Johnny O’Connell won a GT drag-race down Shoreline Drive with pole-sitter Alvaro Parente on a lap 15 restart to take a lead he wouldn’t lose in his No. 3 Cadillac ATS V.R. GT3 Sunday in the 50-minute Pirelli World Challenge race on the Long Beach street circuit.
O’Connell stared on the outside front row next to Parente’s No. 9 K-PAX Racing McLaren 650S GT3 but didn’t make the move for the lead until the second of the race’s two restarts.
He opened up a comfortable margin in the race’s closing laps and crossed the finish line 1.138 seconds ahead of Parente.
O’Connell, who first won here in 2014, scored his second Long Beach PWC victory.
Patrick Long, who ran as high as second early in the race after a great start from fourth, finished third in the No. 31 EFFORT Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R.
James Davison finished fourth in the No. 33 Always Evolving Nissan GT-R GT3 and Kyle Marcelli completed the top five in the No. 2 CRP Racing Audi R8 LMS ultra.
Five different manufacturers – Cadillac, McLaren, Porsche, Nissan and Audi were represented in the GT top-five.
In the GTA class, Martin Fuentes maintained his perfect 2016 win record with his fifth victory of the season in the No. 07 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari F458 Italia GT3.
Fuentes previously swept the season-opening doubleheaders at Circuit of The Americas and St. Petersburg.
Tim Pappas finished second in GTA in the No. 54 Black Swan Racing Dodge Viper GT3-R and Brent Holden was third in the No. 44 GMG Racing Audi R8 LMS GT3.
Jorge De La Torre was fourth GTA in the No. 4 De La Torre Racing Motor Aston Martin Vantage V6 GT3.
Frankie Montecalvo, who led briefly at the race start, completed the GTA top-five in the No. 66 DIME Racing Mercedes AMG SLS GT3 despite finishing in the pits after a contact incident in the closing minutes.
Like GT, the top-five GTA finishers represented five different manufacturers: Ferrari, Dodge, Audi, Aston Martin and Mercedes-Benz.
Pirelli World Challenge returns to action next weekend at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala.