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St Pete PWC: McLaren’s Parente pulls stunning pass to win GT opener

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St Pete PWC: McLaren’s Parente pulls stunning pass to win GT opener
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Mar 11, 2017, 3:44 PM

Pirelli World Challenge champion Alvaro Parente got his 2017 campaign off to a winning start, passing poleman Daniel Mancinelli with a superb round-the-outside move to claim victory at St Petersburg.

#9 K-Pax Racing McLaren 650S GT3: Alvaro Parente
#31 TR3 Racing Ferrari 488 GT3: Daniel Mancinelli
#8 Cadillac Racing Cadillac ATS-VR GT3: Michael Cooper, #9 K-Pax Racing McLaren 650S GT3: Alvaro Parente
#93 RealTime Racing Acura NSX GT3: Peter Kox
#007 TRG Aston Martin Vantage GT3: James Davison
#58 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R: Patrick Long
#31 TR3 Racing Ferrari 488 GT3: Daniel Mancinelli
#9 K-Pax Racing McLaren 650S GT3: Alvaro Parente
#43 RealTime Racing Acura NSX GT3: Ryan Eversley, #16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R: Michael Schein
#2 CRP Racing Mercedes AMG GT3: Ryan Dalziel
#98 K-Pax Racing McLaren 650S: Mike Hedlund

Former GP3 racer Mancinelli (TR3 Racing Ferrari 488) led from his shock pole position, heading Pierre Kaffer (Magnus Racing Audi R8) and Parente’s K-PAX Racing McLaren 650S into Turn 1. Behind them, Patrick Long’s Porsche 911 pushed Alex Riberas’ Ferrari wide and down to eighth place, with James Davison’s Aston Martin benefitting from their clash to run fourth, with Johnny O’Connell (Cadillac) attacking him hard.

Kaffer clipped the rear of leader Mancinelli at Turn 1 on lap 2 after outbraking himself, which allowed Parente to nip past him into second. Moments later, Parente drove around the outside of Mancinelli with a sweet move at Turn 4.

Parente sprinted away from Mancinelli out front, with Kaffer now back in third. Davison toiled to keep O’Connell behind, with Bryan Sellers (McLaren) holding sixth until being passed by the aggressive Long at Turn 1 on lap four.

A full-course yellow was then required for Marko Radisic’s Ferrari catching fire on the start/finish straight.

Drama behind leader

The race restarted with Parente leading the way. Mancinelli had nothing for him, and defended his second position from Kaffer.

But Kaffer was badly baulked by a backmarker with 10 minutes remaining, dropping 2s behind Mancinelli, which he quickly clawed back.

Behind Davison in fourth, Long attacked O’Connell, hitting him at the final hairpin on lap 21. Long divebombed past O’Connell at Turn 1 on lap 23, but ran wide and slipped back behind him by the exit.

Long repassed him a lap later, barging his way past with door-to-door contact.

Davison passed Kaffer for third with a stunning late-braking move at Turn 1, with Long also trying to benefit – but only succeeded in clipped Kaffer.

Kaffer then suffered a right-rear puncture on the following lap, consequence of his collision with Long.

Davison and Long caught Mancinelli in the closing moments, with Davison trying his late-lunge move at Turn 1, which didn't pay off, but he got a great run out of Turn 3 and passed Mancinelli into Turn 4 and Long also got through.

With Mancinelli seemingly losing his rhythm, O’Connell then punted him down the escape road at Turn 8. Mancinelli finished 14th.

Parente won by over 10s, with Davison and Long separated by 0.24s at the finish. O’Connell took a contentious fourth ahead of Sellers and Riberas. Michael Cooper finished seventh in the second Cadillac, ahead of Peter Kox in the new Acura NSX.

Fastest lap – which meant pole position for Sunday’s race – changed hands on numerous occasions, with Davison and then Long and Riberas laying claim to it.

GT race results 

PosDriversCarLapTimeGapInterval
1 portugal  Alvaro Parente  McLaren 650S 34 49'54.853    
2 australia  James Davison  Aston Martin Vantage GT3 34 50'04.988 10.135 10.135
3 united_states  Patrick Long  Porsche 911 GT3 R 34 50'05.232 10.379 0.244
4 united_states  Johnny O'Connell  Cadillac ATS-V.R 34 50'06.943 12.090 1.711
5 united_states  Bryan Sellers  McLaren 650S 34 50'07.737 12.884 0.794
6 spain  Alex Riberas  Ferrari 488 GT3 34 50'08.340 13.487 0.603
7 united_states  Michael Cooper  Cadillac ATS-V.R 34 50'08.840 13.987 0.500
8 netherlands  Peter Kox  Acura NSX GT3 34 50'09.342 14.489 0.502
9 united_states  Alec Udell  Porsche 911 GT3 R 34 50'09.947 15.094 0.605
10 united_states  Jon Fogarty  Porsche 911 GT3 R 34 50'10.236 15.383 0.289
11 hong_kong  Adderly Fong  Bentley Continental GT3 34 50'10.623 15.770 0.387
12 united_states  Michael Schein  Porsche 911 GT3 R 34 50'15.873 21.020 5.250
13 united_states  James Sofronas  Porsche 911 GT3 R 34 50'22.449 27.596 6.576
14 italy  Daniel Mancinelli  Ferrari 488 GT3 34 50'26.956 32.103 4.507
15 united_states  Mike Hedlund  McLaren 650S 34 50'38.457 43.604 11.501
16 united_kingdom  Ryan Dalziel  Mercedes AMG GT3 34 50'55.657 1'00.804 17.200
17 united_states  Tim Pappas  Mercedes AMG GT3 33 50'15.723 1 Lap 1 Lap
18 united_states  John Potter  Audi R8 LMS 33 50'19.641 1 Lap 3.918
19 germany  Pierre Kaffer  Audi R8 LMS 33 50'48.647 1 Lap 29.006
20 mexico  Jorge de la Torre  Aston Martin Vantage GT3 32 49'53.564 2 Laps 1 Lap
21 united_states  Preston Calvert  Porsche 911 GT3 Cup 32 50'29.079 2 Laps 35.515
22 united_states  Ryan Eversley  Acura NSX GT3 27 43'06.868 7 Laps 5 Laps
23 china  Yufeng Luo  Bentley Continental GT3 21 34'03.596 13 Laps 6 Laps
  united_states  Marko Radisic  Ferrari Challenge Evo 2 2'58.670 32 Laps 19 Laps
  argentina  Pablo Pérez Companc  Mercedes AMG GT3 1 1'28.137 33 Laps 1 Lap
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About this article

Series SRO America
Event St. Pete
Location St. Petersburg Street Course
Author Charles Bradley