12H: Bentley finally claims victory at Bathurst 12H after five years of trying

12H: Bentley finally claims victory at Bathurst 12H after five years of trying

Feb 2nd 2020 – After five years of trying, close-calls and heartbreak, Bentley has finally won at Bathurst.

The storied British brand triumphed in another dramatic, record-breaking Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour at Mount Panorama; breaking not only their own Mount Panorama drought but quite literally bringing the rain down as well.

Driven by French drivers Jules Gounon, Maxime Soulet and South African Jordan Pepper, the No 7 Bentley Team M Sport entry started eleventh but headed a majority of the race – only to get to the final hour in front as a major storm front passed through the Bathurst region.

The rain threatened for hours and finally poured down at the exact moment the Green Bentley crossed the line to win the race; a perfect scenario for a drought-breaking performance.

Bentley become the sixth different winner from the last six years on the Mountain; the second consecutive brand to win the 12-Hour for the first time and also become part of Mount Panorama history on a record-setting day.

At 314 laps, the race was the longest 12-Hour on record and included the longest period of racing (4 hours, 10 minutes) without a Safety Car in event history.

It’s also the lowest starting position – 11th – for a race winning car in 18 editions of the Bathurst 12 Hour.

The 59 Racing McLaren 720 GT3 driven by Ben Barnicoat, Alvaro Parente and Tom Blomqvist finished second while Triple Eight Race Engineering scored a dramatic podium finish thanks to the efforts of Shane van Gisbergen, Maximilian Goetz and Jamie Whincup.

Both cars were elevated up one position from their original finishing position following the checkered flag after the Gruppe M Mercedes – that had crossed the line in second – was penalised for a pit stop infringement following the conclusion of the race.

Bentley’s remarkable win came despite a near-miss close to the finish when the car suffered a puncture moments before pitting for its final stop of the race.

“It was an amazing race,” Gounon said.

“It was really, really tense at the end because I had a puncture before the last stint so the team was really scared after the puncture of (Raffaele) Marciello.

“It was a matter of trying to keep the car away from the kerbs, the debris, so it was tense still; not flat out but trying to manage the problem. It’s amazing for us, amazing for M-Sport, I think the new car showed potential last year and we’ve never had a big win except Paul Ricard, so it’s a big one for us.

“You have those days where everything comes together for you; you see the rain dropping after I passed the line. Thanks to the racing gods I can say it was a good one. When you get a puncture while leading in the last hour at Bathurst, it’s not a nice moment but we’re standing here now.”

McLaren scored their second podium finish on the Mountain thanks to the efforts of 59Racing, the 720S GT3 starring on its Bathurst debut.

Having started on the front row, the car in the hands of Ben Barnicoat was an early leader and topped the charts several times throughout the day.

“Immediately I could feel the car was quick – I was able to get past Patrick Pilet, caught Maxi (Buhk), I saw my chance, took it and it came close but I got it right,” Barnicoat said.

“That’s what we get paid for… not when you get it wrong! The pace was very good, we mixed up the strategy a bit compared to what we were thinking but in the end it all worked out.”

Triple Eight backed up fourth in the 2019 12-Hour and second in the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 last October with third in the 2020 12-Hour, with their Mercedes AMG GT3 a contender all day.

Bentley’s remarkable win came despite a near-miss close to the finish when the car suffered a puncture moments before pitting for its final stop of the race.

“I think it’s stepped up our team and we’re still learning about this car and GT racing.  Jamie and myself are still learning the car, especially at this track where we’re used to the V8,” van Gisbergen said

“It was a cool finish, having a race with Matty (Campbell). He was trying to put me off, flashing the lights so I put my hazards on to put him off, got him back a bit. It’s a nice surprise to get a podium out of it.”

Defending champion Matt Campbell hustled his Porsche 911 GT3 to fourth position with co-drivers Patrick Pilet and Mathieu Jaminet, while a late pit stop for a puncture relegated day-long contenders Craft Bamboo / Black Falcon and drivers Maro Engel, Luca Stolz and YelmerBuurman to fifth place.

Grove Racing won the Pro Am class in their Porsche; Stephen Grove, Brenton Grove and Ben Barker finishing 10th outright.

59 Racing backed up their outright podium with a class victory in the Silver category after a storming drive by Dominic Storey, Martin Kodricand Fraser Ross – the combination finishing eighth overall.

Aaron Cameron, Broc Feeney and Nick Percat finished 15th outright and won the Invitational class while Darren Jorgensen, Brett Strom and Danny van Dongen won the GT4 category in their BMW M4 GT4.

23 of the 34 starters finished the race while seven cars finished on the lead lap, equal to the existing record.

A record three-day attendance of 43,111 attended the 2020 event; an increase of nearly 2,000 people on the previous record despite record-breaking temperatures in the high 30s for a majority of the weekend.

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6 hrs ago

F1

We stand with all those fighting against racism in any form ... See Less

We stand with all those fighting against racism in any form

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We stand with #F1 do you always have to reminded of true responsibility by the Champ #LewisHamilton Proudly black/colored❤️👌🙏👀

Really F1? And yet they held a Bahrain Grand Prix literally while the locals were protesting and being oppressed. One post created by your PR team while you’ve done nothing for real change seems quite meaningless. Do better.

Hamilton was on the receiving end of racism during the pre season tests at Catalunya in 2008, so he knows what it’s like firsthand. Good job he spoke out, especially with what happened in Minneapolis last week

Took a bit of criticism from your best driver for you to say something about it as a whole. We do this together.

Will F1 really take a stand and not hold events in countries with systemic human rights violations? I doubt it.

So much racism in F1. I can’t wait for the day a person of color drives the best car on the grid, makes the most money, and becomes a multiple world champion... oh wait... never mind 🙄

Whatever..day late..dollar short..only speaking up after prodding from Lewis...PR lip service...

Humans are imperfect and forever will be. I doubt you can oppose and eradicate it. Each and every individual need to decide to not let these evil things from inside to take control of him. Once all the protests are over it will silence down only for it to come back again. How soon another protest will happen doesn't matter. How capable EACH and EVERY human is from getting controlled from the evil within is the real challenge. The lack of self control is the greatest human imperfection.

Let's be real, had Lewis Hamilton not called them out. They wouldn't have said anything.

Nice to finally hear from the American owners of F1. Been left to Lewis to lead the charge again.

You missed the caveat... *yet we’ll still continue to do business & hold races in Russia, China, Bahrain, Vietnam & Abu Dhabi as well as for pushing for a deal with Saudi Arabia. Because human rights & oppression doesn’t bother us when there’s $ to be made.

Let's fight against police brutality also! Why none entity can write it explicitly?

What about all of the roits, and looting. Nothing will be said about it? People’s businesses ruined by this. But nothing will be said about it?

We have to fight against this racism together. And also against the police brutality.

Lewis Hamilton is the voice of F1

Should have done this before Lewis accused the whole paddock of racism

What is this about?

I hope this isn't supporting the beating of innocent people and the burning/looting of innocent peoples businesses!

they're not gonna buy tickets or subscriptions, bro.

This is better I can support this message forever !!! Every other company charity and celebrity that are jumping on the band wagon can just do one ! Well done F1

This is the first time F1 has a “political” view on things. Next: terminate the contracts with China?

Well done Lewis for forcing this reaction and well done to F1 for putting it out!

Looks as though LH got his way...whining works

Hypocrisy by F1. Took Lewis Hamilton to highlight the fact. Maybe F1 will boycott countries with human rights issues or will you continue pleasing the money men?

"We stand with all those fighting against racism in any form" ❤🧡💛💚💙💜🤎🖤🤍

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6 hrs ago

MotoGP

A #MotoGP legend returned to claim victory while new names stepped up in #Moto2 and #Moto3! 🙌

Enjoy the highlights from the #VirtualBritishGP! 🇬🇧
... See Less

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If nothing else it's clever graphics. 👍

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99 le meilleur !!! 😈

💝💖

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8 hrs ago

MotoGP

3⃣0⃣ questions ⁉️ in 6⃣0⃣ seconds!⏱️

Find out more about Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS8038">#Mike Di Meglio Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Mike Di Meglio! ⬇️
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9 hrs ago

MotoGP

Shoulder barging, late braking and (in some cases) a total disregard for track limits! 😂

The #VirtualBritishGP re-wrote the rule book on overtaking! 🎮
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Hopefully some real action soon 🙏

MotoGP game is not at the level of the F1 . Why?

Terrible physics engine lol awful game

for 2020 the graphics and gameplay are pretty shit I have to say

Hahaha exceed track limits big time. Its not off-roading hahaha xxx

If there will be any races this year I bet you Spain only

Ride is much more realistic this looks piss poor

C’est fluidifier c’est impressionnant 🤣🤣🤣

Fabio still can’t find a way to win 😂😂😂

Bumper GP

Lag lag lag 😂😂

Carsten Lauerer das ist ja im Vergleich zu deiner Fahrweise absolut aus dem Lehrbuch... brenn

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10 hrs ago

24H Series

The Hankook 24H PORTIMAO will be broadcast live on our Youtube and Facebook channel. 💥

With the smallest possible team, we will make as much exciting TV as possible! 🎥

Large parts of the race will be broadcast so that everyone can enjoy racing! 🏎️💨

Are you going to watch after waiting for so long? 😀

📅 12,13 & 14 June

#thisisendurance #24HSERIES #24HSERIES2020 #motorsport #24HPORTIMAO #racing
... See Less

The Hankook 24H PORTIMAO will be broadcast live on our Youtube and Facebook channel. 💥

With the smallest possible team, we will make as much exciting TV as possible! 🎥 

Large parts of the race will be broadcast so that everyone can enjoy racing! 🏎️💨

Are you going to watch after waiting for so long? 😀

📅 12,13 & 14 June 

#thisisendurance #24HSERIES #24HSERIES2020 #motorsport #24HPORTIMAO #racing

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Definitely will be watching!

I m go there to see in live 🤗😁

Oh que oui

Sam Dejonghe die dame lacht nogal mooi naar u 👌

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