- Bonanomi Replaces Kimber-Smith at PR1/Mathiasen for COTA
- Cadillac Yet to Declare Driver Pairings for VIR
- Ford, Ferrari Evaluating Evo Kits for 2018
- Prestige/WTR Confirm Lamborghini ST Driver Lineups
- Double Stint: Monza Recap, Kenton Koch Interview (4.25.17)
- New Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 Breaks Cover; Begins Testing Program
- Jacques, Pierre Nicolet Headline Eurasia 24H Le Mans Lineup
- Ginetta Open to Future Evolutions of LMP1 Car
- Johansson Returns to Driving in Scuderia Corsa Ferrari for SprintX
- Morad Joins Dalziel in CRP Mercedes for SprintX
NEGRI: Long Beach Debrief
- Updated: April 11, 2017
After the two longest races of our IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season at Daytona and Sebring, we headed to the shortest one at Long Beach for Round 3.
The three are totally different tracks and Long Beach is one of my favorite street courses.
We went right into practice early Friday morning and right from the beginning of the first session, I could tell that all the hard work our Michael Shank Racing team had been putting in had paid off.
Our Acura NSX GT3 felt really good and inspired a lot of confidence. And to be able to attack the corners on a street course you have to have that confidence.
We made a change for Friday afternoon’s second practice session that didn’t work well and because qualifying was held just 10 minutes after that session was over, we did not have enough time to go back on the change.
I was disappointed that I qualified 12th, but I was optimistic – knowing that we had a lot more pace in the car for the race.
The start of the race was mega strange. I was looking forward to try and gain some positions on the start but everyone was so spread out at the drop of the green flag that I never got a chance to challenge going into Turn 1.
With Long Beach being a 100-minute race, track position was key and with that in mind, I was able to move up to ninth by the first full course caution.
We were anticipating some yellow flags during the race, but not as many as we ended up having. We were committed to a strategy and got caught out a few times by the wrong timing of the yellow flags.
Nevertheless, the team did a great job on the pit stops and Jeff (Segal) was able to climb to P6, which would have been an amazing result for us and great points for the championship.
Unfortunately, it only lasted until the final corner on the last lap when our car got hit going in into the hairpin.
I just could not believe it!!!!!! We were so close. So much effort put in and it was all gone.
I was extremely disappointed but at the same time proud and happy with the progress that we had made with our Acura NSX GT3.
There is no looking back, now my focus is COTA.