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IMSA Watkins Glen

Porsche stripped of Watkins Glen win, BMW inherits landmark victory

The race-winning Porsche in Sunday’s IMSA SportsCar Championship Six Hours of The Glen has been stripped of victory after a technical infraction was discovered in post-race scrutineering.

#6: Porsche Penske Motorsports, Porsche 963, GTP: Mathieu Jaminet, Nick Tandy, Celebration

The #6 Porsche Penske Motorsport 963 of Nick Tandy and Mathieu Jaminet scored a dramatic overall victory at Watkins Glen after passing the #25 BMW M Team RLL BMW M Hybrid V8 of Nick Yelloly and Connor De Phillippi with just six minutes of the six-hour race remaining.

That’s the way the cars finished as a full-course caution came out a lap later, due to Bill Auberlen rolling his Turner Motorsports BMW M4 GTD Car on the approach to the final corner, and the race finished under yellow.

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But following post-race inspection, the #6 Porsche was found to have a skid block measuring less than the permitted minimum thickness and was moved to the rear of the GTP finishing order, elevating the #25 BMW to victory.

UPDATE: Porsche released a statement on Sunday night: “Following post-race inspection at Watkins Glen International, IMSA has penalized the No. 6 entry in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen citing that the front skid wear of the No. 6 Porsche 963 was less than one millimeter outside the legal tolerance.

“The rear skid wear was noted to be well within the legal tolerance. Porsche Penske Motorsport plans to collect all of the data and follow the protest procedures.”

The Porsche is the second IMSA GTP winner to be found to have been in breach of the rules in the five races so far this year in the new LMDh era.

The Meyer Shank Racing Acura that won the Daytona 24 Hours was allowed to keep its victory in the record books, however, as its tire pressure data manipulation was only discovered following post-race tech inspection – after the results had been declared official – but did suffer a large points deduction.

#25: BMW M Team RLL, BMW M Hybrid V8, GTP: Connor De Phillippi, Nick Yelloly

#25: BMW M Team RLL, BMW M Hybrid V8, GTP: Connor De Phillippi, Nick Yelloly

Photo by: Michael L. Levitt / Motorsport Images

The Porsche’s exclusion means a first GTP victory for BMW since 1986, when the late John Andretti and Davy Jones triumphed in the McLaren North America-run BMW M Team March 86G. It means all four marques participating in the new-for-2023 hybrid-electrified GTP class in its debut season have now won in the first five races.

The Action Express Racing Cadillac V-Series.R of Pipo Derani, Alex Sims and Jack Aitken was elevated to second, ahead of Colin Braun and Tom Blomqvist in the MSR Acura.

JDC Miller MotorSports’ customer Porsche 963, driven by Mike Rockenfeller and Tijmen van der Helm, rises to fourth from the Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac of Sebastien Bourdais and Renger van der Zande.

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