Two Cadillacs Finish on Mid-Ohio SPEED GT Podium Heinricy Second, Papis Third and Pilgrim Fifth for Team Cadillac LEXINGTON, Ohio, May 21, 2005 - With a pair of Cadillac drivers on the podium and a trio of CTS-Vs among the top-five finishers,...
Two Cadillacs Finish on Mid-Ohio SPEED GT Podium
Heinricy Second, Papis Third and Pilgrim Fifth for Team Cadillac
LEXINGTON, Ohio, May 21, 2005 - With a pair of Cadillac drivers on the podium and a trio of CTS-Vs among the top-five finishers, Team Cadillac took another stride toward the SCCA SPEED World Challenge GT championship today at the manicured Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. GM Performance Division director John Heinricy was runner-up in a guest appearance with Team Cadillac, while full-time drivers Max Papis and Andy Pilgrim finished third and fifth respectively in the fourth round of the SPEED GT. Cadillac moved into first place in the manufacturers championship with a four-point margin over Porsche and Dodge.
Heinricy started on the outside of the front row and stalked the Porsche 911 of race winner Wolf Henzler throughout the 29-lap race. After two extended caution periods, Heinricy's run fell .657 seconds short of victory.
"My CTS-V was everything I could ask for, and the team picked the right setup for the race," said Heinricy, a multiple winner at Mid-Ohio. "I concentrated on saving the tires in the early stages of the race and cooled them down during the caution periods. When it got down to seven laps to the finish, it was time to go. I pushed as hard as I could, but the Porsche was just too fast today."
Papis had a clear view of the action as he ran in third place from flag to flag. "I was minding my tires at the beginning of the race and I was waiting to see if John could put pressure on the guy in front," he said. "That's two podium finishes in a row for me, and our goal is to win the manufacturers championship for Cadillac, so it was a good day."
With today's results, Team Cadillac has now scored six podium finishes in four events this season.
"We had strong runs by all three Cadillac drivers," said Team Cadillac program manager Dave Spitzer. "I wish John and Max could have gotten around the Porsche, but it appeared that he had a lot in reserve. We gave our guys the best cars we could, and I'm very proud of the team and the level of preparation. That was everything we've got, but it wasn't quite enough today."
Pilgrim started fourth, lost a position to Corvette driver Lou Gigliotti on the second lap, and then held his ground to finish fifth. Second in the drivers championship going into the Mid-Ohio round, Pilgrim was carrying 150 pounds of success ballast.
"It was a fairly uneventful race for me, yet stressful at the same time because I had cars right behind me and right in front of me for most of the race," Pilgrim reported. "I wasn't surprised when Gigliotti passed me because he had a problem in qualifying. At the end I was trying very hard to pass him, but it wasn't possible with the REWARDS weight my car is carrying, especially through the left-right-left corners. All in all, it was a good finish."
The SPEED GT race at Mid-Ohio will be televised on the SPEED Channel at 4 p.m. EDT on Saturday, May 28. The next round of the 11-race series will be the Grand Prix of Cleveland, held at the Burke Lakefront Airport on June 24-26.