Team Cadillac Brings Momentum to Mid-Ohio SPEED GT Race Cadillac Aims to Continue Podium Streak at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course LEXINGTON, Ohio - After back-to-back races on city streets, Team Cadillac will be racing over hill and dale on May 20...
Team Cadillac Brings Momentum to Mid-Ohio SPEED GT Race
Cadillac Aims to Continue Podium Streak at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
LEXINGTON, Ohio - After back-to-back races on city streets, Team Cadillac will be racing over hill and dale on May 20 when the SCCA SPEED World Challenge GT returns to the roller coaster Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Going into the fourth round of the SPEED GT series, Cadillac has posted a win in Long Beach, Calif., by Ron Fellows and runner-up finishes in Sebring, Fla., and St. Petersburg, Fla., by Andy Pilgrim and Johnny O'Connell respectively. This fast start in the 10-race series has launched Cadillac into the lead in the manufacturers championship and propelled Pilgrim to third in the drivers' standings.
"We're fortunate to have a great stable of drivers racing for Team Cadillac, and Johnny O'Connell will be the guest driver for the Mid-Ohio race," said Team Cadillac program manager Dave Spitzer. "Our strategy is clear: We have three championship-winning drivers sharing the No. 16 Cadillac CTS-V throughout the season, and Andy is doing a great job as always in the No. 1 Cadillac CTS-V.
"The team loves racing at Mid-Ohio because it's close to home," Spitzer noted. "It's a great environment and we have lots of friends and family there to support the team. We've tested and raced there previously, so we have developed good setups for the track. It's a circuit that rewards momentum, so even a tiny mistake can hurt a car's performance all the way around the track. That's one of the reasons why the Team Cadillac driver roster is such an asset."
The record book supports Spitzer's optimism. Last year a trio of Cadillac CTS-Vs raced at Mid-Ohio and finished second, third and fifth.
This year's Mid-Ohio race will mark O'Connell's second start of the season with Team Cadillac. He'll be doing double-duty, driving the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R with teammate Ron Fellows in Sunday's American Le Mans at Mid-Ohio. O'Connell has a formidable record at the Ohio track - he and Fellows are undefeated in the four ALMS races held there.
"My agenda is the same as it was in St. Petersburg - go as hard and as fast as I can, stay out of trouble, and bring home some points for Cadillac," said O'Connell. "I really enjoyed racing the CTS-V in St. Pete. But for an electronics glitch, either Cadillac could have won. I had a good time, and I was happy to finish second.
"I've raced at Mid-Ohio since I was in college, so I'm very familiar with the track," O'Connell noted. "I understand it's been repaved since the last time I raced there, so I'm looking forward to going back."
Both Cadillac drivers have respect for the scenic 2.25-mile, 13-turn circuit in the Ohio countryside. "Mid-Ohio is a very technical, very challenging course," said Pilgrim, the reigning SPEED GT champion. "If you rush the car at Mid-Ohio, you tend to pay for it with slow times and hot tires.
"I'm happy that I'm third in the drivers' standings after three races," Pilgrim reported. "I had a good race in Sebring followed by two average finishes. If anyone had bet me that we'd run three SPEED GT races without a single full-course caution, I'd have lost money. The fact that we've been caution-free this season is a testament to the drivers and cars in the series."
"Certainly those long, caution-free runs have helped us," noted Spitzer. "We strive to have consistent setups that help the cars to achieve good results through the entire race. We're still smiling about Ron Fellow's victory in Long Beach with a last-lap pass, and Cadillac has shared that excitement using race-win ads in USA Today and AutoWeek. We're proud to spotlight the SPEED World Challenge and help to build awareness of our breed of racing."
The SPEED World Challenge GT race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course will start at 6:05 p.m. EDT on Saturday, May 20. The 50-minute race will be televised tape-delayed on Saturday, May 27, at 9 p.m. EDT on the SPEED Channel.