Tudor Road America 2015

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By the time August rolls around the Tudor United Sportscar Championship season is already well underway, often making the 14 turn, 4.048 mile Road America a pivotal round in the series. This is the time of the season where teams need to look to extend a lead in points or gain points back. As always it looked to be another exciting round.

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Friday consisted of two very wet practice sessions.

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Not every team took part in these sessions; since the race was going to be dry there was no point in risking the possibility of crunching a car, but the ones that did were struggling for grip in the tricky conditions.

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Saturday morning held another round of practice and by this time the track had dried out.

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Being this was the final hour practice before qualifying teams were moving quickly, making adjustments and getting the cars dialed in before the afternoon sessions.

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Qualifying got underway later in the afternoon. With only having one dry practice session teams were hoping they made right adjustments to the car for that one perfect fast lap.

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In GT-Daytona it was Patrick Lindsey in the #73 Park Place Porsche that took pole; but in GTLM Earl Bamber in the #912 Porsche North America 911rsr that took pole and set the class track record at 2:02.384.

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In the Prototype Challenge class it was the hometown driver James French that took pole in the #38 Performance Tech Motorsports Oreca FLM09. In P1 it was Joey Hand in the 01 Ganassi Ford DP; the first pole of the season for them and their first since last year’s round at Long Beach.

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Sunday started with a morning warm up session. Being only 20 minutes in length its a good way for teams to make any last set ups before the race.

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Race day also brought warmer temperatures; while it was still partly cloudy track temps were the warmest they had been all weekend.

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With the prototypes leading the was the race was underway. The #912 Porsche was off in front but the rest of the GTLM cars were wasting no time running down the hill to turn 5.

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After a great start to the race the #01 Ganassi Ford DP had a boost issue and was quickly overtaken by the trailing cars. A yellow for the #97 Turner Motorsports BMW proved to be useful for the 01, allowing them to make the repairs they needed but as for the #97 BMW it was the end of the day.

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Pitting from the lead the #912 Porsche 911rsr had to execute the stop perfectly; driver Joerg Bergmiester was getting in the zone preparing for his turn…

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…and after a flawless stop the #912 was back on the track.

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As the race began to wind down the battles were heating up…

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…and traffic was starting to play an issue.

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The #007 TMG-AMR Aston Martin of Kuno Wittmer and Christina Nielsen was out in front in GT-Daytona; but the bad news for them was they were around 10 minutes short on fuel and had to relinquish the lead to the #33 Viper Exchange Dodge Viper.

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The #911 Porsche North America 911RSR had taken the lead after the #912 sister car had to make a unscheduled pit stop for what was thought to be a loose hood. This had been a hell of a run for #911 after having to start from the back of the field as penalty for an overnight engine swap.

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The battle for the final two spots on the podium between the #62 Risi Ferrari and the #912 Porsche proved to be the most entertaining. The #62 was the defending race winner and with older tires was at a disadvantage. The #912 took the lead on the final lap and they would have to settle for the 3rd.

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The #10 Konica Minolta Corvette DP of Wayne Taylor racing was in the lead when the bad luck bug bit them for the second year in a row in Wisconsin. A suspension failure caused them to come in for the fix, handing the lead to the #31 Whelan Corvette DP of Action Express.

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The #31 Whelen Corvette DP of Dane Cameron and Eric Curran that beat out its team car and taking the overall win, with this win it put them only 2 points behind the championship leaders. With Bruno Junqueira and Chris Cumming winning the PC class in the #11 RSR entry, Nick Tandy and Patrick Pilet winning GTLM in the #911 Porsche and Ben Keating and Jeroen Bleekemolen in the #33 Viper Exchange Viper winning GT-Daytona.

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The champagne spraying marked the end of the weekend and with the way points are at the moment each race should be quite exciting.

Remaining Tudor USCC schedule VIR being held last weekend.

17-19 September 2015: Circuit of the Americas

1-3 October 2015: Petit Le Mans, Road Atlanta

If you’re in those areas be sure to check them out.

Lapinski

Instagram: @peter_laps, @lifeblasters

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