SCC: Mosport: Automatic Racing preview

Automatic Racing Aiming for Second Straight Victory at Mosport BOWMANVILLE, Ontario -- After a brief two-week break, Automatic Racing's Jep Thornton and Jeff Segal hope to repeat their victorious result from Lime Rock at this weekend's...

Automatic Racing Aiming for Second Straight Victory at Mosport

BOWMANVILLE, Ontario -- After a brief two-week break, Automatic Racing's Jep Thornton and Jeff Segal hope to repeat their victorious result from Lime Rock at this weekend's 200-mile KONI Challenge race at Mosport International Raceway.

Lime Rock marked the first time that Automatic Racing has scored a win, and they aren't ready to give up the taste of victory. The team had a promising run last year at Mosport: Segal and Thornton drove to a finish of second in the No. 09 BMW M3 despite fighting setup issues all weekend. And the No. 99 M3 qualified on the front row and held down second for the first half of the race.

With such a solid history at Mosport, the odds might seem to be in Automatic Racing's favor. However, the team is the first to admit that Mosport won't be as easy to win as Lime Rock. Mosport's 2.459-mile circuit tends to favor the Ford Mustangs, unlike Lime Rock's short, BMW-friendly layout.

Still, Thornton and Segal are optimistic. "Right now, we've got a better race car than we've ever had before," said Thornton. "We also learned a lot here last year, and we know what needs to be done to turn that second place we got into a first. Since this track favors the Mustangs, strategy and fast pit stops are going to be a huge factor in our success."

Segal followed up his first professional win with a first-place finish in the Rolex Series GT Class during last weekend's 6 Hours at The Glen. Three wins in three weekends are definitely on his mind. "I'm going to try to keep up the momentum," said Segal of his recent successes. "I think we'll be strong at Mosport. I'm enthusiastic but also reserved because I know a lot of other teams will be working hard to beat us. Getting points is most important for us."

As always, Segal and Thornton won't be the only Automatic Racing pilots gunning for the front this weekend. Rob Finlay and Steve Cameron will be back in the No. 99 Mobile-Shop BMW M3, hoping to turn their luck around after a tough weekend at Lime Rock.

Charles Espenlaub and Charlie Putman will be sharing driving duties in the No. 91 M3. They finished 11th at Lime Rock after running in the top 10 most of the day, so they're also looking for a finish that better reflects their potential. Espenlaub and Putman currently sit 6th in points despite the setback at Lime Rock.

The 200-muile KONI Challenge race begins on Saturday, June 14, at 1:00 PM. Fans can keep track of Automatic Racing's progress in the race and throughout the season at www.AutomaticRacing.com.

-credit: ar

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Charles Espenlaub , Jep Thornton , Jeff Segal , Rob Finlay , Charlie Putman , Steve Cameron
Teams Automatic Racing