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GT World Challenge America

Barber Weekend Notebook

Tony DiZinno’s weekend notebook from the PWC weekend at Barber…

Photo: Brian Cleary/

Photo: Brian Cleary/

***Pirelli World Challenge issued a further update on why the decision from Race Control was made to end Saturday’s Round 6 under green. A call was made prior to the end of the scheduled 50-minute time frame under green with 50 seconds left in that 50-minute frame, and a safety truck was delayed exiting the circuit. The series said the final lap of the race, Lap 29 run under green, would not be in question.

***Nick Catsburg is in the updated Lamborghini Gallardo Extenso R-EX this weekend and for his remaining races this season. Catsburg, however, will miss the next race weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park as he’ll be racing in the 24 Hours of the Nurburgring that weekend. Of today’s race, Catsburg told Sportscar365, “James (Davison) didn’t make a mistake. It wasn’t an easy pass. We had a clean race, and almost settled for P2.”

***The possibility existed that Catsburg would be issued double points for whatever his Round 6 score was, however, according to series officials, that will not occur. According to the series, the Blancpain Racing team was offered an entry for Long Beach but declined it, thus invalidating the possibility of Catsburg being issued double points for Round 6.

***Overnight rain nearly ruined several teams’ weekends before it even got started. Storms in Birmingham broke the tent setup for ANSA Motorsports, with the team’s awning coming loose and barely avoiding hitting the Blancpain Racing transporter. No individuals or cars were hurt; ANSA was working Saturday to repair the awning for the No. 13 GT Cup entry driven by Lorenzo Trefethen. ANSA also has a new partner this weekend, in B.R.M. Chronographs.

***Eric Lux missed the first race of the weekend in the No. 08 DragonSpeed Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 with a traction control issue and front end damage following Saturday morning’s qualifying. The team was working to ensure Lux returns for Sunday.

***Andy Pilgrim in the No. 8 Cadillac Racing Cadillac ATS-V.R retired late in the race with gearbox issues, and Kevin Estre in the No. 9 K-PAX Racing with Flying Lizard Motorsports McLaren 650S GT3 had mechanical issues that forced him stopping on track (pictured above).

***Bentley Team Dyson Racing driver Butch Leitzinger will miss this weekend’s pair of races, with Chris Dyson, team driver, vice president and sporting director telling Sportscar365 they are working hard on a solution (would be a new Bentley Continental GT3 acquired from technical partner M-Sport) and are working hard to make Mosport.

***Leitzinger didn’t place blame on any one team, driver or series following the Long Beach race. “There’s nothing institutional holding us back. Everyone needs a reset. I think it’s difficult when you are younger and you don’t have much in the way of perspective, where the definition of a tragedy is having understeer on your fastest lap. I think it falls to everyone. I can’t imagine many of these teams are happy… I know mine’s not.”

***Mike Hedlund isn’t at Barber this weekend, but his car is. The Californian listed his Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 for sale at the track, noting a new carbon clutch and just installed 2015-spec endurance brakes already on board.

***After a spin on Lap 6 dropped him from 13th to 25th, Duncan Ende in the No. 64 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 rebounded to a season-best 11th place finish.

***As noted earlier, EFFORT Racing driver Michael Lewis has now been promoted to the GT class as a result of scoring two overall top-five finishes in the opening four races.

Tony DiZinno (@tonydizinno) is Sportscar365's North American Editor, focusing on coverage of the IMSA-sanctioned championships as well as Pirelli World Challenge. DiZinno also contributes to and other motorsports outlets. Contact Tony


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