• Apex Racing Team takes overall victory in the GTD class in the fourth and final race of the season.
• Jamie Fluke and Yohann Harth win the daily classification, while Alejandro Sanchez and Kevin Ellis Jr. claim the GTD title despite a time penalty.
• In the Touring Car category, overall victory goes to SimRC.
Apex Racing Team once again dominated proceedings at the finale of the IMSA Esports Michelin Global Championship and was rewarded for a virtually flawless season with the title. In the final race of the season, which was held in virtual Daytona, the team from Corby once again topped the daily classification in the GTD class – and overall victory in the series was also decided within the team’s ranks.
When the cars crossed the finish line, it looked as though Alejandro Sanchez and Kevin Ellis Jr. in the #98 Porsche 911 GT3 R would emerge victorious in the daily classification, but a time penalty meant the victory ultimately went to their team-mates Yohann Harth and Jamie Fluke in the number 97 Porsche. However, this did not change the championship standings.
In the Touring Car class, the title went to Kieran Harrison and Corentin Guinez from the SimRC team. Gaël Valero and Nicol Foggie from Apex Racing Team took the victory in Daytona.
The four Apex drivers dominated the action in the GTD class from the word go. Only after the driver changeover did the two crews briefly drop down the field, but neither wasted any time in making their way back to the front on fresh tyres.
Patrik Holzmann and Maximilian Benecke from BMW Team Redline, who crossed the finish line in third place before the aforementioned 35-second penalty for Ellis and Sanchez, came home a full 19 seconds behind the two leaders, who could only be separated when Race Control intervened at the end of the race. However, that did little to dampen the joy at winning the daily classification and the title.
It was a much closer and more exciting affair in the Touring Cars, with R8G Esports and SimRC embroiled in a fiercely-competitive duel for the title. They were joined in a three-way battle for the race win by Apex Racing Team, who refused to give an inch at the iconic American circuit.
In the end, it was ART who again took victory in the Touring Car class and, in doing so, denied R8G Esports some valuable points. This was to prove crucial, as R8G Esports eventually ended the four-race season just behind SimRC.
Reactions from the overall winners:
Kevin Ellis Jr. (Apex Racing Team, overall winner): “We did not expect it to go the way it did. We were expecting a hectic start. After the pit stop, we were pretty calm, even when we had to do the overtakes.”
Alejandro Sanchez (Apex Racing Team, overall winner): “I am really happy. One of the best decisions I have ever made was to join the team. This win was definitely one of the highlights of the year. I think we really deserve this, because we put a lot of effort into it.”
Kieran Harrison (SimRC, winner Touring Car class): “It was scary towards the end of the race. I think R8G Esports were trying to slow us down as much as possible. In the end, I was happy for Apex Racing Team to lead the race, as it meant R8G had to chase them. The overwhelming emotion on the line was relief.”
Corentin Guinez (SimRC, winner Touring Car class): “I was stressed and biting my nails after we changed drivers. I just tried to give Kieran some information to help him a bit. I guess it was even more stressful for him, but I am very happy that we got it done”
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