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GT World Challenge America

COTA Friday Notebook

John Dagys’ Friday PWC notebook from Circuit of The Americas…

Photo: Brian Cleary/

Photo: Brian Cleary/

***The No. 28 LG Motorsports Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3 has been withdrawn after various gremlins with the car, according to team owner/driver Lou Gigliotti. The former series champion told Sportscar365 that he’ll focus on his GTS class Vantage GT4 this weekend. The GT3 car could return to action later this year with a customer.

***Reiter Engineering is fielding only two Blancpain Racing Lamborghinis this weekend, as its third car, originally published as a new Gallardo R-EX for Marcelo Hahn, was mistakenly on the entry list, per the team. The German squad is prepping a third Gallardo FL2 for a potential customer for later this year.

***The Lamborghini Gallardo R-EX, which made its worldwide debut in last month’s FARA USA race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, is expected to appear in PWC later this spring. Nick Catsburg is the only confirmed full-season driver thus far.

***The two withdrawals will result in an expected 38-car starting grid in GT/GTA tomorrow, alongside ten GT Cup presented by MOMO class cars.

***The bumper grid has resulted in some concerns over the standing starts, voiced during this morning’s drivers meeting. PWC officials will finalize the grid spacing between the cars tonight, with a two-row gap being established between the GT/GTA and GT Cup classes.

***The Audi R8 LMS ultra and Dodge Viper GT3-R have been two GT3 cars that’s undergone off-season Balance of Performance adjustments by PWC. The Audi has received a 3.3 mm larger air restrictor but with a 243-pound minimum weight increase. The Viper has a 1 mm larger restrictor and a weight addition of 253 pounds.

***The new Cadillac ATS-V.R, which makes its worldwide debut, has been homologated with two 40 mm air restrictors and a minimum weight of 3053 pounds. The car is awaiting final homologation from the FIA.

***JRM Group is supporting the AE Nissan GT Academy effort this season, with the supply of factory engineers and parts supply for the pair of JRM-built Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 cars of James Davison and Bryan Heitkotter. It marks the car’s debut in North America.

***While there are ten GT Cup class entries here this weekend, there is the potential to see as many as 16 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars later this season, judging by recent interest from Porsche Motorsport North America. The class will be capped to 10 entries for St. Pete and Long Beach due to space restrictions.

***The inspiration of DragonSpeed’s “Evel Knievel” livery on its No. 10 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 is in honor of driver Henrik Hedman gaining his U.S. citizenship this year. The livery on the Florida-based Swede’s car in the Blancpain Endurance Series will also carry a similar livery.

***Frankie Montecalvo’s impressive pace-setting time in opening practice was attributed to a mock qualifying run for the DragonSpeed Mercedes. Montecalvo said he and co-drivers Eric Lux and Henrik Hedman have been evaluating different setups on their gull-winged cars, one of the many benefits of being a three-car GT team.

***EFFORT Racing is hosting members from the Paralyzed Veterans of America this weekend. PVA provides injured service men and women with the tools necessary to ensure a prosperous future, while also dedicated to medical research and fighting for people with disabilities.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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