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CONWAY: Watkins Glen Debrief

Prestige’s Kevin Conway checks into Sportscar365 following Watkins Glen…

Photo: Jamey Price/Lamborghini

Photo: Jamey Price/Lamborghini

Going into Rounds 3 and 4 of the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo North America championship at Watkins Glen, our team knew the importance of the next two rounds of racing, especially with it being the home race for Prestige Performance, the Prestige Family of Dealerships and Lamborghini Paramus.  

The weekend started out with two free practice sessions. Our car showed speed as my co-driver, Enrique Bernoldi, and I continue to learn and adapt to the new Lamborghini Huracán LP 620-2 platform. 

During qualifying, the lap times showed just how quick the cars really are. The previous track record, set with the Gallardo LP 570-4, for the Super Trofeo series was shattered by nearly six seconds. 

During our fast lap in the qualifying session we encountered traffic and had to settle for P4, but knew our Prestige Performance Huracán had plenty of speed to be at the top of the chart with a clean lap.   

One of things that is always changing during the early summer months in upstate New York is the weather.  Rain was predicted each day but had held off through our first race on Friday. With no rain Round 3 started under sunny skies. 

I had a good start and settled into P4 on the opening lap allowing the tires to come up to pressure and temperature. Two early caution periods burned through much of the clock during the short 50-minute sprint race. 

As soon as we went back to racing after the second caution period, we were in our pit-stop window and decided to pit on the next lap to hand the car off to Enrique for his stint. 

Our Prestige Performance team executed a flawless pit stop, quickly putting four new Pirelli P-Zero slicks on and changing drivers. 

When the pit cycle neared the end, we found ourselves in third position, but the leader had to yet to make his mandatory pit stop. 

An untimely full course yellow allowed the leader to pit under yellow flag conditions and retain his track position, leaving us in the third position. 

When the race resumed, it was down to a four-lap shoot-out among the leaders. Enrique drove a brilliant stint as the second, third and fourth-place cars were putting down the fastest laps of the race chasing down the leader. 

With all four cars within hundredths of a second, passing was nearly impossible.  After checkered flag flew, we found ourselves back on the podium in P3.  

On Saturday, we awoke to a rainy, foggy morning. By the late afternoon, the heavy rains persisted and IMSA had to cancel TUSC qualifying and ultimately our race as standing water in the corners and water running across the track made conditions unsafe. I applaud IMSA and Lamborghini on their decision, as safety is their number one priority.  

While we did not get the finish we know we are capable of, it was good to be fighting at the top and be in a position to win. 

The wins will come, we just have to keep pushing and working harder than ever.  We have made significant gains with the new Huracán and the team is continuing to jell.  

The championship is proving to be one of the most competitive in the world, experiencing tremendous growth, new TV packages, online media coverage and an amazing new race car.  

For me personally, the next round at VIR is one of my favorite tracks and a home race. August cannot get here soon enough!  

Make sure you watch all of the action from Watkins Glen on CBS Sports Network, July 8 at 10 p.m. ET.

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