Monday, Jul 9 08:10pm
AUTHOR: Simon Chapman

Puncture thwarts victory hopes for Earl Bamber

Having been in contention for the win, sixth place probably wasn’t the birthday present Earl Bamber wanted at the latest round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.


Canadian Tyre Motorsport Park played host to the Prototype, GTLM and GTD fields for the season’s midway point.


Now 28-years-old, Bamber and Porsche teammate Laurens Vanthoor had to settle for sixth in the GTLM division after the Kiwi suffered a puncture late in his stint.


Vanthoor started their Porsche 911 RSR frpm fourth and quickly got up into third place on the opening lap. As the race progressed Porsche led first and second with the Patrick Pilet/Nick Tandy no.911 ahead of the Bamber/Vanthoor no.912.


However, starter dramas as well as the puncture late into the two hours and 40 minute race put an end to their hopes.


“Laurens drove a great first stint,” Bamber said after the race.


“The first pit stop went perfectly. At one point we were in third place.


“Unfortunately a technical problem and puncture relegated us back to eighth place. I fought hard and did everything to conserve fuel, but ultimately we couldn’t gain any more ground.” 


Vanthoor echoed Bamber’s sentiments, lamenting the missed opportunity to get their second win of the season.


“I’m disappointed with the result, of course, especially since we were on first and second at times,” he said.


“Unfortunately we had a technical problem during the pit stop and then a puncture cost us additional time.


“My stint was actually very good and I managed to overtake several cars. We then tried everything but it just wasn’t possible to get ahead. Unfortunately our strategy didn’t work.”


Former Verizon IndyCar Series full-timer Ryan Briscoe won with Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Richard Westbrook in their Ford GT. The Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia and Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner pairings completed the podium for Corvette Racing.


Pilet and Tandy had managed to get as high as second as the race neared the chequered flag, but got baulked by a slower GTD car and lost two positions.


Pos Class Driver Gap
1 P united_states  Jon Bennett 
united_states  Colin Braun 
116 laps 
2 P united_states  Jordan Taylor 
netherlands  Renger van der Zande 
3 P united_states  Eric Curran 
brazil  Felipe Nasr 
4 P brazil  Christian Fittipaldi 
portugal  Filipe Albuquerque 
5 P brazil  Helio Castroneves 
united_states  Ricky Taylor 
6 P united_kingdom  Oliver Jarvis 
united_states  Tristan Nunez 
7 P canada  Mikhail Goikhberg 
south_africa  Stephen Simpson 
8 P switzerland  Simon Trummer 
united_states  Robert Alon 
9 P colombia  Gustavo Yacaman 
colombia  Sebastian Saavedra 
+2 laps 
10 GTLM australia  Ryan Briscoe 
united_kingdom  Richard Westbrook 
+4 laps 
11 GTLM denmark  Jan Magnussen 
spain  Antonio Garcia 
+4 laps 
12 GTLM united_kingdom  Oliver Gavin 
united_states  Tommy Milner 
+4 laps 
13 GTLM united_kingdom  Nick Tandy 
france  Patrick Pilet 
+4 laps 
14 GTLM united_states  Joey Hand 
germany  Dirk Müller 
+4 laps 
15 GTLM new_zealand  Earl Bamber 
belgium  Laurens Vanthoor 
+4 laps 
16 GTLM united_states  Connor de Phillippi 
united_kingdom  Alexander Sims 
+4 laps 
17 P colombia  Juan Pablo Montoya 
united_states  Dane Cameron 
+5 laps 
18 GTD netherlands  Jeroen Bleekemolen 
united_states  Ben Keating 
+9 laps 
19 GTD canada  Kyle Marcelli 
austria  Dominik Baumann 
+9 laps 
20 GTD united_states  Andy Lally 
united_states  John Potter 
+9 laps 
21 GTD united_states  Bryan Sellers 
united_states  Madison Snow 
+9 laps 
22 GTD portugal  Alvaro Parente 
united_kingdom  Katherine Legge 
+9 laps 
23 GTD united_states  Justin Marks 
united_states  Lawson Aschenbach 
+9 laps 
24 GTD denmark  David Heinemeier Hansson
united_kingdom  Jack Hawksworth 
+9 laps 
25 P united_kingdom  Harry Tincknell 
united_states  Jonathan Bomarito 
+10 laps 
26 GTD united_states  Jeff Segal 
united_states  Cooper MacNeil 
+10 laps 
27 GTD united_states  Patrick Long 
denmark  Christina Nielsen 
+10 laps 
28 GTD germany  Wolf Henzler 
united_states  Michael Schein 
+43 laps 
29 GTD united_states  Bill Auberlen 
united_states  Robby Foley 
+53 laps 
30 GTLM united_states  John Edwards 
finland  Jesse Krohn 
+55 laps 
31 P brazil  Pipo Derani 
united_kingdom  Ryan Dalziel 
+71 laps 


Photo: Porsche