end, but time ran out and the "Lizards" fell 26 seconds short.

The BAM! Porsche of Mike Rockenfeller/Leo Hindery/Peter Baron overcame several shunts, including one that shattered their windshield and another that crunched their rear end. Rockenfeller, the 20 year-old German Porsche UPS Junior driver, drove more than seven of the 12-hour event to finish fifth.

Sixth went to the J3 Racing Porsche 911 GT3 RSR of Justin Jackson/Brian Cunningham/Tim Sudgen, who overcame an early stunt with a P1 prototype for their best Le Mans finish ever.

Right behind the Risi Ferrari was the #66 The Racer's Group Porsche of Cort Wagner/Kelly Collins/Patrick Long, which qualified second, but lost the shift linkage early in the event, and spent 45 minutes in the pits.  That stop put the car back in 17th plac
e, and the team did well to crack the top ten.  Their Racer's Group teammates, Ian Donaldson/Gregor Fisken/Piers Masarati, finished ninth in the #68 Porsche.

-porsche-

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Jon Fogarty , David Murry , Sascha Maassen , Kelly Collins , Lucas Luhr , Leo Hindery , Peter Baron , Darren Law , Jörg Bergmeister , Timo Bernhard , Patrick Long , Johannes van Overbeek , Brian Cunningham , Marc Lieb , Craig Stanton , Romain Dumas , Piers Masarati , Gregor Fisken , Ian Donaldson , Justin Jackson , Mike Rockenfeller , Alex Job , Cort Wagner
Teams Porsche Team , Alex Job Racing