July 17, 2021


July 17, 2021

Michelin Wins First Half of Northeast Grand Prix Before Lighting Ends Race

  • Corvette, Aston Martin Take Wins at Northeast Grand Prix
  • Michelin Engineers Help IMSA Teams Beat the Heat
  • Mercedes-AMG, Hyundai Take Michelin Pilot Challenge Wins

LIME ROCK, CT July 17, 2021 — Michelin and the IMSA WeatherTech Championship teams expected hot competition in the series return to Lime Rock Park for the mid-point of the 2021 IMSA WeatherTech Championship.

The competition was indeed hot, both literally and figuratively, as track temperatures approached 130 degrees, nearly 40 degrees higher than the ambient temperatures, on a very hot and humid day.

“Our return to Lime Rock for the first time in 24 months brought some interesting challenges for our engineers and the WeatherTech Championship and Michelin Pilot Challenge teams in terms of track surface and temperatures,” said Tony Ménard, director of motorsport, Michelin North America.

The two hour-40-minute race on the classic 1.5-mile circuit appeared likely to remain caution free for the third time in four years, but lightning in the area with 71 minutes remaining required a red flag stoppage to protect fans, officials, and teams.

Additional lightning strikes then brought the race to a premature conclusion.

“Our Michelin engineers worked with the teams on tire management and tire strategies to deal with the high temperatures on a track that can take a toll on tires. Our collaboration with the teams helped manage the situation. We are all disappointed that the fans and teams could not see how everything played out, but we will analyze the data and findings and prepare for the next race at Road America,” said Ménard.

Corvette Racing finishes 1-2

Corvette Racing took the top two spots in GTLM. The No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette piloted by Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor started on the pole and hardly looked back before lightning brought out the red flag.

The win by Garcia means that he has now won at every active track in the IMSA series. Tommy Milner and Nick Tandy finished second in the Chevrolet Corvette C8.R. The WeatherTech Racing Porsche 911 RSR-10 driven by Cooper MacNeil and Mathieu Jaminet took third.

Heart of Racing Team Aston Martin claims second win of the season

In GTD, Roman De Angelis and Ross Gunn also won from the pole for the No. 23 Heart of Racing Team in the Aston Martin Vantage GT3. The team led most of the way and shifted back to the lead after a pit stop cycle with 108 minutes left in the race. Paul Miller Racing finished second with a Lamborghini Huracán GT3 Evo piloted by Madison Snow and Bryan Sellers.  Rounding out the podium in third was the Lexus RC F GT3 of Jack Hawksworth and Aaron Telitz.

Big investments in IMSA MICHELIN® Pilot Challenge and Lime Rock Park

Connecticut-based FCPEuro is turning to IMSA and its home state racing scene to expand an already successful brand. The global online supplier of replacement parts for European cars launched an IMSA MICHELIN® Pilot Challenge team in 2021 while investing millions in Lime Rock Park. Watch our video piece here.

Michelin Post-Race Notes

  • The NBC Sports Network Michelin Tech Minute introduced viewers to the “The Goldilocks Effect” when it comes to tire pressure. Watch here.
  • A new race lap record was set in the GTLM class. Jaminet set the new mark with a 50.746 second lap.
  • The IMSA MICHELIN® Pilot Challenge Lime Rock Park 120 was won by the Mercedes Benz-AMG driven by Jeff Mosing and Eric Foss with Murillo Racing. A call to take only two MICHELIN® tires during the last pit stop propelled the Mercedes-AMG GT GT4 to victory. Bryan Herta Autosport with Curb-Agajanian won the TCR class with drivers Taylor Hagler and Michael Lewis in a Hyundai Veloster N TCR. The win marked Hagler’s first in her professional racing career. The top finish also extended the team’s lead in the TCR standings unofficially to 250 points.
  • A pair of 16-year-old drivers finished on the TCR podium in the IMSA MICHELIN® Pilot Challenge Lime Rock Park 120. American’s Tyler Maxson and Tyler Gonzalez finished third with Copeland MotorSports in the Hyundai Veloster N TCR.
  • A local team debuted in the IMSA MICHELIN® Pilot Challenge Lime Rock Park 120 Saturday. AutoTechnic Racing is located in New Milford, Connecticut which is about 30 miles from Lime Rock Park. The team features two Connecticut racers Attilio Albani and Elivan Goulart driving a BMW M4 GT4.

#77: Bryan Herta Autosport w/ Curb-Agajanian Hyundai Veloster N TCR, TCR: Michael Lewis, Taylor Hagler

Next Up:

The 2021 IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship heads to Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. The race starts at 2:40 pm ET on Sunday August, 8th. The event can be seen live with Track Pass on NBC Sports Gold or later that day on NBCSN at 8:00 pm ET.

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