Sebring 12-Hour Race: Aitken Heads Cadillac 1-2 Position After Four Hours

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Sebring 12h: Aitken leads Cadillac 1-2 after four hours

Sebastien Bourdais took the lead just as the second hour unfolded, managing to keep the No. 31 Cadillac V-Series.R of Pipo Derani within a gap ranging from 0.7 to 1.5 seconds.

However, the race saw its fair share of drama. Jack Hawksworth of Vasser Sullivan had to pit from the GTD Pro lead early in the second hour due to an issue. His troubles compounded when he received a drive-through penalty for contact with a crew member while leaving the pit box.

This turn of events allowed Alexander Sims, piloting Pratt Miller Motorsports’ No. 3 Corvette Z06 GT3.R, to assume the lead in his class.

Around 35 minutes into the second hour, AF Corse’s No. 88 ORECA LMP2 07, driven by Luis Perez Companc, suffered a major off at Turn 1, resulting in damage to the car. Meanwhile, Madison Snow, driving Paul Miller Racing’s No. 1 BMW M4 GT3, seized the opportunity to overtake Alexander Sims and claim the lead in GTD Pro.

Bourdais made a pit stop with 13 minutes remaining in the second hour, handing over the reins to Scott Dixon, a six-time IndyCar champion. Reflecting on his stint, Bourdais remarked, “Pipo was kind of holding us in a tempo that was fairly comfortable… The 01 Cadillac is pretty strong and Cadillac in general, so hopefully it holds true the whole time.”

Sebring 12-Hour Race: Aitken Heads Cadillac 1-2 Position After Four Hours
Sebring 12-Hour Race: Aitken Heads Cadillac 1-2 Position After Four Hours (Credits: Motorsport)

Derani also pitted soon after, giving way to Aitken. A fierce battle ensued between Aitken and Dixon, with Dixon ultimately regaining the lead for Chip Ganassi Racing.

The second hour witnessed its second caution as the No. 8 LMP2 machine for Tower Motorsports, driven by Michael Dinan, lost control and crashed into the tire barriers, necessitating a pause in the race.

As the race resumed in the third hour, Dixon led the pack, followed by Aitken and Brendon Hartley in Wayne Taylor Racing’s No. 10 Acura ARX-06. Despite some minor shuffling in positions, Dixon maintained his lead comfortably.

The third hour saw another caution period after AF Corse’s No. 88 experienced another off-track excursion, resulting in Lilou Wadoux exiting the race. Pit stops during this period saw Aitken leapfrog Dixon but both were now trailing the No. 7 Penske Porsche 963 of Dane Cameron.

Aitken managed to pass Cameron shortly after the restart, establishing a significant lead. Dixon also made a move to secure second place. However, the race was not without its challenges, as the No. 18 Era Motorsport machine, now under Dwight Merriman’s control, encountered difficulties off-track.

As the fourth hour approached, the battle intensified in various classes, with close competition in GTD Pro and GTD. With the end of the four-hour mark looming, pit strategies and on-track maneuvers became critical for teams aiming to secure a favorable position.

Dana Phio

By Dana Phio

From the sound of engines to the spin of wheels, I love the excitement of driving. I really enjoy cars and bikes, and I'm here to share that passion. Daxstreet helps me keep going, connecting me with people who feel the same way. It's like finding friends for life.

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