Virginia International Raceway
Brumos Racing Delivers a Top Five Finish in Wet & Wild VIR Race
Jacksonville, FL: Brumos Racing can claim a history at Virginia International Raceway that is unmatched by any of their current GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series competitors, dating back to 1971 and IMSA Championship days. As a result, the current day Brumos Racing team is well versed in the challenges presented by the historic Danville track. The team brought their 2011 Brumos Porsche 911 GT3 back to VIR for Round Five of the season, ready to return the traditional white, red and blue Brumos livery to the VIR podium. The team was undaunted by a forecast that called for rain, confident in their drivers’ capabilities and in their car. A series of improvements in the pre-race practice sessions yielded positive results, enabling Andrew Davis to qualify the #59 in 5th place.
As the green flag dropped under heavy rain, Davis moved into the lead. Due to the hazardous conditions, officials put the course under yellow, hoping for a break in the downpour. During that 16 lap full course caution, Davis was assessed a controversial stop and go penalty for passing before the start. Brumos appealed the penalty, as team owner Dan Davis explained, “We felt Andrew’s move was more of a technical violation as it was not an attempt to improve his position. Given the conditions, he just had no visibility at all.” The team’s appeal was denied and the penalty was served when green flag racing resumed.
Davis completed his required 30 minutes to earn points before handing the #59 off to Leh Keen for the finish. The team’s strategy to change from rain tires early paid off and Keen was able to work his way back up through the field as the track began to dry. His lap times quickly began to improve and he moved the #59 up position by position. Late in the race he went off course to avoid another GT car that was spinning, but was able to get back on track without damage. He immediately set about regaining lost ground while avoiding the numerous incidents that occurred in the closing laps of the race. As the checkered flag dropped, he had worked his way back up into 5th place, matching the #59’s season best finish to date.
’... I've been in more rain races at VIR than at any other track ...
Despite the harsh conditions of the opening laps, Andrew Davis described his stint as the easy part of the race, saying, “VIR is one of my favorite tracks, but I’ve been in more rain races at VIR than at any other track, so it was no real surprise to me that the start was as messy as it was. The conditions were just horrible, with no visibility and a very slick track. I was excited to be able to move into the lead on the opening lap, but unfortunately, after that, it went yellow for the rest of my stint, so it actually became pretty boring. The real workload went on to Leh, and he did a great job. Those last ten laps he really showed what he was made of, to be able to stay in front of some hard-charging cars and bring us home in 5th place. I can’t say enough about our crew and how hard they worked to give me a good car for qualifying and an even better car in the race, both in wet and in dry conditions. This really puts us in an upswing and we will take this momentum and carry it forward into our next race at Lime Rock and work on getting that first podium for Brumos.”
Keen added his own praise for his teammates, saying, “Our pit stops at this race were great and the team as a whole has really come together these last few races. This was a very tough race! Considering we had an off course incident and a penalty, to get a top five is actually a really good result. I’m happy with our 5th place – you have to get in the top five before you are in a position to get on the podium, so I’d say we are definitely on our way to the podium and then we’ll be winning races. We came out ahead of some very strong cars this time – now I’m really looking forward to Lime Rock and the rest of the season to show everyone just what the Brumos #59 Porsche can do.”
The 5th place finish at VIR puts Brumos only six points out of second place in team standings as they prepare for their next race. May 30th and will be broadcast on SPEED TV.
-source: brumos racing