Austin Versteeg finally claimed his first overall Super Trofeo victory Sunday with a masterful driving display at VIRginia International Raceway. The 19-year-old American was the class of the field, grabbing the top spot at the race’s start and never looking back before a dominant win at the checkered flag.
After a similarly impressive performance in Race 1, Versteeg-who finished first on track in his No. 7 DXDT Racing entry, representing Lamborghini Dallas-was relegated to the second-place overall after a time penalty was imposed for a too short pitstop. There were no such issues for the ProAm competitor on Sunday as he crossed the line more than 30 seconds ahead the second-place driver.
“Awesome day to not necessarily bounce back, but unfortunately we didn’t get the overall victory yesterday with the penalty we had,” said Versteeg. “It was an awesome race. I think this was a good weekend for confidence headed into Laguna, and we’ll see what we can do there.”
The winning result also marked the first overall victory for the DXDT Racing team in Super Trofeo-the culmination of a season-long effort from team and driver to reach the top step of the podium.
Trouble in the Pro category helped an unexpected entrant to victory in class as Dion von Moltke grabbed the win in his No. 11 Prestige Performance entry, representing Lamborghini Paramus. Von Moltke-who was called into service shortly before qualifying Saturday morning-stayed out of trouble and ran consistently to reach the top step of the Pro podium, earning valuable points for Prestige Performance in the team championship.
“It’s always great to drive these Lamborghinis,” said von Moltke after his unanticipated win. “They’re a lot of fun-especially around VIR. It’s a high commitment track and there’s a lot of horsepower in these cars, so it was pretty difficult to jump straight into qualifying and figure things out.”
Emmanuel Anassis, who was driving solo for the first time this season in the No. 18 DAC Motorsports entry, representing Lamborghini Palm Beach, was back on top in the Am category. Starting 14th after a difficult qualifying, Anassis methodically worked his way through the field, staying clean and clear as other cars raced hard around him. By the mandatory, midrace pit stops, Anassis was leading his class, but he continued to move up the field to finish fourth in the overall order.
“It’s great to be back on the top again,” said Anassis. “It’s been a bit of a dry spell, but we’re back at it. Luck was on our side and we had a very good race pace. The team again did an amazing job, so I’m happy to be up on the top of the podium.”
Another driver who had to work through the field for a class win was LB Cup winner, J.C. Perez. The No. 71 P1 Motorsports entry, representing Lamborghini Palm Beach, qualified 15th overall and was shuffled back to the rear of the LB Cup on the opening lap. Perez made patient work of his competitors, however, taking advantage of mistakes, and making expert passes when needed, to gain the class lead on Lap 17. He eventually finished eighth overall, the last car on the lead lap, to take his fourth win of the year and extend his championship lead.
Versteeg’s win-his third in a row in the ProAm category-helped to bring him closer to the points leaders in the ProAm category with just four races left in the 2017 season. While he still trails in the overall standings, this victory over series veterans and experts of other sportscar categories is bound to instill even more confidence in the teenage driver, making him an even more potent threat for the rest of the year.
Lamborghini Super Trofeo will be back for its last United States races of the season at Laguna Seca, Sept. 22-24.
As part of a continuing partnership with Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc. (Torque.TV), Lamborghini Super Trofeo races will be live-streamed on the following platforms: squadracorse.lamborghini.com, motortrendondemand.com and Internationally on imsa.tv and radiolemans.com. Tape-delayed coverage of each event will air on CBS Sports Network in primetime. The coverage will feature live commentary on both the broadcast and live streams.
The North American series continues to attract increasing numbers of competitors and interest.
The Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo adopts the V10 direct injection engine mounted on the road car, managed by a MoTeC control unit that delivers a maximum output of 620 horsepower. The frame is a hybrid carbon/aluminum construction with modified geometries to house an improved radiator up front and better accommodate the racing gearbox at the rear, which also provides better aerodynamics.
AUSTIN VERSTEEG (No. 7 DXDT Racing, winner, first ProAm):
“Awesome day to not necessarily bounce back, but unfortunately we didn’t get the overall victory yesterday with the penalty we had. It was an awesome race. Just out front pretty much the whole time, and was just trying to clock off consistent lap times to stretch the gap so we didn’t get behind in the pit stops. We had an awesome start, held second. Was able to push Lally to the outside, so I was able to hold second and then Trent had a little bobble out of [Turn] Three and we had a run and I had to go for it. I knew I had to make it happen there so I could kind of pace the race. From there, just putting down lap times trying to stretch the gap. We were able to do that and the pit stops were awesome.
“I Can’t thank everyone at DXDT enough. My driver coach, Jonathon Jorge, our engineer, Eric Peterson, all the guys who work on the cars. They’re amazing. My sponsors, MuscleEgg, Size Slim, dEp PATCH, and everyone who’s helped me up to this point. I think this was a good weekend for confidence headed into Laguna, and we’ll see what we can do there.
“I just think we’re learning as the season goes on. This is still my first season in sportscars ever, and every time I’m out there, I’m learning no matter what the situation is. I think the more experience we get, the better we’re going to be able to be.”
DION VON MOLTKE (No. 11 Prestige Performance, winner, first Pro):
“I didn’t even expect to be racing this weekend, to be quite honest with you. First off, congratulations to Austin. He did a fantastic job this weekend. I felt bad also for the 16 car [Antinucci and Lally]. I was trying to catch him [Antinucci] to have a good fight-you never want to see the competition go off with a problem.
“Big thank you to Prestige Performance for allowing me to come join them this weekend and get some points for the team championship which was the main focus. It’s always great to drive these Lamborghinis. They’re a lot of fun-especially around VIR. It’s a high commitment track and there’s a lot of horsepower in these cars, so it was pretty difficult to jump straight into qualifying and figure these things out, but from qualifying to the race, we made some changes, and from Race 1 to Race 2 we made some more great changes to the car. It was really solid today. Shame to see what happened to the 1 car [Hindman and Agostini] at the start. They’re kind of our main focus for the championship. I think they’re still leading. Hopefully they have a nice little cushion. We’re hoping we can wrap up the team and drivers’ championship in Laguna.”
EMMANUEL ANASSIS (No. 18 DAC Motorsport, winner, first Am):
“It was amazing. It’s great to be back on the top again. It’s been a bit of a dry spell, but we’re back at it. The team did an incredible job. The car was super damaged at the start of the race, so I could barely hang on to it. Luck was on our side and we had a very good race pace. The team again did an amazing job, so I’m happy to be up on the top of the podium.”
J.C. PEREZ (No. 71 P1 Motorsports, winner, first LB Cup):
“We had a really bad qualifying. I had to do what I could. In Race 1, I had an unfortunate penalty-it was my fault. Race 2, I just knew I had the pace. I did the passes I had to do. I stayed away from trouble. The competition was pretty good. I just did what I had to do. I had a lot more to give, but I just wanted to baby-sit the trophy. My car did amazing, my team did amazing.”
Source. LST Marketing