TRG'S GRAND-AM KONI CHALLENGE SERIES TEAM READY FOR RESTART AFTER LONG BREAK PETALUMA, Calif.- It has been four long months since the Grand-Am KONI Challenge Series opened its season in the Fresh From Florida 200 at Daytona International ...
TRG'S GRAND-AM KONI CHALLENGE SERIES TEAM READY FOR RESTART AFTER LONG BREAK
PETALUMA, Calif.- It has been four long months since the Grand-Am KONI Challenge Series opened its season in the Fresh From Florida 200 at Daytona International Speedway, but TRG's Grand Sport (GS) program is ready for this weekend's restart at Lime Rock Park.
TRG will field a pair of entries in Monday's 2.5-hour race around the 1.53-mile, seven-turn road circuit at Lime Rock. Co-driving the No 39 DigiTrust Group/Adam's Polishes/Fox River Coffee/Sherab-Cando.com Porsche 997 will be Duncan Ende and Spencer Pumpelly, with Scott Schroeder and Peter Ludwig sharing the No. 41 Cohen Financial/Wolf-Tec Inc./www.WTinc.com/Ludwig Motorsports Porsche 997.
"I'm really impressed with the level of professionalism all of our drivers have projected during this unusually long break in the season," said TRG Team Manager Jason Myers. "They have maintained their level of fitness, training as often as possible, studying tracks and of course, getting behind the wheel as much as possible. It really shows how much they care about their performance with TRG and ultimately their racing careers."
Schroeder co-drove the No. 41 machine to an eighth-place finish with Andy Lally in the season opener at Daytona after starting from 42nd on the grid. He is joined for the first time in the No. 41 machine by New Paltz, N.Y. resident Peter Ludwig, who won the KONI Challenge GS race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca last year alongside Pumpelly and started and finished second in the Lime Rock GS race with Pumpelly while driving for Marcus Motorsports.
Pumpelly and Ende, meanwhile, swing back into KONI Challenge action looking for a bit of revenge after missing out on a potential victory in the Daytona season opener. Ende qualified 10th and kept the car within sight of the leaders throughout his stint before handing the controls over to Pumpelly to finish it out. Pumpelly drove the No. 39 machine all the way to the front of the field within the final half hour, only to have a terminal mechanical failure strike just seconds after taking the lead. They wound up 32nd in the GS race standings. Pumpelly is also currently second in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series GT standings with co-driver Tim George Jr. heading into this weekend's sixth round of the season, also at Lime Rock Park on Memorial Day Monday.
"We have worked on our engine reliability issues," Myers said. "The No. 39 car had a podium in the bag at Daytona before the pop, no questions asked. That much was proven by Schroeder and Lally climbing all the way from 42nd to finish in eighth position. We just need them to go the distance, and we believe we have now remedied this. All of us here at TRG-the engineering staff, the car chiefs and mechanics, etc.-have been working extremely hard trying to scrounge every ounce of performance we can out of the cars."
In last year's GS race at Lime Rock, both Ende and Schroeder led the historic event. Ende and Grant Maiman wound up fourth in the No. 39 TRG Porsche, while Schroeder and John Bibbo co-drove to a 20th-place result in the team's No. 40 machine.
"Last year, Duncan Ende and Scott Schroeder both led the race at Lime Rock and each are coming back for some sweet revenge," said TRG owner Kevin Buckler. "The drivers have been working hard on their fitness and the team has done everything it possibly could on the mechanical side. Everybody has been working really hard and we're ready for the race. We want this one bad."
The KONI Challenge Series GS race from Lime Rock will be televised on SPEED at 8:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, May 31. Live Timing & Scoring data from every session will also be available on www.grand-am.com.