It was a little like pushing the rock up hill for the #45 Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, but Patrick Long (USA) and Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) ground out a fourth-place finish in the GT class in American Le Mans Series event at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course this afternoon. Long and Bergmeister’s car also won the Michelin Green X Challenge for GT cars.
Bergmeister and Long, who were leading the driver points going into the event, held on to their lead with the ten points they earned for fourth, but it was a hard day at the office.
“Our car was quick, and we could catch our competition in the corners, but we didn’t have the power to go buy anyone on the straights,” said Bergmeister, who drove the last stint and almost overtook the Corvettes and BMWs in front of him several times.
“It was about track position today, and starting eighth, we had to move up one position at a time, relying on our strategy and mistake-free driving to get to the top. Today, we moved from eighth to fourth, but two lucky BMW stops just before yellows, and some bad traffic didn’t help us. This championship will be like this at every event – it will come down to end,” said Long.
Long and Bergmeister have 103 points to lead the class, followed by the Melo/Bruni Ferrai (95 points) and the Auberlen/Milner BMW (92 points). In the manufacturers championship, BMW and Ferrari are tied with 105 points, and Porsche has 103 points.
Other Porsche GT finishers included the Patrick Pilet (France)/Seth Neiman (USA) Flying Lizard Motorsports entry, which came in seventh, and the Bryan Sellers (USA)/Wolf Henzler (Germany) Team Falken Tire Porsche, which finished eighth.
In the GT Challenge class, Jeroen Bleekemolen (Netherlands) and Tim Pappas (USA) recovered from an early-race shunt to score the victory in their Black Swan Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car and take the class points lead, despite the fact they missed the first race. Second was the James Sofronas/Bret Curtis GMG Porsche.