WeatherTech Racing drivers Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill.) and Toni Vilander (Kankaanpää, Finland) are heading to Virginia International Raceway (VIR) for the IMSA WeatherTech Championship Michelin GT Challenge, August 21-23.
The Scuderia Corsa-run team will be looking to improve a couple steps on the podium from last year’s third place run at the 3.27-mile, 17-turn rolling terrain road course located just over the border of North Carolina. MacNeil had success at VIR late in the 2019 season logging a victory in the SCCA Runoffs in October.
The duo come into the weekend sixth in GTD points. The GTLM and GTD only cars will run on Saturday afternoon as several competitors and team owners have to be in Indianapolis on Sunday for the running of the Indy 500.
“I really like VIR,” MacNeil said. “When you really have your car hooked up it is a great place to race. Toni and I were third there last year, but with the new Evo package on our WeatherTech Racing Ferrari 488 we hope we will be a little bit better this weekend. We will have limited time to get our car set-up, but that is the way we have to do things this year. It is too bad that we won’t have fans at the race. The vibe is totally different without our open paddock, autograph session and grid walk.
“I was fortunate to win my class in the Runoffs there last year. It was a busy weekend as we had run Petit Le Mans the night before. I hope we can have the same outcome this Saturday.”
“Looking forward to the VIR GT-only weekend,” Vilander said. “It is a little easier when there are fewer cars on track and you are not constantly looking in your mirrors for a prototype to come running up on you. It is one of my favorite tracks in the U.S. because of the high-speed character of the layout. I especially like the fast esses and into Oak Tree turn. I am expecting a lot of grip on the track from the Michelin tires, different from Road America. Cooper has been doing an excellent job this year in the WeatherTech Ferrari and he won there last October.
“We struggled at Road America with top speed. There has been one brand that is really running away. The Scuderia Corsa engineers have really been on top of the car and the strategy. We run 100 percent every session and we look forward to some good racing this weekend.”
Source. Kyle Chura/WeatherTech Racing