target practice Terry Borcheller and Bell Motorsports survived three hits to finish ninth in the Rolex Sports Car Series race at Watkins Glen International on June 20. Borcheller, of Gainesville, Ga., drove almost four hours of the six-hour race...
Terry Borcheller and Bell Motorsports survived three hits to finish ninth in the Rolex Sports Car Series race at Watkins Glen International on June 20. Borcheller, of Gainesville, Ga., drove almost four hours of the six-hour race on the historic New York track.
Forest Barber of Fort Worth, Texas, qualified the No. 54 Bell Motorsports Pontiac-powered Doran JE4 16th on the grid, with a lap time of one minute 54.705 seconds on the 3.4-mile road course. He was hit on the first lap, pitted for a new right-front tire and returned to the race near the back of the field, only to be hit again. Borcheller took over after 38 minutes and drove a triple stint, regaining two lost laps and taking the lead at the halfway point of the race. 20 minutes later, he was hit by another car and dropped back to third. Andy Pilgrim of Delray Beach, Fla., took the wheel at 3h43, but was delayed when a wheel nut stuck, a result of the contact during Borcheller's stint. Borcheller drove the final 46 minutes, finishing ninth.
"Forest had every amount of bad luck possible at the start," Borcheller said. "I drove as hard as I possibly could drive and I had to take a lot of chances because we were so far down. I was driving like a madman! Thomas [Blam] was great on strategy and the team was really good with the stops. The car was absolutely killer; it was hooked up."
Borcheller started the weekend with a fifth-place finish in the Grand-Am Cup race at Watkins Glen. After winning the last race at le Circuit Mont-Tremblant in Québec, the No. 11 Powell Motorsport Cadillac CTS-V was penalized with a total of 250 pounds added to the base weight of the car and a 700 rpm reduction.
Devon Powell of Port Perry, Ont., started the Cadillac 52nd on the 57-car grid after the qualifying session was cut short, leaving him without a complete qualifying lap. He charged through the field to take the lead 38 minutes into the three-hour race, then dropped back to second on a pitstop. Borcheller took over at 1h34, but had to pit after a hit from another car left him with a flat tire. He was able to make up track position to finish fifth.
"On my first or second lap under green, I was hit by an ST car and got a flat so I had to go all the way to the back," Borcheller said. "Thankfully it happened at a good spot and I was able to get into the pits quickly and we didn't go a lap down. Then we had another full-course yellow that caught me back up. Had we had any green laps at the end of the race, we could have stood a chance to finish on the podium, but with all the restrictions I think it would be hard to do that."
Borcheller will return to the American Le Mans Series after a three-month break. He and Johnny Mowlem of Maidenhead, England, will drive the No. 63 ACEMCO Motorsports Saleen S7R in the ALMS race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, on June 27.
"It's one of my favorite tracks. One of my best go-kart races was there - I started 69th and finished second. If I'd had one more lap, I would have won it," Borcheller recalled.
"The track has a real good flow to it, it has some great technical corners and sections, and it's just real busy. Jeff [Giangrande, team owner] and the team have put a lot of time, money and energy into getting the car ready for Mid-Ohio, so I'm excited to see the fruits of our testing and hard work."
Borcheller will also drive a Pro Formula Mazda in the Star Mazda Series race at Mid-Ohio for car owner Forest Barber.
details (all times EDT)
The American Le Mans Series race is scheduled for Sunday, June 27 from 1 pm to 3:45 pm on the 2.25-mile Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. The race will be televised live on CBS Sports from 2 pm to 4 pm.
The Star Mazda Series race is set for Saturday, June 26 from 3:35 pm to 4:20 pm on the Mid-Ohio track. It will be telecast on Speed Channel on Sunday, July 11 at noon.