“Everyone will remember the last four minutes, but for me, it was two hours of hard fighting”, Pfaff Motorsports’ driver Mathieu Jaminet
THAT SUMS UP THE INTENSITY OF THE FIGHT BETWEEN LAURENS VANTHOOR AND MATHIEU JAMINET IN THE CLOSING MINUTES OF THE ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA
Pfaff Motorsports has accomplished quite a lot in its short time competing in IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. They won the GTD Championship in its second full season. and now, they just won the Rolex 24 at Daytona in its fourth attempt!
For this to happened everything and everyone had to come together. And on this 60th running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona, it did.
“Obviously, this is something we will remember forever. This is why we do it. We put this program together with the goal of success as a group. We win as a team; we lose as a team. We are going to make it a point to continue this legacy and build something great,” said General Manager Steve Bortolotti.
This being the first race in the all Pro category for Pfaff in IMSA with the GTD PRO class, they could count of drivers Matt Campbell, Felipe Nasr and Mathieu Jaminet to get the job done. It was hard fighting for most of the race but the last couple of hours, the intensity was raised by a notch and some as Steve Bortolotti adds : “That was an intense finish. Obviously, Laurens is a great driver and we know that from working with him last year, and winning the IMSA championship with him. We thought we had a really good car, especially at the end. Mathieu did an amazing job. Frankly, all three drivers did an amazing job. The team was on it all weekend.”
Mathieu Jaminet was into the fight and trying to keep the Pfaff Motorsports Motul Porsche 911 GT3 R ahead of Vanthoor’s KCMG Porsche he did not realize it was the ultimate lap of the race.
“Honestly, I didn’t know it was the last lap. Everyone will remember the last four minutes, but for me, it was two hours of hard fighting. To stay in front for two hours was tough – really tough. When it comes down to the last lap of 24-hours of racing, it is what everyone wants to have, including us drivers, but on the other hand, I feel for the other team because they deserved to win as much as we do. So, hats off to Laurens and to the KCMG crew because they also deserved that win. We worked hard for it. Hats off to everyone at Pfaff Motorsports. They did an amazing job on strategy and in the pits.”
“At the moment I am speechless. It is difficult to realize what just happened. This is the biggest race I have won in my career. This is the one everyone wants to win; it is the watch (Rolex Daytona) everyone wants to have. To finally get it, it is incredible. I need some time to realize what just happened. Especially in that way: a proper field, proper cars around us. I had a crazy finish with one of the best GT drivers in the world fighting against me. The big picture is just perfect.”
“Matt did an incredible job throughout the race but especially at the end, because he brought the car back up to the KCMG Porsche which made a huge difference. I am super happy.”
For Matt Campbell, there is no better way to start the season: “I’m super emotional. We are pretty speechless to win a race in such a fashion, especially in the new era with GTD Pro. It is fantastic. To win it the way we did with Mathieu in the car and the finish we had, it just makes it that extra special. And now we can call ourselves Rolex 24 Hour winners. It is an incredible feeling.”
“If you look at the cars that were in GTD Pro, it was a race of attrition. We just knew we had to keep it clean until the morning and see if we were in a position to fight, and we were. We had a fantastic strategy and we were able to bring the car back to the front with five hours to go. Then we could start thinking about pacing ourselves for the final hours.”
“Mathieu and I have done this race many times. We have come close many times, and now to be able to finally have a win, especially with a full-season effort with Pfaff, it is a great way to start the season. Hopefully, we can get a few more along the way.”
After all the festivities, and we are pretty sure there will be, the team will now set its sight on the 12 hours of Sebring coming in March. They will surely be ready to defend their 2021 win.
Image: Pfaff Motorsports / Lenssen Photo