ESPORTS: A Sebring Stunner

Published on
26 Mar 2024
Est. reading time
4 Min

Williams Esports dominates and writes history in the 2024 iRacing Sebring 12h

We will have to move back to 2019 to see the last victory of Williams Esports at Sebring 12h (GTE Class). For this weekend’s race, we not only had a new livery update, but also a huge update from iRacing which all sim racing fans have been waiting for a long time; rain and dynamic weather.
Williams took part in the race with a total of 8 teams between Pro & Academy:
x4 GT3
x2 GTP
x2 LMP2
The race began with an immediate challenge, the rain poured from the green flag up until the end of the first hour. A tough obstacle for all drivers to face, dodging past others with minimal vision and all cars catching slides whilst the pack were bunched up.
In the first 90 minutes, it was a relatively quiet and steady paced start, with the grid maintaining their individual gaps between each other and focusing on just keeping the car on track as the weather dried up and the track conditions constantly changing with new lines, damp apexes and puddles scattered across multiple areas of the circuit.
After around two hours, Williams led all 3 classes of the race in dry conditions, but knowing that the rain would come back soon enough to test our skills once again, we had to make the most of that time on track before the weather switched and that we did! Whilst the GT3’s were defending the lead, our chillblast GTP would continue to gain multiple tenths and build upon their already large margin at the front with the BenQ chasing down P3 and the chillblast LMP2, piloted by Carl Jansson and Kenneth Gulbrandsen, would already find themselves in a safe position for the win and were already close to the backmarkers.
With 4 hours passed, the GT3’s began to struggle, and the first Academy car crashed out at turn 1 after hitting an invisible puddle and spinning off. Whilst technical problems cost their fellow teammates greatly, the BenQ suffered a disconnection issue and the Chillblast would have a double game crash, dropping them close to the back of the field at which point they were P1 and P3 beforehand.
Not long after, the rain would return and pour at the halfway mark. This would be no challenge to the BenQ LMDH of Alx Spetz fighting for P3 and the Chillblast LMP2 of Carl Jansson (now a full 1 minute ahead of P2), who would both show off their confidence in the wet.
The racing action kicked off from here on across all classes, as the earlier disconnected BenQ GT3 now on the up again to P6; Parker White continuing to show his team’s masterful overtaking skill & ability on the slippery and risky track of Sebring.
By the 8 hour mark, the fight was on for the podium places between our BenQ LMDH and the Coanda. Alx would have to defend from this point onwards until the end; strategy playing a crucial part as rain was forecasted again for the final 20 minutes. For the Chillblast LMP2 however, our Scandinavian duo (Carl and Kenneth) had now lapped the entire LMP2 field with 4 hours still to go, a truly incredible performance.
Unfortunately during the late hours though, our 2nd academy car was involved with an incident, ending up also with a retirement after a positive run on track throughout the race. Our GT3 luck worsened and it was a difficult day for the class from a strong first half.
Will Tregurtha, a driver for the 2nd academy car, joined our live broadcast to talk about his race alongside the team – click here to watch.
As the checkered flag drew closer, the race dropped another round of challenges at the drivers late on to keep us on the edge of our seats after such an eventful day.
More technical issues for the Chillblast GT3 of Dani Lafuente and Sota Muto found them losing control of the car and hitting the wall at turn 1 with just a few hours to go, causing major damage and dropping them to P9 after battling back up to P6 for most of the 12h. Everything was thrown at them this weekend.
For the rest of the team, it was all about strategy until the end and ensuring we weren’t caught out by the fuel, thankfully however, our engineers and drivers worked together to perfectly calculate the race and completed the 12h as 2024 Winners in GTP and LMP2 with Parker White putting in a huge effort at the end to climb the BenQ GT3 up to P4!
Thank you to the whole team and all our fans for the support.
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Williams Grand Prix Engineering Limited is a company registered in England and Wales under company number 1297497. Its registered office is at Grove, Wantage, Oxfordshire, OX12 0DQ
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