Challenging weekend for Magnus Racing at Grand Prix of Miami March 8, 2010 (Salt Lake City, Utah) -- What began as a very promising weekend for the No.44 Magnus Racing Porsche GT3 Cup, with a tenth-place qualifying run at the hands of John...
Challenging weekend for Magnus Racing at Grand Prix of Miami
March 8, 2010 (Salt Lake City, Utah) -- What began as a very promising weekend for the No.44 Magnus Racing Porsche GT3 Cup, with a tenth-place qualifying run at the hands of John Potter for the Rolex Sports Car Series Presented by Crown Royal Cask No.16's Grand Prix of Miami, turned around very quickly as Craig Stanton made heavy contact with the front straightaway retaining wall during Sunday morning practice. A tire failure at nearly 150mph meant Stanton could do little as the Porsche registered a 7G impact with the concrete wall.
However, the day was not over yet for Magnus Racing. With the car returned via flatbed to the garage, the team got started on the very large task of making the car ready to race for the afternoon. There were several passersby who remarked that it would take a miracle to get the car prepared in time for the 5pm starting time, as well as several who felt that it couldn't be done.
At 5pm, the repaired car lined up on the pit straightaway just in time for the national anthem on Homestead's front straightaway. In a few short hours, the team had replaced all of the right side suspension and brake components, the front bumper, splitter, radiator, right front fender, right door, as well as engine and transmission. In short, the team had rebuilt 75% of the car in a time frame when most would feel lucky to replace just one of those items.
"Simply put, they did an unbelievable job," said Potter, team owner of Magnus Racing. "John Bedell and the rest of the crew have shown each time that when they are under pressure and there is major work that has to be done, they get it done. I couldn't ask for a better crew."
The No.44 Porsche took the green flag but nearly immediately there were lingering effects from the morning's crash. Throughout the first 45 minutes, the car was in and out of the pits making more repairs but by the time that Stanton took over the car around the 45 minute mark, all was well with the car and Stanton was posting lap times equivalent to the leading cars. However, well down in the order, the team elected to simply collect laps and collect points as other cars dropped out of the race. When the checkered flew, the team breathed a collective sigh of relief and recorded what may well be the most satisfying 14th place they have ever recorded.
"Those guys just never quit," said Stanton, following the race. "They just kept plugging away and plugging away until the car was right again. It gives me such confidence as a driver to know that we have the best crew in the paddock right here."
Potter, Stanton, and the rest of Magnus Racing will see action on April 8-10 at the Porsche 250 at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama.
-source: magnus racing