A packed two-day race weekend at Lime Rock Park saw the Stevenson Motorsports Audi R8 LMS finish fourth with drivers Lawson Aschenbach and Andrew Davis in IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar competition on Saturday.
The team, which won the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race earlier in the day, worked all weekend to find the pace of their Audi R8 LMS trying different set up variations to help the stability of the car. That effort yielded results as the team posted the fastest lap of the 2 hour and 40 minute race.
The event ran at a flat out pace from green flag to checkers, with the GTD class battle putting on another very competitive show for the Lime Rock Park fans.
Davis made the best of his qualifying run, placing his Audi in seventh. He started the race and maintained position as he ran consistent lap times equal to the leader despite working with worn tires from qualifying. Davis held seventh before handing the car over to Aschenbach on Lap 54.
It was only a few laps into Aschenbach’s stint that he received a drive through penalty for a pit stop infraction which sent him to the back of the field. After quickly serving his drive through, Aschenbach continued to lay down fast lap times – six-tenths faster than the lead pack.
Following Aschenbach’s first pit stop on Lap 107 he set the fastest GTD lap of 52.779-seconds on Lap 115.
One lap at a time Aschenbach picked off one driver after the next, passing five cars in the second half of his stint as he fought through GTD traffic, ultimately closing out the event fourth.
Andrew Davis: “I really have to commend the Stevenson Motorsports crew. We made so many changes throughout the weekend, they worked nonstop and at such a short event. For my stint, I had used up my tires in qualifying and continued to run the rear tires off during my stint. The last few laps were very difficult, but it was more about maintaining position and holding on. Lawson (Aschenbach) did an amazing job today, I am really proud of him. It was exciting to see how hard he pushed as the car came alive. To end a difficult weekend with a P4 is good points and good momentum for us heading to Road America.”
Lawson Aschenbach: “My first stint I was pretty surprised that we weren’t faster, and I really couldn’t pass many people. Then in my second stint the car came alive and I was able to start attacking people and passing people. All in all, I am really pleased with fourth since we dealt with some adversity and we came back from it. I was happy to give the guys a show and hopefully this is good momentum for our next event.”
Mike Johnson (Team Strategist): “Andrew (Davis) had a pretty tough opening stint with the qualifying tires that were pretty beat up, but he held on and did really well in traffic. Unfortunately, we got a drive through penalty and at a track like this with green flag laps, you think your race is over. The guys worked hard all weekend making changes and it paid off. Lawson (Aschenbach) had a great car and that was probably one of the best drives I have seen him do. He had to go up against some very tough competition at a track where it’s very difficult to pass and he brought it from ninth back to fourth.”
The next event for the Stevenson Motorsports Audi R8 LMS will take place at Road America on August 3-6.
Source. Sunday Group