Entering the event with their sights set on a podium result, Jason Bell and his GMG Racing squad attacked 2.238-mile long WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. Teamed with a pair of fellow Audi R8 GT4 LMS drivers, the trio took on the California 8 Hours Intercontinental GT Challenge this past weekend. Showing speed and advancing forward from their fifth place starting position to lead in class, Bell, James Sofronas and Andrew Davis would be denied of the victory with issues in the latter stages of the eight-hour endurance event.
Qualifying in the fifth position in class, Sofronas would take the GMG Racing prepared machine to the green flag as he quickly moved his way to the point. Taking the class lead before lap thirty, only to relinquish during pit stops, Sofronas handed the controls to both Bell and Davis, who maintained the car’s position. Putting in good stints behind the wheel, the trio looked to have the car to beat in the Golden State.
“Everything went well during the first three quarters of the race. We were running to our plan, staying out of trouble and conserving equipment,” explained Jason Bell. “We wanted to remain on the lead lap and close to the front so we could mount an attack for the win and were doing just that.”
Bell continued, “Leading at hour two, halfway and with two and a half hours to go, our strategy and preparation seemed to be paying off.”
Disaster struck in the final quarter of the race as a left rear wheel issue caused the tire and wheel to be dislodged from the car, taking Bell and his team out of contention for the victory. The GMG Racing crew quickly worked to prepare the #2 Audi, but the race was ultimately over for the team who was eventually classified in the 28th position overall and 11th in class after retiring due to shifting issues.
“The Intercontinental GT Challenge was a great program and I personally learned a lot,” added Bell. “When the race was finished, I instantly started to think about our next on track event which is only two weeks away at the Michelin IMSA SportsCar Encore at the Sebring International Raceway. This will be our second consecutive endurance event and is four hours in length. We were leading at hour four this past weekend so one can only imagine the possibilities.”
A quick turn around and a long trip from California to Florida, Jason Bell will be back on track over the November 9-11 weekend. Taking on the Sebring International Raceway and the Michelin IMSA SportsCar Encore, he and GMG Racing will look for redemption as they continue their preparation towards a full 2019 campaign.
Source. Race Tech Development