Derani leads Tequila Patron team to 12 Hours of Sebring win
SEBRING, Fla. (AP) Pipo Derani helped Tequila Patron ESM win its second consecutive endurance race by driving to a thrilling win Saturday at the Twelve Hours of Sebring.
Driving a Ligier JS P2 Honda, the 22-year-old Brazilian passed one Action Express Racing with seven minutes remaining and then got by leader Dane Cameron, in the second Action Express car, on the next lap. Derani beat Cameron and the No. 31 Corvette team by 2.926 seconds.
The win follows January's victory at the prestigious Rolex 24 at Daytona, where the team used the same lineup of Derani, Scott Sharp, Johannes van Overbeek and Ed Brown.
The team is the first since Doran/Moretti Racing in 1998 to sweep both Florida endurance races.
The race was stopped for nearly three hours during an early portion of the event because of poor weather.
A full-course caution set up Derani's frantic 20-minute drive. He passed the No. 81 Oreca-Nissan of Nicolas Lapierre on the restart and then ran down the two Action Express entries.
Corvette Racing also got a victory when the No. 4 team of Tommy Milner, Oliver Gavin and Marcel Fassler took the GTLM class. Milner beat the No. 25 BMW M6 team of Dirk Werner, Bruno Spengler and Bill Auberlen by three seconds to sweep the Florida races in their class.
Ferrari won the GT Daytona class when Jeff Segal, Alessandro Balzan and Christina Nielsen won from the pole in the car's debut race.
The Prototype Challenge class was won by Colin Braun and CORE Autosport. The lineup of Braun, Jon Bennett and Mark Wilkins beat PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports for the class victory.