Wants, Needs and Cans at VIR

October 5, 2013

Wants, Needs and Cans at VIR

October 5, 2013

lucasThere are people that want to win, people who need to win, and people who can win here at VIR. The question, of course, is who will win?

The Muscle Milk Pickett Racing Honda team with Lucas Luhr and Klaus Graf has turned the 2013 season into a continuing victory party, racking up overall wins in the last seven consecutive races to clinch the 2013 ALMS P1 championship. A win here would be a series-record eighth in a row in a season of near-flawless performances.

Things have not been so much fun at rival Dyson Racing Mazda, where the team has overcome some early season challenges to steadily sort out each issue until they claimed the race pole here at VIR. Drivers,Guy Smith and Johnny Mowlem would like nothing better than to cap a perfect weekend here by taking the teams’ first victory of the Dyson Racing team’s 30th anniversary celebration.

In the mega-competitive GT class, the defending race and ALMS 2012 GT champions #4 Oliver Gavin and Tommy Milner have slipped to third, and need a win to narrow the 18 point gap that has opened up in favor of #3 Corvette Racing’s Jan Magnussen and Antonio Garcia.

Meanwhile BMW Team RLL’s #56 Dirk Mueller needs a win here with Joey Hand co-driving to keep the pressure on and close down the 13 point gap to Magnussen and Garcia. Mueller’s BMW teammates Bill Auberlen and Maxime Martin start from the GT pole as they seek a second victory of the season.

viperVIR is the unofficial “home ” race for a potent pair of SRT Vipers from the Riley Technologies shops in Mooresville. Dominik Farnbacher and Marc Goossens have one win for the #91 Viper and are a serious threat to score another, while the #93 Viper of Jonathan Bomarito and Kuno Wittmer has been tantalizingly close to an elusive first victory in a pair of runner-up finishes.

Porsche needs a win to avoid heading into the season finale at Road Atlanta later this month looking at a possible shut-out. CORE autosport’s #06 Porsche driven by Patrick Long and Colin Braun has shown much promise.

The Paul Miller Racing Porsche with Bryce Miller and Marco Holzer starts fourth in GT and would like nothing better than to score Porsche’s first win of the season, a desire shared by the Falken Porsche team of Wolf Henzler and Bryan Sellers, who have three wins in the past two seasons, but are currently O for 2013.

It has also been a frustrating season for the returning Risi Competizione Ferrari team with newcomer Matteo Malucelli and former champion Olivier Beretta, who will start second. The West Racing/AJR Ferrari of Bill Sweedler and Townsend Bell has the best Ferrari finish to date with a third.

A clear, sunny day on a fast narrow track with limited opportunities for passing suggests that traffic, pit stops and ten occasional rub are the likely order of the day. Stay tuned.

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