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Nissan Flawless In IMSA Road America Win

Winning Nissan Dpi at Road America driven by Luis Felipe Derani and Johannes van Overbeek. [John Wiedemann Photo]

Winning Nissan Dpi at Road America driven by Luis Felipe Derani and Johannes van Overbeek. [John Wiedemann Photo]

Elkhart Lake, WI – The Nissan DPi team scored their first victory in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Series at Road America in the Continental Tire Road Race Showcase.

Luis Felipe “Pipo” Derani brought home the win in the Nissan that teammate Johannes van Overbeek started in the two hour and fourty minute race. The victory ended Cadillac’s season long win streak.

van Overbeek started fifth and was involved in constant battles on the track as he drove up through the field as the pole winning Wayne Taylor Racing Cadillac DPi driven by Ricky and Jordan Taylor dominated the first hour and forty-eight minutes of the race.

When John Edwards GTLM BMW couldn’t make it to the pits, the caution flag flew and Jordan Taylor pitted, giving the overall lead of the race to the Oreca LMP2 driven by Stephen Simpson.

Simpson continued with the race lead chased by the Nissan Dpi, now driven by Derani.

With twenty-six minutes remaining in the race, Andy Lally brought out the final caution flag after contacting the wall. During the caution, Simpson brought the Oreca to the pits and the overall lead was assumed by Derani.

Derani held off Jordan Taylor over the remaining green flag laps of the race and took the checkered flag for his fourth IMSA win by 2.356 seconds ahead of the Cadillac.

“It’s been a long season for us. We started very late, and to be honest, nobody thought within the team we’d be able to challenge for victories after the tough start we had”, said Durani. “It shows to be able to challenge for victories now how hard we’ve been working behind the scenes. I never stopped believing in this team. We worked really hard together today, it was flawless.”

Patricio O’Ward and hometown racer James French dominated the PC class with their seventh win in the Performance Tech Motorsports ORECA FLM09.

Asked about his hometown Road America victory, French explained, “It feels pretty excellent to be honest. This is my 6th time in this car here and no victories up to this point. Now it’s great to finally check it off.”

GTLM polesitter Dirk Mueller and Joey Hand captured their class victory in the Ford GT with a tight battle after the final restart with the Porsche GT team of Gianmaria Bruni and Laurens.

“I was on full tilt. that was all I had from me”, explained Hand regarding the final laps. “We got a little breathing room with the PC there at the end, I got some pick-up on my tires and I was a little excited. My watch even went into water mode I was sweating so much. It’s a tough situation when you’re leading because you don’t want to be ‘that guy’ and drive it off while you’re winning. I knew if I could just stay good, he wouldn’t be able to pass me there at the end.”

In GTD action the class polesitter Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 driven by Jesse Krohn and Jens Klingmann took home the class victory, Krohn’s first IMSA win.

“It’s great. It’s my 6th race in IMSA so I’ve been waiting for the win to happen”, said Krohn regarding his first class win. “We’ve had a great car all year. Every time I race with Turner [Motorsports] I know I’ll have a car capable of winning the race. So I knew if I waited I’d be able to make it up here soon enough.”

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