Gregory Liefooghe held off a hard-charging Casey Dennis to give Stephen Cameron Racing victory in Friday’s opening Pirelli GT4 America West race of the day at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.
Liefooghe took his No. 19 BMW M4 GT4 to a narrow 0.315-second win over Dennis’ USRD Ginetta G55 GT4 following a late-race restart that shook up the order in the 60-minute race.
The No. 91 Rearden Racing Audi R8 LMS GT4 of Jeff Burton appeared set for a commanding win until the No. 452 RHC Jorgensen/Strom BMW GT4 of Daren Jorgensen stopped on track with 15 minutes to go.
Burton’s 20-plus second lead, courtesy of a storming stint from co-driver Vesko Kozarov, was erased and saw Burton drop to third after taking his Audi too deep into the Corkscrew shortly after the restart.
It opened the door for Liefooghe to assume the lead with seven minutes to go and take the win for he and co-driver Sean Quinlan.
Burton held on for third overall and the GT4 Am class victory for he and Kozarov, finishing ahead of the No. 38 ST Racing BMW GT4 of Jason Wolfe, who made a late-race charge to come home fourth.
The sister ST Racing BMW GT4 of Harry Gottsacker and Jon Miller completed the top-five after being forced to serve a drive-through penalty for not meeting the 73-second minimum pit stop delta.
Gottsacker was running second at the time prior to serving the penalty.
Brett Strom led the early stages of the race in his RHC Jorgensen/Strom BMW GT4 from pole-sitter Derek DeBoer, who faded to fourth in the opening laps.
Kozarov, who started from fifth on the grid, took over the lead on Lap 18 in a daring outside move around Strom through traffic prior to the race’s one-and-only full-course caution.
Race 2 gets underway at 2:30 p.m. PST this afternoon.
RESULTS: Race 1