Austin, Texas – Competition Motorsports capped off a busy weekend of IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge presented by Yokohama racing in Austin, Texas by adding three more
podiums to an impressive season-long streak of strong finishes in the highly competitive Porsche
With a packed 44-car field doing battle on the 3.4-mile Circuit of the Americas, Competition Motorsports showcased strength in both preparation and execution as all eight team cars finished both sprint races on the day. The team also showed a healthy dose of speed, with a win capping off a strong contingent of top-10 finishes in the opening race.
Michael Lewis (No. 98 Competition Motorsports/Curb-Agajanian Porsche 911) knew what he had to do at the start of the wet morning race, and began at the drop of the green flag, defending his pole starting position.
As the race progressed he easily built up a healthy gap between himself and the rest of the field, eventually passing the back of the field to score another flag to flag first place finish. The win was his fourth of the season, having impressed at every step as he has made his move from formula cars to Porsche competition.
David Calvert-Jones (No. 12 Wheels Up Competition Motorsports Porsche 911) joined Lewis at the podium with a third place Platinum Masters Class finish after driving to a ninth place overall finish.
In the Gold Class battle, Michael Zuieback (No. 2 Discount Tire / Competition Motorsports Porsche 911) led the Competition Motorsports effort with a fifth place finish after moving up from his ninth place starting position and posting an excellent drive in just his second race weekend of the season. The rest of the drivers also worked tirelessly through the traffic to improve their finishing positions as Fred Poordad (No. 02 Affinity Motorsports/TLI /Competition Motorsports Porsche 911) finished sixth, while Alessandro Chioccheti (No. 49 Competition Motorsports Porsche 911) was right behind in seventh place. Next was Blair Chang (No. 09 The Agency/Competition Motorsports Porsche 911) with a solid 10th place finish and Mike McAlister (No. 32 Competition Motorsports Porsche 911) and Chris Pedersen (No. 5 Discount Tire / Competition Motorsports Porsche 911) rounded out Race 1 with 13th and 17th finishing positions respectively.
After a morning race opened the day, Race 2 was staged under the lights, starting just after dusk. After holding the lead for a majority of the race, including defending on the restart from a singular caution period, Lewis ultimately took home a second place finish in his very first night race, adding to his ever-growing list of podiums.
Calvert-Jones faced some bad racing luck as he was spun on the opening lap and had to give up eight positions. He worked tirelessly the rest of the short 45-minute race to regain ground and ultimately settled for 14th place.
Fred Poordad was the highest finisher in Gold Class competition as he drove a clean race to a seventh place result. Not far behind was Chioccheti who fought hard to score an 11th at the checkered flag. Zuieback showcased more strong racecraft, but an incident on the last lap ultimately forced him to accept a 13thplace result, while Chang, McAlister and Pedersen all delivered strong drives to finish 15th, 16th and 17th respectively.
“All eight drivers did a great job in both races today,” said a pleased Team Manager Bob Faieta after Race 2. “Eight drivers came home safe with two drivers on their class podiums in really tough conditions in the first race. Michael Lewis ran a great race. Michael Zuieback did an outstanding job in Race 1 – probably the race of his life. Congratulations to him. That second race was a definite nail biter. Great job by Michael Lewis again; he finished second and is still second in overall points and really close to first. It was a great job by all of the drivers tonight, so we are now really looking forward to ending the season well in Atlanta!”
The team has a short break before they head to Road Atlanta to finish off the season on October 2-3.