The Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R finished fourth in today’s running of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen.
The race played out similar to practice and qualifying as the four Cadillac DPi-V.R cars pursued the Acura and Mazda prototypes for six hours. The No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R managed to take the endurance points by leading a few laps at the half point of the race. As the race progressed at Watkins Glen International Raceway a late race yellow, with 63 minutes remaining, bunched up the field. The seven DPi car field dove for pit lane to take fuel. Hoping for more yellow laps the race went green with 37 minutes to go. With no additional yellows it quickly became a fuel saving race for the Cadillac foursome. Running out of fuel on the last lap Pipo Derani was able to nearly coast the Whelen Engineering Cadillac across the finish line to be classified fourth as the top finishing Cadillac with teammates Felipe Nasr and Mike Conway.
“We had all of the ups and downs today,” Nasr said. “We fell back and then we got the lead at one point. We ran out of fuel [heading into the pit stop]. The domino effect from that was when I entered pit lane, I couldn’t down shift the gears, so I came in too fast. We got a drive through [penalty] and went to last. We were in contention for a podium, but then it was a fuel race to the end. It’s not the cleanest race we expected. We’ve got to do a better job for this coming weekend.”
Kamui Kobayashi had the final stint for teammates Jimmie Johnson and Simon Pagenaud in the No. 48 Ally Cadillac DPi-V.R. The Japanese driver had contact with the 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R on the last lap as their car sputtered on gas sending Kevin Magnussen into the gravel. The incident cost Kobayashi a penalty classifying the car in fifth place.
“It was an exciting race,” Johnson said. “We had quite a few things to overcome. We had some trouble with the hot temps in the cabin affecting a few different systems on the car. There were a few wild moments for all three drivers in traffic. I think Kamui ended up in the wall at one point. But thankfully, it was nothing major. At the end of the race, it really came down to fuel strategy. Unfortunately, we were at the back of the line. With everybody saving fuel and the way the cautions fell, we really couldn’t go racing for a better position. We ended up in P4 because some people ran out of fuel. I think our P4 result is under review right now. The No. 01 car ran out of fuel in front of Kamui and Kamui ran into the back of him. Now, it’s up to the stewards to determine if it was avoidable contact or not.”
Kevin Magnussen and Renger van der Zande showed speed all weekend in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R. As the race went into the final segment following the yellow Magnussen was the closer and managing fuel. He had his mirrors full of Kobayshi the last lap, the car sputtered and he had contact with the Japanese driver which send the Dane into the gravel trap.
“You don’t know how it plays out and it played out pretty bad for us,” van der Zande said. “We need to regroup and see what happened. At the end we had the fastest car, we did the fastest lap time. I felt we had a good shot at it, speed wise. We didn’t get it done today. We will move forward and come back on Friday to race again here.”
“Our strategy was actually really good as we made our way to the late stages of the race,” Vautier said. “Unfortunately, we got that penalty which took us out of contention or a top four or five. It was a frustrating race, but it will just make us want more for next weekend.”
Cadillac IMSA Watkins Glen finish results:
4. No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R, Felipe Nasr, Pipo Derani, Mike Conway
5. No. 48 Ally Cadillac DPi-V.R, Jimmie Johnson, Simon Pagenaud, Kamui Kobayashi
6. No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing DPi-V.R, Renger Van Der Zande, Kevin Magnussen,
7. No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R, Tristan Vautier, Loic Duval, Sebastien Bourdais
The teams will stay on in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York and return to The Glen for the WeatherTech 240 to run on Friday, July 2 at 6:10 p.m. ET.
Source. Kyle Chura/Cadillac Racing/Photo. Richard Prince