Alegra Motorsports has broken through to claim its first Pirelli World Challenge victory in Monday’s GT SprintX opening race at Lime Rock Park.
A strategic call to keep second-placed Spencer Pumpelly on track when leader Toni Vilander pitted paid dividends, when his co-driver Michael Christensen rejoined in the overall lead halfway through the 60-minute race.
The Porsche factory driver extended his margin to more than five seconds prior to the race’s one-and-only full-course caution for the GT Cup class No. 27 Dream Racing Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo of Ryan Hardwick, who ran off course.
It set up a six-minute shootout to the finish.
Christensen took the No. 24 Porsche 911 GT3 R to a 2.759-second win over the No. 61 R. Ferri Motorsport Ferrari 488 GT3 of Miguel Molina in second.
Vilander inherited the lead after contact between the two front-row starting Mercedes-AMG GT3s sent the No. 2 car of Daniel Morad off-course at the start and Mike Skeen handed a drive-through penalty for incident responsibility.
Raffaele Marciello charged to a 6th place overall finish in the CRP entry, setting the race’s fastest lap, while a slow pit stop put the No. 80 Lone Star Racing Mercedes one lap down and en route to 9th overall.
The No. 96 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche of Wolf Henzler and Scott Hargrove completed the overall podium in third, ahead of the No. 9 K-PAX Racing Bentley Continental GT3 of Andy Soucek and Alvaro Parente.
Parente was forced to start at the rear of the grid due to a technical infraction in qualifying but had quickly charged up to the top-five in his Bentley.
Dalziel, Chase Take Pro-Am Class Honors
TruSpeed Autosport picked up Pro-Am class honors, with Ryan Dalziel controlling the class in the No. 19 Audi R8 LMS GT3 he shared with Parker Chase, who had an equally impressive stint.
Dalziel finished fifth overall, two seconds clear of Jeff Segal in the No. 31 TR3 Racing Ferrari in the nearest Pro-Am class entry.
It marked TruSpeed and Chase’s second class win in the last three races after taking top GTA honors in the first Sprint round at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park last weekend.
Race 2 at Lime Rock is set to get underway 4:05 p.m. EDT.
RESULTS: Race 1