Racing is a combination of skill, athleticism, knowledge and experience. But sometimes the winning combination takes a little bit of luck to help everything fall into place.
It was by that chance that Corey Lewis found himself navigating a Lamborghini around some of the most iconic race circuits in North America.
Lewis, from Nazareth, Penn., was at his home track of Watkins Glen International last year for a race when he saw Joe Courtney, driver and the Courtney name of Courtney-Musante Racing. Courtney is a member of the Monticello Motor Club, where Lewis is a driver coach.
Courtney was driving a Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo in the series but had another one he wanted to field.
“I thought he was pulling my leg,” Lewis said. “He stopped me on his golf cart and said he had a car and wanted me to drive. Unfortunately we couldn’t put it together for that race, but we stayed in touch. I got the call before Mosport, and that’s how it began.”
Fast-forward a year, and Lewis is running his first full season in the series as the driver of the No. 29 Monster Energy Lamborghini Huracán LP 620-2 Super Trofeo fielded by Change Racing and representing Lamborghini Carolinas.
“I wasn’t really thinking about this year last season,” Lewis said. “I knew the new car was coming, but I thought the second I started daydreaming, something wouldn’t happen.
“I had formed a relationship with the head of motorsport marketing at Monster. They love the Lamborghini brand. At that point I had conversations with a few different teams, but when Robby (Benton) from Change Racing called, we instantly kicked it off. It just all became a perfect fit.”
Through three races this season Lewis has three Pro-Am podiums, including a win at Watkins Glen in Round 3. He has finished fifth overall or better in every start.
That success has become standard practice for Lewis. He and co-driver Aaron Povoledo finished off the podium only once in six races in a partial season in 2014, picking up three wins and a second place in the Pro standings.
Impressive, considering the first time Lewis sat in a Lamborghini was when he was strapping in for that first session at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in July 2014, his Super Trofeo debut.
“It was a little bit like being thrown into the fire,” Lewis said. “It can be a lot of pressure, especially when you are up against the breadth of drivers we have in our series.
“But I’ve never had the budget to go out and test new cars. It’s always trial by fire, in a sense. I only need about five laps to feel comfortable.”
The ease of transitioning to a new car was accelerated by Lewis’ extensive racing background that includes karting championships and podium finishes in multiple series.
Every driver started from a common baseline this season with the introduction of the new Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo, which made its North American debut at the first event at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in May.
“The competition is so tight this season,” Lewis said. “The Lamborghini is honestly probably my favorite to drive. It’s challenging learning the nuances, but it’s rewarding when you figure it all out.
“Everyone is trying to get there first, and you notice it throughout the weekend. It’s competitive and so much fun.”
The competitiveness of the series has been on display from the beginning of the season, with three different winners in three races.
Consistency continues to be key for Lewis as he aims for his main goal of the Pro-Am Championship. He is second in the standings after three races, just one point behind leader Cedric Sbirrazzuoli.
“Times are so neck and neck,” Lewis said. “We knew going into Watkins Glen after two tight races at Laguna that we had to be on our game for qualifying. To get that first win was a weight off my shoulders.
“But I have to put it into perspective that it’s one step to my ultimate goal. I want the Pro-Am Championship, but we have our team goals of a Team and Dealer Championship too.”
The next race for Lewis and his Change Racing team will come on home soil. VIRginia International Raceway will host Rounds 5 and 6, and a makeup of Round 4, on Aug. 21-23.
Lewis will perform double duty that weekend with Change Racing and Strategic Wealth Racing and Goldcrest Motorsports in another IMSA-sanctioned series.
“It’s a night-and-day difference going between the two,” Lewis said. “But it forces you to be on your game. I am just so blessed and humbled to be doing what I’m doing.”