“The Glen”: The 3.4-mile road course which has a historic background has played host to NASCAR, Formula 1, IndyCar, and IMSA through the decades, as well as some 35 editions of the six-hour event. The newly repaved course (2015) will give way to sweeping corners and fast esses, upping the competition level for the third IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship endurance event of 2017.
Running on Momentum: Round 5 of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Detroit proved to be the best weekend yet for Stevenson Motorsports after Lawson Aschenbach qualified the No. 57 Audi R8 LMS on pole. Unfortunately, the team’s race ended early when a broken axle brought the sole Audi entry into the pits.
Two-Time Winners: The Glen has been a staple event on the Stevenson Motorsports schedule for the past 14 years with 16 total race entries. The team has a winning history at Watkins Glen International. Co-drivers Robin Liddell and John Edwards won back-to-back 6 Hour events in the GT class of the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series in 2012 and 2013.
The First: Watkins Glen was the first track that Stevenson Motorsports ever raced on in 2003 with team owner, Johnny Stevenson and Chip Vance behind the wheel of a Porsche resulting in an impressive second place finish.
Lawson Aschenbach History: Aschenbach has 10+ years of experience racing at the Glen. One of Aschenbach’s highlights came when he won in 2010 in the ST class of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge. Aschenbach’s strong history at the circuit also includes three top-five finishes.
Andrew Davis History: Davis has a plethora of experience racing at Watkins Glen International including one Sahlen’s Six Hour victory racing (Brumos Racing in 2011) along with two additional Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge wins for Stevenson Motorsports in 2014 & 2015.
Lawson Aschenbach: “Watkins Glen is extremely fast and smooth, which should play into the strengths of our Audi R8 LMS. We will need to be on our game every second of this race. The most important factors are racing clean and having fast pit stops. Track position will play a major role, especially towards the end of the race. Detroit was our best weekend as a team this season. Everyone was on point throughout the event and we were primed for our first podium finish until the mechanical failure. We can take a lot of positives from that race and just bring that all-around teamwork to the Glen to hopefully come out on top.”
Andrew Davis: “I always look forward to Watkins Glen. It’s a true racing community that embraces the history of our sport, and the Six Hours of the Glen is one of the crown jewels of motorsports in the United States. Winning the event in 2011 remains one of my career highlights, so I have fond memories every time I go back. Our Stevenson Motorsports Audi R8 LMS proved to be very quick last year, and the same goes for our testing at the track earlier last month. I feel like the fast and flowing nature of the circuit really suits the Audi’s strong points, so we are looking to challenge for the top of the podium at this year’s event. The GTD category is filled with some of the best teams and drivers in the sport, so we will need to focus on both speed and reliability to outlast the strong competition.”
IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge
Race: Continental Tire 120 at the Glen
Race Length: 2 hours
Car: No. 57 Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R
Drivers: Matt Bell and Robin Liddell
Strong COTA Debut: Stevenson Motorsports made its return to IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge competition in the series’ second round of racing at Circuit of the Americas. The team exceeded all expectations, leading several laps and crossing the finish line with a top five result.
Strong Past at the Glen: The previous two years that Stevenson Motorsports has attended The Glen in CTSC competition the team came away with victories (2014 & 2015). In total, the team has partaken in six CTSC events at the iconic track with seven top-five results.
Matt Bell at the Glen: Bell has a long running streak of competition at the Glen, having competed in events at the track for the past nine years. Bell’s highlights include five top-five finishes, two of which were second place results in the GS class. He finished fourth in 2015 and scored the fastest GS lap of the race.
Robin Liddell at the Glen: Robin Liddell has spent the majority of his time at the Glen with Stevenson Motorsports, racing eight out of twelve races with the North Carolina-based team. Liddell has collected five class wins – two in the Sahlens’ 6 Hour (2012 & 2013) and two in Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge while driving the Camaro Z/28.R with Stevenson (2014 & 2015).
Chevy Camaro GT4.R Specs:
Chassis: Rear-wheel drive, unitized body with 2-way adjustable struts & dampers and front & rear anti-roll bars
Engine: 6.2L V8 naturally aspirated direct injection
Transmission: Six-speed sequential with paddle shifters
Matt Bell: “I think this car will be easy to get used to at the Glen. We’ve always thought the previous GS Camaros were well-suited to the track, and the new GT4.R is not only an improvement, but a step closer to a GT3 car, which Robin (Liddell) and I have our most recent experience in. We will certainly have an easier time at Watkins Glen than we did at COTA. Those long straights in Austin didn’t pay in our favor since we’re so down on top speed. We proved we have excellent brakes and do well in high-speed corners, so the Glen should be a bit better for the car. We’ve learned a lot about the car and how it reacts to changes. I expect the team will hit the ground running with our new knowledge and be competitive right away.”
Source. Sunday Group