Performance Tech Motorsports faced highs and lows at Watkins Glen International.
Weeks of hard work and dedication reached its peak for Performance Tech Motorsports at the WeatherTech 240. The team celebrated its second Motul Pole award of the year, but its celebrations were cut short due to on-track tribulations.
Runs like these make Team Principal Brent O’Neill proud of his teams’ willingness to never give up.
“This one hurt,” O’Neill said. “Mateo did a mega job putting us on pole and kept it clean during his stint. The red flag messed us up a bit but really it was the punt in Rasmus’s stint that did us in. These guys keep pushing and overcoming everything that gets thrown their way. We have lots to learn here, it’s on to the next one.”
Young gun Mateo Llarena impressed onlookers this weekend earning the Motul Pole Award in his first IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship qualifying. He demonstrated guts and grit in the No. 38 as he lead the field from pole position in his debut as the starting driver. With threatening storm clouds rolling in Llarena buckled down and focused on his own race, blocking out the overzealous competitors surrounding him.
A discrepancy in track position at the start caused Llarena to serve a drive through penalty but the 17-year-old continued to remain calm and collected. With storm cells threatening to break the perimeter of the track he handed the car off to co-drive Rasmus Lindh for the Swedish Superstar’s second race of the day.
Lindh settled in with one hour and 45 minutes remaining, rain beginning to fall, and the first full course caution being displayed. Amidst the madness Lindh saw an opportunity to make up for lost time, strategizing what his next move would be. Unfortunately, his tactful efforts were thwarted as a red flag was thrown for inclement conditions.
With 50 minutes remaining cars rolled back on to the track. Lindh took the green flag in second place with first place in his reach. With 25 minutes remaining a competitor bumped and spun the No. 38 cutting its left rear tire and ruining its race. Ultimately Lindh brought the No. 38 home in fifth place.
Next up for the No. 38 Centinel Spine Ligier JSP320 is Road America, August 5-8. The team has a history of success at the circuit and looks to build on it throughout the event.
Mateo Llarena, Driver of the No. 38 Ligier JSP320
“The high point of this weekend was definitely getting my first pole position,” Llarena said. “I think it was great for the team and a very positive moment for all of us. I also am happy I got to learn this track better. In my stint I think overall it was good. The penalty was a miscommunication, but I was able to gain a lot of time back. Rasmus did good but we just didn’t have it today.”
Rasmus Lindh, Driver of the No. 38 Ligier JSP320
“Starting from pole you always hope for a better result than this,” Lindh said. “The car was fast but unfortunately we got bumped at the end which ruined our chances. I’m hoping that we can work past this and get a win next time.”
Source. Performance Tech Motorsports