leader! Terry Borcheller claimed first place in the Rolex Sports Car Series driver standings with a solid win at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Va., on Oct. 5. The Phoenix driver has a three-point lead in the 2003 championship, with...
Terry Borcheller claimed first place in the Rolex Sports Car Series driver standings with a solid win at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Va., on Oct. 5. The Phoenix driver has a three-point lead in the 2003 championship, with one race (and 35 points) remaining this season.
Andy Pilgrim of Delray Beach, Fla., joined Borcheller for the Virginia race, driving the No. 54 Bell Motorsports Doran JE4. Borcheller's usual co-driver, Forest Barber of Fort Worth, Tex., practiced in the car, but asked Pilgrim to substitute for him in the race to give the team an extra edge.
Pilgrim qualified second on the 3.27-mile road course, but started from the pole position when the pole car's qualifying time was disallowed. He drove the first 50 minutes of the two-hour 45-minute race. Borcheller took the second stint, returning to the track in third place. He quickly moved to second place and held the position except during a mid-race fuel stop. Borcheller took the race lead at 2h10 and stayed ahead to the checkered flag.
"The win was especially gratifying," Borcheller said. "Andy Pilgrim was with us at Mont-Tremblant and he came to VIR to help us with the setup. Forest did a great job in practice - he was fast and his times were really competitive. He just opted to take advantage of Andy's experience; he wanted to give the team the best possible scenario to win the race. It was a real selfless act."
Borcheller and Barber started the weekend with a Grand-Am Cup race on Oct. 4. Barber qualified ninth in the GSII class in the No. 54 Bell Motorsports BMW M3. He started the race and worked up to second in class before heading in for a fuel stop after 73 minutes of the three-hour race. Unfortunately, the car ran out of fuel before it reached the pits, leaving Barber stalled on track. The crew sprinted over with fuel, but the team lost eight laps. Borcheller took the wheel at 1h30 and set the fastest GSII race lap as he drove to an 11th-place class finish.
"The Cup race was extremely disappointing," Borcheller reported. "Forest drove a great race, but he ran out of gas on the lap that we were bringing him into the pits. The window of opportunity is so small with the BMW because it's a stock fuel tank. It doesn't bobble; when it's out of gas, it's out. We had about a half-mile from the first burble until it was out of gas. But it says a lot for the team to be able to get fuel out there quickly."
Borcheller will drive the No. 63 ACEMCO Motorsports Ferrari 360 Modena GT in the 1000-mile Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta in Braselton, Ga., on Oct. 18.