Corvette factory team grabbed the record @ Seabring this weekend for class victories. Additionally, Penske and Porsche grabbed the Overall win; a first Penske, and a first for Porsche since the 1980s. Also only the third time a non-top class car took the overall win. http://canadianpress.google.com/arti...OyQrFWTW-K1mIQ
SEBRING, Fla. — Porsche ended a 20-year drought at Sebring International Raceway on Saturday, halting Audi's eight-year overall winning streak with a surprising victory in the Twelve Hours of Sebring.
Driving the Roger Penske-owned Porsche RS Spyder, Romain Dumas of France took the checkered flag 12.9 seconds ahead of the Acura ARX-01B of Adrian Fernandez and Luis Diaz, both from Mexico. Timo Bernard of Germany and Emmanuel Collard of France drove the winning Porsche with Dumas.
It was the first overall Sebring win for all three.
Third place in the season-opening American Le Mans Series race went to Butch Leitzinger of State College, Pa., who shared a Dyson Racing Porsche RS Spyder with Marino Franchitti of Scotland and Andy Lally of Dacula, Ga.
Ron Fellows of Mississauga, Ont., claimed his fourth class victory. He completed 323 laps and finished ninth overall. Tony Burgess of Toronto suffered a disappointing end to his race, retiring early with overheating problems after completing 250 laps. Burgess finished 23rd overall and fifth in the P1 prototype class.
The last overall Porsche victory at Sebring was in 1988 when Klaus Ludwig and Hans Stuck drove a factory Porsche 962 to victory, the last of 13 straight Porsche wins. Porsche increased its record to 18 overall victories in the 56-year history of the 12 Hours of Sebring.
Roger Penske became the first team owner to win the Daytona 500, Indianapolis 500 and 12 Hours of Sebring.
"Two times last year I was put in the last stint to try to catch the leaders," Dumas said. "This time, I was given a car with the lead and I managed to hold onto it. We're especially proud to give this victory to Roger Penske."
Johnny O'Connell became the career Sebring victory leader with his seventh win. O'Connell won the overall title in 1994 and Saturday's win was his sixth class victory.
The GT2 class victory went to the all-German team of Jorg Bergmeister, Wolf Henzler and Marc Lieb, who finished 13th overall in their Porsche 911 GT3 RSR and three laps ahead of Flying Lizard Motorsports sister car of Darren Law of Phoenix, Seth Neiman of San Francisco and Alex Davison of Australia.
The American Le Mans Series race was expected to be a diesel duel between Audi and Peugeot, but all three diesel-powered prototypes were beset with mechanical problems.
Peugeot dominated the first two hours but fell victim to hydraulic problems that dropped the French prototype 25 laps behind the front-running Audi R10 TDI Diesel at the halfway point.
Nicolas Minassian of France grabbed the lead on the first lap and led for 44 laps before pitting. He built a lead of up to 56 seconds aided by a stop-and-go penalty against Capello for avoidable contact with another car that landed Capello and the entire Audi Sport team a two-race probation.
Losing the overall lead for only two laps during a flurry of pit stops, Pedro Lamy of Portugal led 40 more laps in the Peugeot 908 that was making its debut in the United States before pitting with a gearbox problem related to a failing hydraulic system that cost the Peugeot 908 team 13 minutes in the pits.
Later, the Peugeot team spent another 48 minutes in the paddock working on the hydraulic system again, and when they finally rejoined the race they were 25 laps behind the Audis. The Peugeot 908 finished 12th overall and fourth in P1, 33 laps behind.
The second Audi R10 of Lucas Luhr, Mike Rockenfeller and Marco Werner, all of Germany, had turbocharger problems and finished seventh overall and second in P1 class.