Nick Tandy: “They say that the best victories come from the toughest races”

Porsche came out on top in the GT Le Mans class
Credit: Michael L. Levitt / LAT Images

In another great advert for the GT Le Mans class, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring was a closely fought affair, and it was the Porsche GT Team that came out on top, the #911 of Nick Tandy, Patrick Pilet and Frédéric Makowiecki denying the #25 BMW Team RLL outfit by just over six seconds.

Tandy, a former 24 Hours of Le Mans victor, admitted it was one of the toughest tests on both car and driver on Saturday, but the Porsche 911 RSR was perfect the whole way through, and nothing was going to deny them the win.

“They say that the best victories come from the toughest races,” said Tandy.  “Today was such a race. We didn’t have the slightest problem over the entire distance and that was the key to our success.

“My last two stints were incredibly intense, especially the duels with the Ferrari and the BMW. We switched to new Michelin tyres during the last pit stop – after that, nothing could hold us back.”

For Pilet, winning Sebring ticked off another historic race the Frenchman has claimed victory in, and he admitted that winning was far from the teams mind after Qualifying, and only the determination of the team made it possible.

“This win was missing from my collection,” said Pilet.  “It was a great team effort. The pit crew didn’t make one mistake and our strategy was perfect. To celebrate this achievement with my friends Nick and Fred is incredible.

“After the qualifying, victory seemed a long way off. But when you’re determined to achieve something and you go for it, you can do it. This race is proof of that.”

Makowiecki feels his success at Sebring was amongst the greatest of his career, and it is made all the better by being one of his favourite, if not toughest, races on the calendar.

“That was one of my greatest successes,” said Makowiecki.  “Sebring is my all-time favorite race in the USA and we knew that we’d only have a chance if we as a team didn’t make any mistakes.

“It was a really tough race, but that makes this victory all the more special.”