Magnus Racing's Potter and Stanton score second podium of the year in Watkins GT
August 14, 2011 (Watkins Glen, NY) - Saturday afternoon's Canadian Tire 200 at The Glen became another fuel mileage game for the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series' GT class, and it worked out nearly to perfection for John Potter and Craig Stanton as the two drove the no. 44 Magnus Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup to a third place finish in the two-hour race.
Starting from ninth place in the twenty-two car GT field, Potter was called into the pits during an early full-course caution to take fuel. The race restarted with Potter in 12th position, and throughout the next hour he advanced the Magnus Racing Porsche up through the field to the second position. Just past the one hour mark, Potter turned the car over to Stanton, who came out of the pits in 11th place - but with enough fuel to make it to the checkered flag.
The final hour would be caution free, and the Magnus Racing Porsche was one of few GT cars that could make it the entire distance without conserving fuel. Up to sixth position with thirty minutes remaining, Stanton would benefit in the final ten minutes when three GT cars ahead of him would be forced to make pit stops for fuel.
Withstanding pressure from the no. 70 Mazda of Jonathan Bomarito, Stanton would take the checkered flag in third place, taking the second Rolex Series podium of the season for Magnus Racing. At the line, Stanton was a scant 12 seconds behind the winning no. 67 TRG Porsche and 10 seconds behind the runner-up no. 88 Autohaus Camaro.
"The strategy call at the beginning of the race to pit for fuel was definitely the right call, and set up a really great result for us," said Potter. "All the credit to the guys for the great strategy and for two great pitstops today. Our Magnus Racing Porsche was really good here at Watkins Glen, and both Craig and I were able to run consistently fast times while getting great fuel mileage. That helped us to get this great result, which is what we have been after for several races now. And, that is also one podium for the green Magnus Porsche and one for the grey one. I think we'll be keeping grey for another race or two!"
The finish also moves Potter and Stanton to fourth in the GT class championship with two races left. The duo is now 19 points behind the GT class leaders Bill Lester and Jordan Taylor in the no. 88 Autohaus Camaro, with two races remaining in the Rolex Series championship.
"I knew that when I got into the car that we were probably okay on fuel, and I could just go for it," said Stanton. "There were a bunch of guys ahead of us who couldn't make it to the end without some yellow, but they were cutting it close. All of a sudden with three laps left, we went from sixth to third. We had one of the Mazdas behind us, but there was no way I was going to give up a podium spot today. The guys did an awesome job today, John drove a great first stint, and we finished ahead of some guys in the championship battle. I am really looking forward to Montreal now!"