In a 24-hour race, like the The Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona, contact between race cars is almost inevitable. When it happens, it might sting, but if no one is hurt and the machines can return to the race, well, that's racing. What no one ever expects, accept maybe in the movies, is to get taken out by their own teammate. Unfortunately, that's exactly what happened to No. 911 (one of the two Porsche factory team cars contesting the race) when it was collected by the No. 912 RSR after an off-track excursion near Turn One.
How The Collision Happened
At 11 hours and 10 minutes in the race the No. 007 Aston Martin and the No. 911 Porsche (driven by Marc Lieb) came together over the curbing near Turn One. As a result of the contact, Earl Bamber, in the No. 912, needed to take evasive action across the wet grass. As he slid out of the grass and back onto the track he hit the No. 911 broadside causing significant damage to both cars.
Fortunately, neither of the drivers were injured. The 911s, however, were a different story.
- The No. 911 had to take a ride on a flat bed back and be brought back to the garage area where the Porsche pit crew worked a near miracle to get it back on the track. In need of a full front suspension replacement and a new oil tank, the team was forced to remove both the engine and the transmission to effect repairs. The fact that is made it back on track is amazing. The fact that it still finished the race and did as well as it did is truly a miracle.
- The No. 912 was able to limp back to the pit box where it was repaired. However, by the time it returned to the race Porsche was down by 27 laps.
For me, what makes this more heartbreaking than anything else is that both factory 911s were clearly contenders in their class, challenging for the lead multiple times during the first half of the race.
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