A trio of podiums highlighted Wright Motorsports’ weekend at Road America. The double-header Blancpain GT World Challenge America event saw a second and sixth place overall finish for Patrick Long and Scott Hargrove’s No. 58 Porsche Consulting Porsche 911 GT3 R and a second and third place Pro/Am class finish for the No. 91 Porsche of Matt Campbell and Anthony Imperato.
The weekend started off on mixed terms after Saturday morning’s qualifying sessions. In the first of two sessions Long lock in the second place starting slot in the No. 58 and Imperato take the No. 91 to seventh and third in the Pro/Am category. The second session- which dictates the starting grid for Race 2- saw Campbell drive to fourth both overall and in class, while Hargrove qualified ninth overall.
A clean start to Race 1 saw Imperato dive around Bechtolsheimer for sixth overall and second in class, while Long maintained the second place slot. From there, both Wright Motorsports Porsches remained right in the thick of things as Imperato put pressure on Hedlund and Long fended off the pair of K-Pax Bentleys. At the 45-minute mark, the No. 58 was handed off to Hargrove and the No. 91 over to Campbell who shuffled right back into their positions.
With just 10-minutes remaining, the yellow flag was drawn to remove a car from Turn 11. A speedy cleanup by the safety crew allowed the race to resume with five-minutes on the clock – which is where the fun began. The final three-laps saw a battle of mixed classes as Campbell diced back and forth with Marcelli for sixth overall before ultimately getting around both him and Max Soulet for the fourth place slot. Meanwhile, the Cameron had climbed through the field and gotten around Hargrove for second. By the time the checkered flag flew, the No. 58 locked in a third-place result, followed by the No. 91 in fourth. This meant a second-place podium for both of the cars in their respective classes.
What was expected to be a wet Race 2, turned out to be much the opposite as teams took the green flag under dry conditions. A clean start allowed Campbell to leap around Parente for third overall, while Hargrove defended his ninth place starting position. The two maintained their positions until Long took over the No. 58 and Imperato climbed aboard the No. 91.
From there, Imperato managed to hold onto third overall for the greater duration of the race, while Long advanced to seventh, gaining ground on the rest of the pack. With nine laps remaining, No. 91 dropped back to sixth, right in front of the No. 58 and an abbreviated caution was called bunching up the field. There was one lap remaining when Long made his way around both Imperato and Marcelli solidifying a fifth-place result for himself and Hargrove and a seventh for Campbell and Imperato, who claimed third in the Pro/Am category.
The Wright Motorsports team will retake the Blancpain GT World Challenge America stage one final time for Rounds 13 and 14 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, October 18-20.
No. 58 Wright Motorsports/ Porsche Consulting Porsche 911 GT3 R
“Overall it was a strong weekend for the No. 58 car and nice to be back on the podium with a second in Race 1. Race 2 didn’t quite go our way. We gambled on a rain setup, but the rain never came so we made the best of a late abbreviated caution to fight our way to fifth in a last lap battle. We’ll keep our heads down and strive for a couple of podiums in Las Vegas.”
No. 58 Wright Motorsports/Porsche Consulting Porsche 911 GT3 R
“This weekend was tough right from the beginning. We had to work on the setup in practice, but got very close in qualifying. Pat did a great job qualifying second and finishing second yesterday. We obviously started a little further back than we wanted in Race 2. We expected a rain race and couldn’t get the tires to come up to temperature on the drying surface. We pushed as hard as we could, Pat made up a lot of time and we finished right on the tail of a podium spot. Now we move onto Vegas. I think the track will be very interesting and everyone will enjoy the fun around the finale.”
No. 91 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R
“It was another weekend where we made the best of it. The BOP is clearly not in our favor as we are 10kph down on the straightaways. The team gave us a great car to race and executed our pit stops perfectly. At the end of the day it was not enough for us to be able to be as competitive as we would have liked. We are still looking for our first win and we will be pushing for it in Vegas.”
No. 91 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R
“It was a weekend of ups and downs, but I think we did the absolute best job we could with what we had available to us, which was rewarding. In the end we weren’t really able to capitalize and get the result that we wanted due to circumstances out of our control. The track wasn’t in our favor, compared to the other cars, but I’m looking forward to Vegas. It should be a challenging, technical circuit that favors the Porsche so hopefully we can finish the year on a high.”
Source. Wright Motorsports