The end result may look familiar with Riley Dickinson leading home Tom Sargent, but today’s Porsche Deluxe Carrera Cup North America race at the F1 Crypto.com Miami Grand Prix was anything but ordinary.
The 3.363-mile Grand Prix circuit encircling the home of the Miami Dolphins NFL team – Hard Rock Stadium – produced spectacular racing across all three classes.
After running four-wide through the first turn, championship leader Riley Dickinson emerged in the lead from Long Beach-winner Will Martin, MDK’s Jimmy Llibre, and a fast-starting Varun Choksey.
McElrea Racing’s Tom Sargent moved past Choksey on lap three while British racer Alex Sedgwick began his charge through the pack.
The 40-minute race had its first full course yellow with 16 minutes to go when Jimmy Llibre came to a halt after suffering radiator damage from contact with another car.
That kicked off the drama-filled final portion of the race. On the restart, Martin made contact with Dickinson in turn one, and his race was over one corner later with broken steering.
Dan Clarke and Kay van Berlo (making his series return aboard an Accelerating Performance entry) also had heavy contact, putting both cars out on the spot. At the same time, Sean Varwig and Jason Hart collided, with Hart also spinning in turn one.
On the restart, Dickinson held the lead from Sargent, with Alex Sedgwick now in third place. However, the British racer’s podium ambitions were ruined by a drive-through penalty for an earlier incident.
At the finish, Dickinson and Sargent recorded their fourth 1-2 finish of the season, with Michael McCann avoiding the drama and scoring his second-consecutive podium finish – backing up his first-ever podium at Long Beach.
Dickinson was fortunate to make it to the finish – the contact with Martin heavily damaged his right rear wheel, but his Michelin tire remained inflated to the checkered flag.
“Standing on the F1 podium here in Miami and hearing the national anthem was probably one of the coolest experiences of my racing career. That was really surreal,” Dickinson said.
“After the contact on the first restart, I had a bit of damage for the rest of the race. I had a very aggressive high-speed vibration, and the right rear tow was heavily knocked out, so in braking and turning to the left, it was pretty interesting.
“I’m looking forward to tomorrow, but I’m definitely going to celebrate this one. That was a really cool experience.”
In the Pro-Am battle, Efrin Castro held off Marco Cirone for the victory with Kyle Washington earning his first podium of the season after debuting at Long Beach.
Mark Kvamme again showed his speed in the race. The MDK racer scored his fourth consecutive Am class win – leading home Michael Merritt and James McCann.
The Porsche Deluxe Carrera Cup teams are back in preparation (and repair) mode for the second race of the weekend scheduled for 12:15 pm tomorrow.