I don’t think there is a single driver in the IMSA paddock that didn’t miss our annual trip to Watkins Glen in 2020.
The speed and commitment to get everything out of a DPi car around there is unlike anywhere else on our calendar, a ton of fun and a massive neck workout to say the least.
While it’s also sad we haven’t been able to go north of the border and visit Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in the last two years, I don’t think anyone was upset at having to race back to back at Watkins this year.
It was even better to be back at the Glen with fans!
The Six-hour went well for us but it was pretty bittersweet to come up short and finish P2 after dominating the day. But the team did a perfect job all weekend and we had a rocket ship to drive, it just didn’t work out at the end with the timing of the last yellow.
Not much to say about our race the following weekend, the “240”. Oli [Pla] did a good job to qualify P2 but unfortunately he had some contact in the first corner in one of them racing deals and the car just wasn’t the same after that damage.
It’s tough to win races in IMSA, so to have two good chances and leave empty handed was hard to take, but I know we are close to breaking through.
It was pretty unusual to race back to back at the same track and be on the road for ten days or so, but it did allow me to sneak a few nice rides in on the off days.
The only drama was a few hours of stress waiting to be reunited with my bike after it didn’t make it onto my flight, but it arrived safe and sound. Lots of great riding in the area, even though almost every ride had some surprise stretch of gravel which I’m still not sold on.
The highlight was an awesome 75-mile loop around Seneca Lake on Tuesday. We had a pretty good crew to share the work with Ricky Taylor, Rodney Sandstorm, Spencer Pigot, Lee Niffenegger from HPD and Jeff Mishtawy from IMSA.
Only a few punctures at the beginning and even though it was all racers we kept the pace mostly under control!
We have a little break before the next race, but right back to work this week to kick off the second year of the HPD GT3 Academy at Mid-Ohio.
I really enjoyed it last year and it was cool to see it all the way through and coach last year’s graduates in some of their first GT3 races this year.
There is nothing like it in North America and it really is a great way to gain experience and inside knowledge on what it takes to transition into and be successful in sports car racing.
It’s been so great to be able to interact with all the fans again, sign some autographs and feel like things are more normal. Hope to keep seeing more and more the rest of the season!