Connect with us


AGHAKHANI: Testing and R&R at VIR

Steven Aghakhani checks in ahead of this weekend’s Super Trofeo North America round at VIR…

Photo: Jamey Price

The Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America racing season is off and running and I am happy to say we head into this weekend’s second event of the year at Virginia International Raceway with a podium finish already in the books.

My amazing co-driver Jacob Eidson and I were given a perfect No. 6 SADA Systems Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo Evo and spot-on pit stops and preparation by the US RaceTronics crew for the first race of the season two Saturdays ago at Circuit of The Americas.

It paid off, and we jumped all the way from ninth overall at the race start to a third-place Pro and overall finish 50 minutes later.

Sunday’s second and final race of the opening weekend didn’t go as well – more on that later – even though we clearly had the same pace and total team drive to get another podium and contend for the win.

As quickly as we charged through the COTA opener, however, we turned around back home in Los Angeles and headed straight for VIR last week.

Photo: Jamey Price

We were in LA for maybe five days at the most but jumped at the chance to get a test day in at VIR this past Memorial Day weekend.

The test went well. The USRT team and my coach Kevin Madsen both put me and the car through a full checklist of work and it was well worth it. It was simply building driver experience, that’s the best way I can put it, and it just helps you and the team become faster, better, smarter and learn every little aspect of the car that we can.

But now Kevin and have just been hanging out together ever since, just kind of decompressing, reviewing video every day, working out, keeping it clean and getting a little rest and relaxation in Danville before this weekend’s race.

It was a little different being away from home on Memorial Day, but I made sure to remember the reason for the holiday.

My father Armik is a U.S. Army combat veteran and instilled the importance of both Memorial Day at Veterans Day on me at an early age. It was a nice opportunity to be able have some time to think and reflect on all the brave military personnel that gave their lives serving our country. We all owe them a great deal of gratitude.

It’s so good to see the Lamborghini Super Trofeo series attracting a huge entry this year. Even our Pro class has attracted a large field which means the competition and the battles will be that much more intense.

Photo: Jamey Price

Getting third place in the very first race was big for us, and certainly for me personally.

We did what we could, really stayed on top of the starts and restarts, and just maximized the car and all of the collective skill that we have.

No matter what way you look at it, the competition is going to be a lot tougher this year than compared to last year.

Jacob started Sunday’s race and picked off a position to jump to third at the race start. Unfortunately, a few corners later he got tagged by another Pro competitor and that eventually led to a shredded right rear Pirelli a few laps later.

We pressed on and, despite two pit stops, managed to rebound for a sixth-place Pro finish.

For sure, it is going to be ultra-competitive this year. Stringing together a bunch of podiums could give you the championship, but that’s not what we are here for. We are not racing to finish third, even second, we are out there to win the whole thing. That’s what we are always shooting for.

Photo: Jamey Price

And that is of course the goal in Super Trofeo Rounds 3 and 4 at VIR this Sunday.

If the car setup is there, Jacob and I know exactly what to do. It will come down to not getting any bad luck or nonsense like we did in the Sunday COTA race.

Regardless of the outcome, a winning aspect of the VIR weekend already is that we will have fans there!

Most of the races we have run the past year, including last August at VIR, have been in front of limited or no crowds, so it will be so nice to see our old IMSA road racing fans at VIR.

Stop by and say hi if you are going to be at VIR this weekend. It will be so nice to say hello to all of you again in person and at the track, where we all belong.

Please stay safe, thank you as always to Sportscar365, and I will check in again in soon. Thanks!

Steven Aghakhani is a 17-year-old championship-winning driver, competing in the 2020 Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America Pro class with US RaceTronics and Vincenzo Sospiri Racing in the Italian GT Championship.

Click to comment

More in Commentary