2016 WeatherTech USCC: Canadian Tire Motorsport Park race report
Porsche North America Racing continued to battle against a difficult Balance of Performance in the WeatherTech United SportsCar Championship as the two factory 911 RSRs struggled to sixth and eighth in the latest round at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
After starting the season showing good pace at Daytona and Sebring, the no. 911 Porsche 911 RSR of Nick Tandy and Patrick Pilet was able to win around the streets of Long Beach in round four of this year’s championship. However, that win now feels like a lifetime ago.
Hindered by BoP changes that favoured the turbocharged cars from Ford, Ferrari and BMW, Porsche have found themselves lagging behind in the GTLM class of late, finishing ninth and tenth last time out at Watkins Glen.
Ahead of the latest race north of the border at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (formerly known as Mosport), IMSA announced further adjustments designed to slow the dominant Ford GTs and help the pace of the naturally aspirated racers from Porsche and Corvette.
While the Corvette C7.Rs were afforded a bigger air restrictor though (among other changes that allowed them to battle the Fords for victory at CTMP), Porsche’s token 10kg weight break was nothing more than lip service as the 911 RSR was already running as light as it could ahead of round six of the 2016 season.
Qualifying at the Canadian circuit continued to prove that the 2016-spec RSR isn’t on a level playing field as the no. 912 machine lined up eighth and the no. 911 car in ninth, with both Porsches more than a second slower than the pole-sitting Chevrolet (and half a second slower than the next GTLM competitor).
Come the two-hour, 40-minute race (where Tandy and Pilet triumphed last year in the no. 911 Porsche), Porsche’s pace didn’t improve, the Anglo-French race-winning duo running home a lonely eighth, kept off the bottom of the class results thanks only to problems for the no. 100 BMW M6.
Bamber and Makowiecki, Porsche’s best hope for retaining its USCC drivers’ and teams’ titles, faired little better. Clever strategy and slick pitwork with under an hour to go vaulted the latter into second but the no. 912’s lack of pace saw it plummet back through the field, eventually finishing sixth.
The result sees Porsche drop from second to third in the manufacturers’ battle as Ford (taking its third consecutive USCC win) leapfrogged Weissach. In the teams’ and drivers’ standings, the no. 912 crew has now fallen further away in fourth, the gap to the top of the table extending from 19 to 26 points.
For all the latest Porsche motorsport news and race reports, make sure you check out our dedicated motorsport section now.