Paul Miller Racing saw both the joy and the angst of the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring on Saturday. The team started the 12-hour enduro from 13th on the GTD grid, led the class twice and were in podium contention for much of the race. Bryce Miller (Summit, N.J.), Bryan Sellers (Atlanta) and Madison Snow (Lehi, Utah) weathered a two-hour race stoppage, heavy rain and track traffic to finish sixth in class. Their No. 48 Castrol/UIS Lamborghini Huracán GT3 was the top-finishing Lamborghini.
The team started the final half of the race third in GTD with Snow at the wheel. He moved to second before handing off to Sellers at 6h29. Sellers took the GTD lead just past the eight-hour mark, then pitted for a driver change to Miller. After a problem restarting the car, Miller dropped to 12th, but worked back up to fifth during a tough stint. Sellers drove the final stint, earning three positions from ninth after the pitstop to finish sixth. His final lap was the team’s fastest – two minutes 3.625 seconds on the 3.74-mile Sebring International Raceway road course in Sebring, Florida.
After a 24-hour race and a 12-hour race, the team will now focus on a two-hour sprint race, set for Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in California on May 1.
Bryce Miller: “We judged that we had a top-five car, so our finishing result is in line with our expectations. Bryan and Madison are an awesome team and it’s great to be surrounded by guys like that. I’m really proud of the team; they had some awesome pitstops that really vaulted us. Our straight-line speed was significantly down to some of the other manufacturers and overtaking on track was really tough work. So to get those positions in the pits was awesome. Overall, I’m really happy and pleased with everyone’s effort.”Bryan Sellers: “We were hoping for a top-five and kind of hoping we could get a podium, and I think we were strong enough. We had some adversity that we had to come back from – just normal 12-hour stuff – but to be able to fight at the end shows the character of the team not to give up. We elected to go a little bit towards a rain setup, thinking it was going to be a complete washout. At the end of the night, it probably hurt us a bit. But it also kept us alive in the middle of the day.”
Bryan Sellers: “We were hoping for a top-five and kind of hoping we could get a podium, and I think we were strong enough. We had some adversity that we had to come back from – just normal 12-hour stuff – but to be able to fight at the end shows the character of the team not to give up. We elected to go a little bit towards a rain setup, thinking it was going to be a complete washout. At the end of the night, it probably hurt us a bit. But it also kept us alive in the middle of the day.”
Madison Snow: “It was a good 12-hour race, but since I got out of the car the first time, I haven’t been back in. So I was just supporting Bryce and Bryan, and they did a great job out there. It’s difficult to set a car up for all the different weather conditions, changing throughout the race, so sometimes we’re really good and sometimes we don’t quite have the pace of everybody else out there. It doesn’t look like we had it this race, so we’ll have to come to Laguna and see if we can do better.”
time driver GTD pos. action
6h29 change 2 pit – Snow out, Sellers in, rain tires, fuel
6h55 Sellers 4 pit – dry tires, fuel
8h05 1 class leader
8h10 change 1 pit – Sellers out, Miller in, tires, fuel
8h25 Miller 11 pit – fuel
9h15 7 pit – fuel, gained five positions
10h17 change 5 pit – Miller out, Sellers in, tires, fuel
10h45 Sellers 9 pit – fuel
11h09 8 pit – tires, fuel
Paul Miller Racing is a leading GTD team in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. The team placed second in the 2014 IMSA series GTD standings and third in 2015.