The Le Mans dream has turned into a nightmare for Keating Motorsport with the news breaking this evening that the GTE Am class winning Ford GT effort has been handed a 55.2 second time penalty after post-race technical inspection found the fuelling rig delivered a full load under the minimum 45 second time allowed.
STOP PRESS. A second decision, following just a few minutes after the time penalty sees the Ford disqualified for a similar offence to the #68 GTE Pro car, the fuel tank found to be 0.1 litres in excess of the permitted total under the BoP with additional fuel still to be drained.
Project 1 Motorsports, who finished 44 seconds back from the Ford then inherit the win for Patrick Lindsey, Egidio Perfetti and Joerg Bergmeister, the team securing the WEC title on Sunday with their initial second place finish, now becoming a win.
The decision elevates the JMW Motorsport Ferrari to second in class and the #62 WeatherTech Racimg Ferrari of Cooper Macneill, Rob Smith and Toni Vilander claim the final podium spot.
The decision also means that Keating Motorsport loses out on an automatic entry for next year’s race, Project 1 will receive a pair of entries already for their two-car WEC squad.
The Stewards Decisions come as a final blow after the #85 Ford was left to fight hard for a win having been forced to pit by race officials for a change to the damaged nose section of the car. The change was made in double quick time, the Keating team assisted by the Chip Ganassi Racing pit crew to execute the job, Ben Keating though was then dealt a stop and go penalty for spinning the wheels out of the pit stop, leaving him to fend off a by then closely following Bergmeister, Jeroen Bleekemolen getting aboard for the final stint and pulling away again.