Cadillac receives penalty for 24 Hours of Le Mans

The serious accident at the extended WEC race in Spa-Francorchamps has bad consequences for Earl Bamber. The Cadillac driver will receive a penalty on the starting grid for the next round of the season – of all things the important 24 Hours of Le Mans (June 15-16, 2024).

The stewards identified the experienced New Zealander as the cause of the collision with Sean Gelael’s #31 WRT-BMW M4 GT3 and gave him an additional five starting positions for his next WEC race (Le Mans). The stewards announced their decision on Sunday night at 12:01 a.m., three hours after the end of the race.

WEC Spa: Serious racing accident triggers red flags (01:53 min.)

Cadillac travels to Le Mans with grid penalty

Bamber, Le Mans winner in 2015 and 2017, also received three penalty points. At this year’s endurance classic, the 33-year-old will share one of the three LMDh Cadillacs with IndyCar star Alex Palou and his WEC teammate Alex Lynn. The grid penalty may not be as significant in a 24-hour race, but it still represents a disadvantage in the extremely strong competition from hypercars.

Cadillac-BMW accident: shocking moment in Spa

The serious accident between the #2 Cadillac V-Series.R (Bamber, Lynn) and the GT3-BMW (Leung, Gelael, Farfus) was a big shock moment in the race, which was extended by almost two hours on the Belgian Ardennes circuit. A blessing in disguise: Both drivers were checked at the medical center after the crash, but were uninjured.

Caddy driver Bamber drove closely in the slipstream of Neel Jani’s #99 Porsche on the infamous Kemmel straight until, in this tight, high-speed situation, he hit the rear of the WRT BMW driving on the right, took off briefly and spun several times on the track . The race ended early for the US car and the GT3 driver in the accident. The accident triggered a red flag of almost two hours and later caused the race to be extended by 1:44 hours after the accident site had been extensively repaired.

WRT-BMW unlucky – Valentino Rossi has to watch

The early end of the #31 BMW meant a total failure in the LMGT3 category for the local heroes from WRT, who had recently achieved a double victory in Imola. During the second hour of racing, the #46 BMW hit Valentino Rossi makes his WEC debut after making contact with the #38 Jota-Porsche (Rasmussen, Hanson, Button) into the barriers. The cause of this situation was, of all people, Rene Rast in the #20 BMW M Hybrid V8 (Sheldon van der Linde, Rast, Frijns), who was given a drive-through penalty.

“Unfortunately, both LMGT3 cars were taken out of the race by Hypercars. That should be a sign that this is something that needs to be responded to,” warned BMW works driver Augusto Farfus, who took the #31 M4 GT3 with Gelael and Darren Leung shares.

The WEC race in Spa-Francorchamps offered non-stop drama and highlights. Do you want to know how a customer team sensationally celebrated victory with Jota-Porsche? You can read all the background information in the following article:

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