Ludwig and Schroeder give TRG top-10 finish in Koni Challenge race at Barber Motorsports Park TRG Finished 1-2 at Laguna Seca Last Year BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - TRG drivers Peter Ludwig and Scott Schroeder finished ninth in today's Grand-Am ...
Ludwig and Schroeder give TRG top-10 finish in Koni Challenge race at Barber Motorsports Park
TRG Finished 1-2 at Laguna Seca Last Year BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - TRG drivers Peter Ludwig and Scott Schroeder finished ninth in today's Grand-Am Koni Challenge round six race at Barber Motorsports Park, as part of the Porsche 250 presented by Bradley Arant weekend. Duncan Ende and Spencer Pumpelly finished 13th.
Ludwig started today's race from the inside of row nine in the No. 41 Carlsen Porsche/Cohen Financial/Wolf-Tec Inc./www.WTInc.com/Ludwig-Motorsports Porsche 997. Early in the stint, Ludwig made an unscheduled pit stop to change a flat tire that was the result of contact with another car. Undaunted by the early set back, Ludwig continued to push and had the car as high as ninth when he came to pit lane for his final green flag pit stop. On lap 44, Ludwig brought the No. 41 machine to pit lane for four new Hoosier tires, a load of fuel, and put Schroeder in the car.
After the green flag pit stops cycled through, Schroeder started his 45-lap stint in 16th. Throughout his stint, he continued to turn consistently fast laps on pace with the race leaders. In fact, he turned TRG's fastest race lap with a 1:39.783 (80.317 mph) and this helped him climb through the field to finish ninth. Ludwig and Schroeder had the top finishing Porsche in the race.
"The start was uneventful," Ludwig said. "I passed a few cars and I went into five and a car turned down on me and broke a valve stem causing a flat. I had to pit. The team refueled and put on new tires. We stayed out longer than we anticipated with no yellows. I was able to regain some of the positions I had lost. The track is getting. I had a good time."
"Peter got out and the pit crew did a great job to get us out without losing a lap," Schroeder. "I got in the car with the sticker tires and I was able to maintain pace with the leaders. Halfway through my stint, about 45-minutes in, my rear tires were getting way too hot. So, I turned it down a notch. I thought I had something for the 91 car at the end, but I just didn't have the brakes to get it done. I cooked them a little. The TRG crew had some setbacks this weekend, but a top-10 is definitely something to be part of today."
Ende started 13th in the No. 39 Carlsen Porsche/The DigiTrust Group/Adam's Polishes/Fox River Coffee Porsche 997. Throughout his 44-lap stint, Ende fought some power issues, but still managed to have the car up to seventh when he made his green flag pit stop. On lap 44, Ende made his final stop and turned the No. 39 Porsche over Pumpelly. On pit lane, Pumpelly had difficulty re-firing the car and when he finally returned to the track he had dropped to 20th.
Throughout Pumpelly's stint, he did what he could to regain some of his lost positions, which included turning the No. 39 machine's fastest race lap with a 1:40.7424 (80.007 mph). Unfortunately, Pumpelly could not overcome some the early problems and finished 13th.
"It was a rough stint," Ende said. "We are so far down on power that there is nothing you can do. The people behind you are so much slower than you and the people in front are total garbage. You need to get lucky to get by them. There is only so much I can do if I am held up two seconds a lap behind somebody. I am so far behind on every straight away, that no matter how much of a run I get, I can't get by. It wasn't a good stint."
"It was pretty uneventful for me today," Pumpelly said. "I didn't have anyone ahead or behind me the whole time. It was more like doing a long time trial or a qualifying session. It was really strung out at that time, so there was really not that much to do but focus on consistent lap times and that is what we did. When we pitted, the engine was hot and we had trouble starting it. It was tough situation to get the car started. The guys did a great pit stop and the engine not firing cost us a lot of time. It was too bad; the guys had a lightening quick pit stop. We were going to improve our track position on a lot of guys, but the motor wouldn't fire. It really hurt. The car wasn't as good as it was in practice, not really sure what was going on. I wasn't running around any other cars so I am not sure where were down."
"The 41 guys had a good car today," Team Owner Kevin Buckler said. "Without the original incident and the contact we would have been running in the top five. We wouldn't have beat those Mustangs, no way, no how. We would have had the fastest non-Mustang. Scotty had some of the fastest laps of the race and some of the best I have ever seen from him. He is really coming on strong. Peter Ludwig was a real rock, I don't where those times came from, but I was very proud of him. Duncan drove his heart out, did a great job. The car was a little crippled, there was some oil on the back of it at the end and there was something going on - it was a little down on power. Spencer did a great job. Both he and Duncan were safe and smart and that is what we need to win races. It just wasn't our opportunity today.
The Koni Challenge series next heads to Iowa Speedway Aug. 10.