Audi won its first TUDOR United SportsCar Championship race Saturday in the Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda with Paul Miller Racing breaking through for its first victory in the 10-hour endurance classic with drivers Christopher Haase, Matt Bell and Bryce Miller in the No. 48 Audi R8 LMS.
After winning a series-high four races in 2014, Turner Motorsport won the GT Daytona (GTD) team championship with Dane Cameron taking the driver title. Markus Palttala played an integral role in Turner Motorsport’s championship, sharing all four victories with Cameron, but missed the Brickyard Grand Prix at Indianapolis Motor Speedway due to scheduling conflict.
“It’s just an amazing feeling to not only get my first sports car championship, but to get it in the inaugural year of the TUDOR Championship and be the first person is even more special,” said Cameron. “The last hour was probably the longest hour of my life. You just hear all kinds of crazy noises. They were counting me down about every 10 minutes. You wouldn’t believe how long 10 minutes could feel.”
The race came down to an intense final few minutes for the Paul Miller Racing team as Haase was forced to defend the No. 58 Dempsey Racing Porsche 911 GT America of Jan Heylen on a restart with seven minutes remaining. Haase beat Heylen to the stripe by 3.121 seconds for the race win.
“The partnership [with Audi] has been a successful one,” said Bryce Miller. “We’ve really enjoyed working with them. They’ve lent us a tremendous amount of support to accelerate our learning curve on the car going back to the beginning of the season at Daytona. It really helped to build the foundation for us, the platform from which we could spring from.”
While the Petit Le Mans came down to the final minutes in GTD, the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup did not.
AIM Autosport and Ferrari clinched the team and manufacturer championships in the race’s opening four-hour segment with Bill Sweedler and Townsend Bell taking the driver championships as soon as they hit the required two hours, 45 minutes of drive time needed to score points.