The Whelen Engineering Cadillac team is coming off of a win at Watkins Glen International Raceway in the last outing for the IMSA WeatherTech DPi cars. Pipo Derani and Felipe Nasr are looking to keep the winning momentum going around the 4-mile, 14-turn undulating road course known for its signature turns including the Carousel, Kink and Canada Corner. The track located just east of Elk Hart Lake is a driver favourite. The duo is third in IMSA Driver DPi points, just 114 shy of the leaders.
“Road America is possibly one of the best racetracks in the world,” Derani said. “It’s superfast – especially driving our Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi V.R. It’s fantastic. We had a podium finish last year. I had one in 2017. The team has had a lot of success there. It’s a track we know well. But, at the same time, it’s a track that gives so much opportunity to any car that’s on track because it has so many different types of corners. It allows different cars to be quick in different places on the track. So, it’s very challenging. It’s a rewarding place to drive every single lap. It’s a thrill.
“We are coming in as the current race winners from Watkins Glen. We’re charging and trying to get closer to the Championship leaders. We are currently P3, but still very much within reach with four rounds to go. The approach will be to attack. We’re not in the position to just think about the Championship. We have to win races and then see where we are at, at the end of the Championship. We are going in with that mentality – expect to win. Hopefully, we can come away with a strong result again and put us even closer to the Championship lead. We’re going for it.”
Kevin Magnussen had the opportunity to race at Road America in an IndyCar in June as well as test there with the Chip Ganassi Racing team in the No. 01 V Performance Academy Cadillac DPi-V.R. The Dane is teamed with Renger van der Zande and the duo will be looking to add another win to go along with their victory in Detroit in June.
“I love the circuit,” Magnussen said. “I think it is one of the best tracks in North America. It’s also the track in this country that I have done the most laps at. Through the test with the team in the Cadillac and the IndyCar race I did earlier in the year I have a lot of experience on the circuit. With my experience, I am looking forward to having a good weekend.
“So far this year we have been able to fight with the other teams at every race. It is a very level playing field in the DPi Class. It really comes down to the details on the weekend. We need to extract everything from the car and the team to have a successful race on Sunday.”
Tristan Vautier and Loic Duval will be looking to get back up on the podium at the Elk Hart Lake, Wisconsin track in the No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R. The duo has a big win at Sebring in March and will be a factor for the top spot come Sunday afternoon.
“I am looking forward to Road America,” Vautier said. “It’s one of my favorite tracks. I really enjoy driving there. The last few years it hasn’t been very favorable to our Cadillac with the BoP (balance of performance) with the long straights. This year, so far, the series has done a good job matching the performance of the DPi cars. I am looking forward to having a good weekend with the JDC-Miller Motorsports team this weekend. We had a difficult couple of races at Watkins Glen even though we almost pulled a podium out of our hat with the mixed conditions. We are looking forward to getting some momentum back. The team is working hard to get us back up to the front. I am impatient. It has been too long of a break since The Glen.”
Coming into the seventh race on the IMSA WeatherTech schedule, the Whelen Engineering Cadillac drivers are third in points with 1,954, -114 to the leaders. The No. 01 V Performance Academy Cadillac DPi-V.R drivers sit fourth with 1,849 and the No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R drivers are sixth with 1,781. Cadillac is leading the manufacturer points by 35.
Cadillac IMSA Road America Line-up and Standings:
3. No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R, Felipe Nasr, Pipo Deran
i4. No. 01 V Performance Academy Cadillac DPi-V.R, Renger van der Zande, Kevin Magnussen
6. No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R, Tristan Vautier, Loic Duval
Source. Kyle Chura/Cadillac Racing