Potter and Stanton come home seventh in Montreal
August 21, 2011 (Salt Lake City, Utah) - Heading north of the border, Magnus Racing drivers John Potter and Craig Stanton arrived at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve with plenty of momentum following their podium finsh last weekend at Watkins Glen International.
The no. 44 Magnus Racing Porsche 911 GT3 came off of the trailer well, with Stanton setting the third quickest time in the Friday morning practice session, and with Potter topping the Trueman / Akin session for Pro-Am drivers. In qualifying, Potter would put the Magnus Racing Porsche ninth on the GT grid for the Montreal 200.
At the start of the Montreal 200, Potter enjoyed a clean start and steadily moved up through the field throughout the first hour. As differing pit and fuel strategies began to be played out by the GT teams, Potter put in a long stint and would ultimately lead the GT race for a brief period of time before turning the car over to Stanton under green flag conditions.
Stanton rejoined the race in ninth position but would race his way to third position, challenging for the lead in the final thirty minutes behind the battle between the no. 57 Stevenson Camaro and the no. 70 Speedsource Mazda. However, a late race stop for fuel would cause Stanton to rejoin the race in 8th position, picking off one car on the final lap to cross the line in seventh. The result was the tenth top-ten finish of the year for the Magnus Racing Porsche.
"We had a strong race and a good strategy today in Montreal," said Potter. "There was some chaos in my stint out there - a lot of contact around me with the other GT cars, and it's always interesting with the Daytona Prototypes here because it's pretty narrow and there are concrete walls everywhere. It was nice to lead, but I just wanted to keep the car in good shape and turn it over to Craig in a good position."
Stanton, who ran in a podium position in the Magnus Racing Porsche until he needed a splash for fuel with only a few minutes remaining, was disappointed to miss out a podium for the second straight weekend.
"The car was really good today," said Stanton. "I thought we had a really great shot at a podium or maybe even a win, but the fuel mileage caught up with us at the end. A yellow would have helped, but we really needed one that was longer than two laps. It's a little disappointing but we'll be back strong at Mid-Ohio."
With only one race remaining in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, Potter and Stanton sit fifth in the championship standings, 17 points behind points leaders Bill Lester and Jordan Taylor in the no. 88 Autohaus Camaro. Potter is also second in the Trueman / Akin standings for Pro-Am drivers.
"Certainly, it does look like a bit of a long shot for us to have a shot at the championship," said Potter. "But we aren't out of it, and anything can happen. I'm proud that in our second season we are in a position to challenge for a championship, which is a demonstration of how hard the guys have been working and how good of a car they give Craig and I. I'm excited to see what happens at Mid-Ohio next month."