Darren Law Pulls Porsche Powered Double Duty Weekend in Grand-Am Porsche endurance specialist Darren Law, in an effort to accrue as many points as possible for the annual Porsche Cup competition, competed in both the GT and Daytona ...
Darren Law Pulls Porsche Powered Double Duty Weekend in Grand-Am
Porsche endurance specialist Darren Law, in an effort to accrue as many points as possible for the annual Porsche Cup competition, competed in both the GT and Daytona Prototype classes this weekend in the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve event at the immaculate Barber Motorsports Park outside Birmingham, Alabama. Darren finished ninth in the #17 Doncaster Racing Porsche GT3 Cup car in the GT class part of the Porsche 250 Presented by Bradley Arant event with Greg Wilkins and David Lacey on Saturday. Then, despite a failed cool suit system and soaring cockpit temperatures, Darren went on to finish fourth in the Daytona Prototype race on Sunday with teammate David Donohue and the #58 Red Bull Brumos Porsche Riley.
GT Class Race Action
With the GT class and Daytona Prototype races spilt for the Barber weekend, as they have been for much of the 07 season, Law saw the perfect opportunity to capitalize on as many Porsche points as possible and took a seat with the Doncaster team with which he has driven before. Darren's first race of the weekend was on Saturday with the Doncaster team. He took to the cockpit of the #17 Porsche GT3 Cup on the second round of stops after both David Lacey (who started) and Greg Wilkins had already driven stints on lap fifty of the ninety five lap event. Law, who exited the pits in tenth, settled into a rhythm quickly and tried to work his way forward. Darren found that as the race went on, the track conditions continued to get worse and the balance of the car went toward oversteer in almost every part of the circuit. Darren kept the #17 in the hunt however, and brought the car to the checkered flag in ninth.
Daytona Prototype Main Event
Law's main race of the weekend was in the Daytona Prototype class where he and teammate David Donohue have been competitive throughout the 07 season. Darren qualified the #58 Brumos seventh on the grid of seventeen prototype machines on Saturday, just prior to the GT event, and took the green flag for the start of the 2.5 hour race early Sunday afternoon. Darren was able to work his way to fifth within the first few laps, and held that position until the first round of pit stops on lap twelve during a full course yellow.
With track position being so important at the 2.3 mile Barber circuit, that is difficult to pass on, the Brumos team elected not to change tires and only added fuel to the #58. The time savings of not changing tires or driver allowed Law to leave pit lane in third, gaining valuable track position. However, many of the other front running teams changed both tires and drivers, meaning that Law would have to make sure that he kept the Brumos Porsche and its Hoosier slicks as fresh as possible throughout his stint.
With a brief run in second place, Law maintained his third position for his entire forty six-lap stint despite his cool suit failing early on. Darren was exposed to the full intensity of the cockpit temperatures, but continued to turn competitive times.
Law turned the #58 Red Bull liveried Porsche Riley over to Donohue on lap forty-seven, clearly beginning to feel the affects of heat exhaustion, but having kept the Brumos entry in third. Donohue left the pit in fourth after a change of tires and taking on a full tank of fuel.
David would eventually have a stint long battle with the third placed running #10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley of Max Angelelli and the fifth placed championship leading #01 TELMEX Lexus Riley of Scott Pruett. Despite pressure from Pruett for almost all fifty-two of the laps in his stint, David maintained fourth to the checkered flag, giving the #58 Brumos Porsche Riley yet another strong 2007 finish.
"This was a tough race mainly because of the heat. It made things difficult with both the handling of the car as well as the physical aspect behind the wheel. Then when you add in the failure of my cool suit, it was a hard stint. The guys gave me a great car and it was very consistent. I am really glad I got to run the GT race the day before because that helped us to make decisions on changes we were going to do the car to compensate for the conditions. Were happy with another finish inside the top five."
Info and Upcoming
Darren has a couple weeks off before travelling to Montreal, Quebec Canada for the Rolex series' first appearance at the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve the weekend of August 3rd. Log onto www.grand-am.com for more information on the upcoming Montreal race, or to see more comprehensive results of the Barber Motorsports Park event.