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Action Express Goes 1-2 At Mosport

| , RacinToday.com Sunday, July 10 2016
Corvette Daytona Prototype drivers Dane Cameron and Eric Curran combined to score their first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship victory of the season Sunday in Bowmanville, Ontario. (Scott R LePage LAT Photo USA)

Corvette Daytona Prototype drivers Dane Cameron and Eric Curran combined to score their first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship victory of the season Sunday in Bowmanville, Ontario. (Scott R LePage LAT Photo USA)

RacinToday.com

Corvette Daytona Prototype drivers Dane Cameron and Eric Curran combined to score their first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship victory of the season Sunday when they rolled to victory at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

The pair led 66 of the 125 laps in the two-hour and 40-minute race in the No. 31 Corvette DP, including the final 36 circuits.

“Today was one of those races where traffic seemed to go our way and the car drove well,” Cameron said. “Plus, the team was amazing in the pit lane, we made up positions during the stops. It was an important win for us. We did everything we could to win today.”

Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi gave Action Express a 1-2 finish in their No. 5 Corvette DP.

Curran and Cameron trimmed the points lead of Fittipaldi and Barbosa to four points, 220-116, with three races remaining for the Prototype class. The Taylor brothers finished third in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Corvette DP, and are third in the standings with 211 points.

Finishing third was the No. 10 Corvette DP of Wayne Taylor Racing.

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The CORE Autosport driving tandem of Colin Braun and Jon Bennett were class winners in Prototype Challenge. It was their second win of the season.

Renger Van der Zande took second in the No. 8 Starworks entry, followed by Robert Alon and Tom Kimber-Smith in the No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports  car.

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In GT Le Mans, the Ford GTs of Chip Ganassi Racing roll on.

The No. 67 Ford of Richard Westbrook and Ryan Briscoe earned its third consecutive class victory.

“I am surprised a bit,” Westbrook said. “We were struggling a bit on Friday, but we just kept improving the car all weekend. We knew we had a shot for the podium, but we kept dreaming big. We needed something special to win, and that’s what we got today.”

What they got was a successful strategy call. After running most of the first half of the race in third or fourth place, the team took tires for the final time when they pitted under full-course caution an hour and 20 minutes into the two-hour and 40-minute race.

The No. 67 was sixth in class following that stop, but as the cars running ahead of them made their final pit stops for fuel and tires under green-flag conditions, Briscoe gradually worked his way to the class lead. Then, with approximately 50 minutes remaining in the race, the Ganassi team brought Briscoe onto pit road for a seven-second splash of fuel only and sent him back on course without losing the lead.

From there, Briscoe kept a 5-6-second gap to Tommy Milner’s No. 4 Corvette Racing Chevrolet Corvette C7.R for the remaining distance.

“We were in tire and fuel conservation mode as soon as we left the pits, but needed some help,” Briscoe said. “When everyone else pitted we knew we had the opportunity to take a splash of fuel but not change tires. It was a brilliant call by the team. Tommy was a bit quicker, but I was just trying to hang on and bring it home.”

The victory moved Westbrook and Briscoe closer to the GTLM points lead. They now trail Milner and his No. 4 Corvette co-driver Oliver Gavin by five points, 192-187. Gavin and Milner finished second, while their teammates, Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen finished third in the No. 3 Corvette C7.R. Garcia started the race from the pole position and led throughout his 42-minute opening stint, while Magnussen also led for more than 50 minutes.

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Jens Klingmann went from third place to first in the GT Daytona with 30 minutes remaining to give the Turner Motorsports BMW M6 GT3 its first victory.

Klingmann got around both Jeroen Bleekemolen in the No. 33 Dodge Viper GT3-R, who was running second in class, and the leading No. 27 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 driven by Fabio Babini. He then pulled away from the rest of the GTD field over the closing laps to score the victory for himself and co-driver Bret Curtis, who started the race from fourth on the class grid.

“I knew that when (team owner Will) Turner came on the radio and he said this is the fight for the lead and the win, we had a chance for the win,” Klingmann said. “(Bleekemolen) was fighting very hard, it was tough to stay close to him in [going into Turn] 5b. Just then, the traffic came towards us, and I think the Lambo was just too wide, so I tried the only way on the inside. When I got him, I had a little celebration in the car up to Turn 8, but it was short lived.

“I was just managing the pace because we were running out of fuel. We did a short stop to get out in front of the Audis. I’m really proud, this is my first win in North America, and the first win for this new BMW.”

 

| , RacinToday.com Sunday, July 10 2016
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