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Porsche Motorsports Event Notes. Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen
Posted by: newsla on Jun 25, 2014 - 06:53 AM
USCR News
Porsche Motorsports Event Notes. Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen


Dateline. Watkins Glen, New York

Circuit. Watkins Glen International

Track Length/Turns. 3.4-miles/14-turn Natural Terrain Road Course

Round. TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. Round 5 of 12

Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama: Rounds 7 and 8 of 16,

 

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TUDOR Championship. Mobil 1 Sports Car Grand Prix, Canadian Tire Motorsports Park, Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada, July 10-13

Porsche Events.

TUDOR United SportsCar Championship

Date. Sunday, June 29, 2014, 11:15 a.m. ET/ 8:15 a.m. PT

Race Duration. Six-Hours

Classes. GT Le Mans (Porsche 911 RSR), GT Daytona class (Porsche 911 GT America)

Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama

Date. Race 1: Friday, June 27, 3:10 p.m. ET/ 12:10 p.m. PT Race 2: Saturday, June 28, 6:45 p.m. ET/ 3:45 p.m. PT

Race Duration. 45-minutes each

Classes. Platinum (Model Year 2014 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars), Gold (MY 2011-2012 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars)

Porsche Profile. Event Story Lines

To the Point – Porsche Teams In Contention for Class Point Championships

With the GT Le Mans and GT Daytona entrants each completing four rounds, and with the 24 Hours of Le Mans in everyone’s rear view mirror, it’s time to get to the business of winning the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship points titles. All the top competitors in both classes have had their share of surprise wins, disappointing defeats, official rulings both for and against, and just plain good and bad luck, but, with Watkins Glen representing the first of seven full weekends of racing remaining, everyone remains in the hunt for the top spots. In GT Le Mans (GTLM), Porsche 911 RSR drivers Richard Lietz (Austria) and Nick Tandy (Great Britain) are tied for third in driver points, only 12 points from the lead – 36 points are awarded for a first-place finish. Porsche North America teammates Patrick Long (Playa del Rey, California) and Michael Christensen (Denmark) are only one point behind them. Porsche maintains its manufacturer point lead – now only two points – over BMW and Chevrolet. Tandy/Lietz, along with France’s Patrick Pilet (who drove with the duo at Daytona and Sebring) hold a one-point lead in the Tequila Patron North American Endurance Championship (comprised of Daytona, Sebring, Watkins Glen and Petit Le Mans).

In the GT Daytona (GTD) class, Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Illinois) and Leh Keen (Atlanta) are in second place with their Porsche 911 GT America, two points out of the lead. Alex Job Racing teammates Mario Farnbacher (Germany) and Ian James (Phoenix) are in third place after winning in Detroit. Three points behind them are John Potter (Salt Lake City) and Andy Lally (Dacula, Georgia), who won Sebring in their No. 44 Magnus Racing Porsche. Snow Racing’s Madison Snow (Lehi, Utah) and Jan Heylen (Tampa) are sixth in points, but they are only 13 markers out of first in their Porsche 911 GT America. Porsche is in second place in the GTD manufacturer standings, three points out of first. Potter/Lally are fifth in the Tequila Patron North American Endurance Championship – 12 points from the lead.

Racing Abroad – American Porsche Drivers at Le Mans

While no North American Porsche team officially raced at the 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 14-15, a host of drivers familiar to TUDOR United SportsCar Championship fans competed in the 82nd Annual French endurance racing classic. The highest finishing Porsche North America team driver, Richard Lietz (Austria) who will race the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR with Nick Tandy (Great Britain) in the Six Hours of the Glen, raced to a third-place finish at La Sarthe driving the works Porsche Team Manthey Porsche 911 RSR. Tandy finished seventh at Le Mans in a second Porsche factory 911 RSR he was sharing with fellow Porsche works driver Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France). Patrick Long (Playa del Rey, California), the United States’ only Porsche factory driver, joined Dempsey Racing-Proton at Le Mans finishing fifth in GTE-AM class racing a Porsche 911 RSR with Patrick Dempsey (Malibu, California) and Joe Foster (Suwanee, Georgia).

Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Illinois) and Jeroen Bleekemolen (Netherlands) took on Le Mans with a Porsche 911 GT3 RSR. The effort became a two-driver attack after the team’s third, Bret Curtis (Lake Sherwood, California), was not medically cleared following an accident. The accident forced the drivers into a backup car and, with no “amateur” level driver, into the GTE-PRO class where they finished and impressive fifth.

While not at Le Mans, Team Falken Tire’s Wolf Henzler (Germany) ran a Porsche 911 GT3 R to fourth overall in the June 21-22 24 Hours of Nürburgring. It was the highest-ever finish for Falken Tire in the legendary German endurance race. His Tudor Championship co-driver, Bryan Sellers (Braselton, Ga.), did much of the testing for the Falken Tire squad during the break. Falken tested multiple days on three different occasions at three different tracks including Watkins Glen International.

Supercup Superstar: Kuba Giermaziak

On the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship GT Daytona entry list for the Six Hours of the Glen you’ll find Kuba Giermaziak (Poland) driving the No. 30 NGT Motorsport Porsche 911 GT America. A familiar name to North American sportscar fans through impressive wins such as the GT Challenge class victory at Petit Le Mans in 2012, the Polish driver also enjoys significant following the world-over through a thriving Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup career. He has won several times in the premier one-make Porsche Cup series including last weekend at round three of the tough sprint race series at Austria’s Spielberg circuit. Giermaziak (pronounced “Ger-maze'-i-ak”) now leads the points in that series, which features the latest Porsche 911 GT3 Cup racecars, ahead of Earl Bamber of New Zealand. He’ll go right from this race at the Glen to the next Supercup race at Great Britain’s Silverstone circuit July 4-6. In the GTD class so far this year, he and Cisneros have had bad luck but Giermaziak, who will be 24 years-old on July 9, has been in the top three during practice and qualifying sessions, and it won’t be long before he appears atop the podium this year. Up-and-coming Danish driver Christina Nielsen will join him for the six hours of competition at the Glen this weekend.

Porsche History. Watkins Glen

Like every longstanding road course in the country, Watkins Glen International has long been a “Porsche track”. Going back to the days when the Watkins Glen races ran through the streets of this famous racing village, both Porsche factory and customer racing teams have had success here. The first Porsche 356 raced on the original street course in 1952, and by 1955, Porsche 550 Spyders had taken both first and second place in the Queen Catherine Cup race. Bob Holbert, Roger Penske, Sam Posey, Pedro Rodriguez and Leo Kinnunen, along with Peter Gregg and Hurley Haywood, all won six-hour races at the Glen in the ‘60s and ‘70s, followed by the Porsche factory-backed Team Penske 917-30, driven by Mark Donohue, which set a track record and lapped everyone but the second place finisher en route to a Can-Am victory in 1973. The years 1984-1986 saw Al Holbert and Derek Bell win the Camel Continental three years in a row in factory-backed Porsche 962s. More recently, long-time Porsche customer team Brumos Racing, with Leh Keen and Andrew Davis at the helm, won the GRAND-AM six-hour event here on their way to the Rolex GT championship. Although Brumos is not competing this year, Davis (now with Dempsey Racing) and Keen (with Alex Job Racing) will be running Porsche 911 GT America racecars in the GT Daytona class. And even Hurley Haywood is back at the Glen for 2014, as an instructor and advisor to Dempsey Racing.

Porsche Point of View.

Jens Walther, President/CEO, Porsche Motorsport North America

“Endurance racing is the history of Porsche motorsport. We opened the 2014 season continuing that tradition at Daytona and Sebring. Now, both our Porsche North America team and customer teams are looking forward to the next highlight in the North American Endurance Championship, The Six Hours of Watkins Glen. There will be over 40 Porsche 911-based racecars on track this weekend across the GT Le Mans, GT Daytona classes in the Tudor Championship and the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama. We wish our customer teams best of luck for the races on one of the most iconic race tracks in North America.”

Nick Tandy, Driver, No. 911 Porsche North America Porsche 911 RSR – Tudor United SportsCar Championship, GTLM Class

“The TUSC has had a break since Laguna, but at Porsche we've been flat out. We did a lot of testing before Le Mans and then the race, plus we've also been testing with the Porsche North America team in between as well. So, I haven't been missing out on seat time and the crew is also still up to speed. The longer races, I hope, will be better for us because the whole team gets more involved in the battle. Our pit crew has been on top form this year so more stops gives us more chances to make things happen and gives us more options on strategy also.

I'm looking forward to getting back into the competition. Watkins Glen is a super track: fast and flowing. Whilst I don't expect it to be one of our favored tracks this year in terms of relative speed of our Porsche 911 RSR compared some of our opponents, the longer race format should definitely play to our strengths in that department. Every team has settled into the season now and things will, I'm sure, be very tight from now on in.”

Andy Lally, Driver, No. 44 Magnus Racing Porsche 911 GT America – Tudor United SportsCar Championship, GTD Class

“Watkins Glen has a flow like no other road course. Fast, wide corners with big elevation changes, friendly curbing and good passing zones challenge every driver that has ever raced here. To win the Six Hours of The Glen it takes a really good team, a fast car and smart strategists and intelligent drivers. This is a six hour sprint race and there can be no weak links in the team."


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