Slow and steady may not have won the race for Patrick Dempsey and the #81 Team Seattle – Advanced Engineering Ferrari F430, but it did get them a solid performance. Dempsey and teammates Joe Foster and Don Kitch Jr. completed 301 laps over 24 hours to finish 9th in the GT2 class of 17 starters and 30th overall.
Despite the steady pace, the day wasn’t entirely drama free. Kitch was ill for most of the race forcing Foster and Dempsey to double-stint (drive for two consecutive fuel runs) for the majority of the race. At about the three-quarters distance mark, Dempsey had to bring in the #81 for an unscheduled stop to replace a rear wing mount believed to have been damaged in an earlier collision. They also had to fix a small gear shifter issue earlier in the race.
The 301 laps that Team Seattle completed was 28 laps behind the winning GT2 Ferrari F430 entered by Risi Competizione and that was good for an average speed of 170.395 km/h (105.879 mph).
The race was won by the LMP1 class #9 Peugeot 908 with 382 laps run over the 24 hours. It was followed home by the #8 Peugeot 908 (one lap behind) and the #1 Audi R15 (6 laps behind). This is the second consecutive year that the podium was made of solely diesel powered cars and the fourth consecutive year that a diesel powered car won the race overall.
The Team Seattle crew was working to raise money for the Seattle Children’s Hospital and the Mecenat Chirurgie Cardiaque. The total donations pledged to the team by race’s end was estimated to be $253,890. Their goal is to raise $1 million for the two hospitals. Donations are still being accepted at teamseattle.com.