TRG Wins GT in Mexico City Mexico City, Mexico -- TRG's Kelly Collins and Paul Edwards drove their number 64/iRise/Pontiac GTO.R to victory today at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in round two of the Grand American Rolex Series presented by Crown...
TRG Wins GT in Mexico City
Mexico City, Mexico -- TRG's Kelly Collins and Paul Edwards drove their number 64/iRise/Pontiac GTO.R to victory today at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in round two of the Grand American Rolex Series presented by Crown Royal Reserve. Marc Bunting and Andy Lally finished a strong third to take the GT points lead back to North America.
At the drop of the green flag, Kelly Collins, starting from pole position fell back to fourth place. The Californian was able to fight his way back to second before the first caution. On lap 46, the first full course yellow of the race flew, the TRG crew made a great strategy call to bring the two GTO.Rs in late into the pace car period. When the two cars pitted, Paul Edwards was able to leave the pits in first place. Edwards drove smart, consistent laps nursing a car that was going away to defend his win from last year.
The pit stop did not go as well for the number 65/TRG/F1 Air/Alpine Bagel/GTO.R. Trouble getting Andy Lally buckled in during the driver change cost the pair second place and they eventually had to fight back to take the last step on the podium. Marc Bunting put in an excellent drive to start the race, running consistent lap times to turn the car over to Lally in second. Lally rejoined the race in sixth and was able to drive the GTO.R back up to third place.
Andy Lally, #65/TRG/F1 Air/Alpine Bagel/iRise/Pontiac GTO.R, "The race was really going our way at the beginning. Marc did an excellent job and brought the car into the pits in second place. We had trouble with my seat insert and we took too long getting me belted in, we gave away a win today. It is nice to leave with the points lead, but we left win on the track."
Marc Bunting, #65/TRG/F1 Air/Alpine Bagel/iRise/Pontiac GTO.R, "Third is not bad today, although we had a car that could win. The car was great for me, I was able to run consistent laps and it never really fell off performance. We had that difficult pit stop, but the team did a great job with the strategy and it is nice to take the points lead back home."
Paul Edwards, #64/TRG/iRise/Pontiac GTO.R, "I got the car in the lead and was able to run good laps and bring it home. The car was falling off a little, we were able to run 31s easy in practice, but were struggling to keep pace with 32s during the race. The strategy gave us track position and some luck with the BMW falling out didn't hurt, other than that we had a third place car."
Kelly Collins, #64/TRG/iRise/Pontiac GTO.R, "We played the strategy great today. The guys in the pits kept us out during the yellow until we got the wave-bye which was lucky for us as I really thought we only had a second or third place car today. There was a lot of craziness in traffic and the track got really greasy early on, but it is nice to get my first win in the Pontiac with TRG and iRise.
Kevin Buckler, TRG team owner, "It was great to defend our win here in Mexico City. The cars really performed well and the team had to overcome some hurdles, but both GTO.Rs made a great showing. We could have had a one-two finish today, but the driver change put us back with the 65. That was painful as Marc Bunting ran the best stint that I have ever seen him put together. The team made a great strategy call to bring the cars in after the wave-bye and put the 64 back out into the lead. It is nice to get the win with Paul and Kelly and go back to the states with the points lead with Marc and Andy for iRise."
Round three of the Grand Am series will be the Grand Prix of Miami held at Homestead Miami Speedway on March 25th.