Watkins Glen: SpeedSource race report

SpeedSource Scores Fourth Place The SpeedSource team arrived at Watkins Glen riding momentum earned from a win at Mazda Raceway. Starting from 7th for the Sahlen's Six Hours of the Glen, the ...

SpeedSource Scores Fourth Place

The SpeedSource team arrived at Watkins Glen riding momentum earned from a win at Mazda Raceway. Starting from 7th for the Sahlen's Six Hours of the Glen, the #70 Castrol Syntec Mazda RX8 charged its way through the field scoring a 4th place finish in the GT class. The finish helps the team gain valuable points for the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No.16 season championship. SpeedSource has now finished in the Top 10 for three out of five races this season.

By managing cautions and pit strategy during the first few hours of the race, the #70 Castrol Syntec Mazda RX-8 worked its way to the top spots in the GT field, eventually leading the race for 17 laps. The car continued to contend near the front of GT for the majority of the race until jumping the leader for first place with great pit strategy during the final quarter of the race. Things looked promising for the last leg of the race; however a pit lane speeding violation dropped the car to seventh in GT. "We fought hard all day, and even though we might not have had the winning car, thanks to some great pit strategy we led several times including late in race. Unfortunately a pit speeding penalty dropped us from first to seventh but we still ended up with a solid forth place."

In a long endurance format race, the SpeedSource Castrol Syntec Mazda RX-8 relied on consistent driving from the pair of Nick Ham and Sylvain Tremblay as well as solid race strategy and pit stops by the crew. Although the Mazda did not have the all out speed to match the other manufacturers, the car was well balanced for the long run. "It was a long race and anything could have happened. We were pleased with our performance in the long runs of the race and I think we managed our tire wear issue well," stated Team Technical Director David Haskell.

Team owner and driver Sylvain Tremblay recalls: "The crew did a great job in prepping the car. At the end of the day, we just didn't have the outright speed for the Porsches but we gained good championship points. The fourth place finish is a fantastic performance and I am happy for the team and our valuable sponsors."

Running an equally competitive race was the #69 SpeedSource FXDD Mazda RX-8 of defending race winners Emil Assentato, Nick Longhi, and Jeff Segal. Driving the highest qualifying Mazda, Segal started the race and quickly challenged for position in GT. Using great strategy and flawless pit stops, the car continued to run well throughout the race earning a 6th place finish in GT.

The Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No.16 heads to Mid-Ohio next.

-credit: ss

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Emil Assentato , Nick Longhi , David Haskell , Sylvain Tremblay , Nick Ham
Teams SpeedSource