The #33 TF Aston Martin Vantage of Felipe Fraga, Dylan Pereira and Ben Keating ultimately completed second, a lap behind Nicklas Nielsen, Alessio Rovera and Francois Perrodo’s AF Corse Ferrari after an in depth battle that lasted for a lot of the race.
TF had recovered from Fraga being circled on the primary lap of inexperienced flag working to take the lead by the tip of Fraga’s opening treble stint and, after handing over to Pereira, gained a minute on the sphere within the fourth hour when the remainder of the pack was cut up behind a special security automotive following Marcos Gomes’s crash at Indianapolis.
The 2020 class-winning squad responded by plugging in Bronze driver Keating sooner than deliberate for a single stint and had cycled again to Fraga in hour seven when the Brazilian hit particles on the strategy to the primary Mulsanne Chicane, puncturing each rear tyres.
This got here moments after Mission 1 Porsche driver Egidio Perfetti additionally hit particles and crashed out, however Fraga managed to maintain the automotive pointing straight – nosing gently into the tyres earlier than returning slowly to the pits.
Making a second cease – the place the workforce made a precautionary change of the diffuser – simply 4 laps after Fraga had climbed aboard meant TF was offset towards the #83 Ferrari and having led 46 laps earlier than the incident, it solely did so for one more 16 laps throughout the rest of the race.
Requested if he thought-about it a race that had received away from the workforce, Ferrier advised Autosport: “I don’t assume you may ever say you assume you need to have received a 24-hour race, however we had the bundle to win it and we have been in the appropriate place to have the ability to do it.
“We have been dissatisfied that we couldn’t struggle a bit extra close to the tip and take it to them and I believe we might have finished that if it hadn’t been for the puncture.
“I suppose that was the massive turning level for us within the race, the puncture and the lack of time attempting to get it again very slowly.”
TF Sport celebrates its second place in GTE Am
Photograph by: Nick Dungan / Motorsport Images
Ferrier mentioned that the Ferrari’s superior stint lengths could have resulted in the identical consequence even with out the puncture, as #83 may run 15-lap stints relative to the 14 of the Aston.
“Would we’ve got maintained that security automotive hole [without the puncture]? Who is aware of,” he mentioned.
“Very often whenever you’re in entrance issues go your manner so possibly, however the guys within the #83 had numerous tempo over the evening so I believe they’d’ve fairly simply been again with us.
“They might all the time do 15 laps on gas at any tempo and we may solely do 14, in order that made an enormous distinction with the place they may go along with technique in comparison with us.
“I believe that in all probability performed of their favour massively.”
Ferrier added that he was “very impressed” by Le Mans rookie Pereira, who claimed the quickest lap of the category with a 3m49.707s on Sunday morning.
“He dealt with himself very well for a younger driver that’s not received enormous endurance racing expertise,” mentioned Ferrier.
“At Le Mans whenever you’re younger and ballsy and ready to danger rather a lot, you may flip a really quick laptime when the monitor is at temperature and it’s rubbered in and also you’re low on gas, however to be honest to him he didn’t make any errors in any respect.”