Breakout weekend for Dylan Murry at Mid-Ohio

May 7, 2019

Breakout weekend for Dylan Murry at Mid-Ohio

May 7, 2019

IMSA’s two top Challenge series, MICHELIN Pilot Challenge and Prototype challenge, serve as a good training ground for young talent and next generation drivers.

Second generation driver Dylan Murry maximized his time and performance in both of those this weekend at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

Dylan Murry with the Michelin Man on pre-grid. Photo: Michelin North America

The 18-year-old Georgian is the son of sports car veteran David Murry. A year ago, the younger Murry made his debut alongside his dad in MICHELIN Pilot Challenge competition.

Murry and 2018 co-driver James Cox stepped up to a full-season GS program this year. They drive with one of the pre-eminent sports car teams in the paddock, Riley-Team AMG, in a Mercedes-AMG GT4.

MICHELIN PILOT CHALLENGE PODIUM

No. 35 Riley Motorsports Mercedes-AMG, GS: James Cox, Dylan Murry. Photo: Michelin North America

Murry’s rise has occurred in the last two MICHELIN Pilot Challenge races with two great finishing drives. He nearly passed Jesse Lazare’s MIA McLaren for the final podium position on the last lap in Sebring. Alas, fourth still marked a career-best result in his eighth career start.

No. 35 Riley Motorsports Mercedes-AMG, GS: James Cox, Dylan Murry. Photo: Michelin North America

This weekend though saw him take the next step. Murry held onto the Mercedes on a damp, misty track. He made it to second place behind eventual winner Trent Hindman once the final pit stop sequence was complete. Cox had driven a clean first 45-plus minutes and pitted from the top 10.

PROTOTYPE CHALLENGE VICTORY
#54 MLT Motorsports Ligier JS P3, LMP3: Dylan Murry, Dakota Dickerson

While Saturday’s race marked Murry’s first podium of the weekend, it was only the beginning of his success.

MLT Motorsports, in only its second race, made a driver switch this event. The father/son Murry pairing debuted together at Sebring and finished a very solid fifth. This race, the team installed past Team USA Scholarship recipient Dakota Dickerson alongside the younger Murry. This meant the car had two drivers with the combined age of 40. For reference, David Murry is 62!

Dickerson took the lead by Lap 5 at a track he’s had some experience on in the Road to Indy formula. Murry, then switching from a GT4 car to a higher downforce LMP3 car, took over at the car’s one pit stop and ensured the No. 54 Ligier JS P3 stayed out front the remainder of the race.

“We just started the team, this is incredible,” said Murry. “Dakota was in the lead, came in and we put new Michelin tires on and I went out and just kept it in that position. The car was fantastic.

“This means a lot to me. I saw the 4 car (Neil Alberico, Leo Lamelas) kind of catch me. Every now and then he’d make a little mistake, fall back and then catch me again. It feels awesome.”

Emotion poured out in victory lane as Murry greeted his parents and the rest of the MLT team. Dr. Mike Thompson, also a driver, owns the team.

After this weekend, Murry and Cox sit sixth in the GS points standings (22 back of the leaders) with seven of 10 races still go.

He’s seventh by himself in the LMP3 points standings with three races left, as he missed the opening LMP3 race at Daytona.

The next race for MICHELIN Pilot Challenge is at Watkins Glen, June 29. The next Prototype Challenge race is at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, July 6.

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