Silverstone: Patrick Long race report

Patrick Long Scores Podium Finish at Silverstone 1000 Km Endurance Race SILVERSTONE, U.K. American Patrick Long, the 23-year-old factory Porsche driver from Southern California, scored an impressive third place GT Class finish setting...

Patrick Long Scores Podium Finish at Silverstone 1000 Km Endurance Race

SILVERSTONE, U.K. American Patrick Long, the 23-year-old factory Porsche driver from Southern California, scored an impressive third place GT Class finish setting fastest GT lap as well in last weekend's Silverstone 1000 km race, part of the LeMans Endurance Series held across Europe. Long drove a Porsche 911 RSR for Farnbacher Racing, teaming with co-drivers Lars Nielson and Torkal Thyrring.

Long started sixth on the grid at the famed Silverstone Grand Prix circuit. During his stint, he hustled the Porsche up to second position, then handed the car over to Nielson and Thyrring for an hour each. When Long re-entered the car, the team was in fifth position. Undaunted, Long pulled a double-stint charge, unlapping himself from the second-place car and coming within 40 seconds of the second step on podium. He finished third, setting fastest lap in the process.

"It was great to race in Europe again," Long said, "Particularly on the Silverstone GP circuit. More importantly, though, it was great to help Farnbacher Racing achieve a podium finish, while setting fastest lap. The team was really excited at our result."

The past two months have been hectic for Long. Since winning the GT class at the 24 Hours of LeMans in June with Petersen White Lightning Racing, he has endured an ultra-competitive season with The Racer's Group in the American LeMans Series. In the five ALMS races since the French endurance classic, Long, and teammate Cort Wagner, have placed fourth at Mid Ohio, sixth at Lime Rock, fifth at Infineon, fifth at Portland, and fifth at Mosport. The team has been on-pace at every circuit, but lady luck has continually scowled at the team penalties, wet-tire shuffles, accidents, flat-tires, back-of-the grid starts, unlucky yellow-flags you name it. All have thwarted Long's efforts to score a podium. Currently, Long is seventh overall in the ALMS GT points chase.

"We're building a great team in the TRG ALMS effort," Long said. "I really feel this is the most competitive GT field in history and to salvage consistency is great. But I want victories. We've hired new staff, and I feel I'm at the top of my game. Podiums are right around the corner, and Road America this weekend has got to be the ice-breaker."

Last year, long was a member of the Porsche Junior team. Based in Germany, he competed in the Porsche German and British Carerra Cups, with wins at Norisring and Snetterton. In five Supercup races (run during F1 events), Long scored podium finishes at Monaco and the Nurburgring.

The past six years Long has lived and raced in Europe, where he has won international events in karting, Formula Ford, Formula Renault, the German Porsche Carrera Cup and, with his Le Mans GT win, endurance sports cars. For more information on Patrick Long visit his website at: www.patricklong.com.

-gm-

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Series ELMS