After winning the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race on Saturday, the team returned on Sunday to post an impressive run out front with the No. 57 Stevenson Audi R8 LMS to take a convincing IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship victory with Andrew Davis and Lawson Aschenbach.
The victory was the first for the team with the Audi R8 LMS after suffering through multiple race outings with mechanical issues setting them back.
Heading into the Mobil 1 Sports Car Grand Prix, the team was looking for redemption. Unloading with a quick car, the No. 57 Stevenson Motorsports Audi R8 impressed with strong pace in practice as Davis secured a front row starting spot in Saturday’s qualifying for the two hour and 40-minute event.
A fast two hour opening segment saw Davis take the lead on Lap 6 before turning the car over to Aschenbach on a Lap 39 pit stop. Moving to the lead on Lap 45, Aschenbach grew his advantage to over 17-seconds ahead of second place.
With changing weather and a pair of caution periods, Aschenbach’s lead was erased. But the young American managed to hold on to the point, with well-timed tire strategy calls from the pit box allowing him to score the victory through the changing conditions which saw both rain and dry running.
The victory marks the return to the GT class victory lane for Stevenson Motorsports, and the first since joining IMSA WeatherTech series competition in 2016. It is the first weekend event sweep for Stevenson Motorsports since winning both races at Road Atlanta in 2013.
“What really helped us was having great pit stops during long green flag runs,” said Aschenbach. “This Audi R8 LMS was just on rails all weekend thanks to Steve Newey’s engineering and Mike Johnson’s strategy. It’s a weekend sweep for Stevenson Motorsports. I wish Johnny and Susan Stevenson could be here but we are so proud of this win and they deserve it more than anybody else.”
Davis admits the end was a nail biter but had all the faith in the world that his teammate Aschenbach could pull off the win.
“I had faith in Lawson (Aschenbach) and I knew that we had this win,” said Davis. “We lost a team member last week, Dexter Johnson, who was a very integral part of our team so this race is for Dexter. I am so happy for John and Susan Stevenson and we wish they were here to celebrate with us. Just an amazing job by the whole team for great pit stops and great strategy calls. This is a big win for us and hopefully there is more to come.”
This win comes after a remarkable Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge win on Saturday as the team scored first-time victories with Audi and for Chevrolet this weekend.
“It feels so good to be back in victory lane especially in this class,” said Mike Johnson. “This is our first win in WeatherTech and in the GTD class and our first one with Audi after two long years of trying. Canada has been so great to us. What a boost for this team, two wins on the same weekend.”
The next round of IMSA WeatherTech competition will take place at Lime Rock Park on July 21st – 22nd.
Source. Sunday Group