The No. 2 Tequila Patrón ESM Honda Ligier JS P2 returned to victory lane with a second consecutive triumph in the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) WeatherTech SportsCar Championship on Sunday at the Sebring IntSernational Raceway in Sebring, Florida.
The race car took the top honors in the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona in January this year.
Pipo Derani captured the checkered flag in a final sprint in of the 64th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida. With five minutes and 45 seconds to go, Derani passed Dane Cameron in the No. 31 Whelen Engineering/Team Fox Corvette DP from Action Express Racing to take the lead and the eventual victory, sweeping Daytona and Sebring in back-to-back rounds of the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup.
“What a tough race this was,” said Derani. “We had some contact, some spins, and moving our way back to the front was just unbelievable. In the end, I knew we had a great car, and new tires. But with only 10 to 15 minutes to go and still be in fourth was difficult to believe that we were going to make it. God had an eye on me and everything I executed was perfect.”
Cameron took second place in the No. 31 Corvette DP along with co-drivers Eric Curran and Scott Pruett. After leading the first two Patrón Endurance Cup segments, the sister Action Express No. 5 Mustang Sampling Corvette finished third, driven by Christian Fittipaldi, Joao Barbosa and Filipe Albuquerque.
Fittipaldi led at the four-hour mark, picking up the five-point bonus for the first Patrón Endurance Cup segment. Barbosa had control at the eight-hour mark, bringing home another five points the No. 5 team earning the maximum 10-point bonus for leading both segments.
The next rounds of the Patrón Endurance Cup is the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen at Watkins Glen International in July and Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta in October.