3GT Racing ready for Petit Le Mans, last race of season
EAST LANSING, MI (October 5, 2017) – The last of four endurance races in the 2017 Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup, the Motul Petit Le Mans, will be Saturday, Oct. 7 at Road Atlanta and marks the final race in the 2017 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season.
For 3GT Racing it is a final opportunity for a win or podium during the inaugural year of racing the No. 14 and No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3.
The 10-hour race also means additional drivers will join the two teams racing the Lexus RC F GT3 cars. Ian James will partner with the Sage Karam and Robert Alon team in the No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3. And Austin Cindric will co-drive with the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3 team of Jack Hawksworth and Scott Pruett.
Pruett has been on the podium at Road Atlanta the last three times he raced and said he remains optimistic about a positive result for the Lexus cars on the 2.54-mile, 12-turn track. He also believes that testing earlier this season by the 3GT Team at Road Atlanta will prove beneficial during this weekend’s race.
“I’d love for us to wrap up with a podium this weekend,” Pruett said. “I’m anxious to see how much we’ve gained this season by going back to a track that was one of our very first tests and I’m hopeful we’ll have a great race to end the season.”
Pruett said he’s happy to share driving duties with 19-year old Cindric. “He’s driven the car and while I haven’t driven with Austin, Jack has so I’m pretty sure the integration will be seamless,” he said.
Cindric, who took first place in the Camping World Truck Series race in September at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park, drove with Hawksworth in the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3 during endurance races earlier in the season.
“I get along really well with Jack and Scott brings a load of experience, so it’s kind of cool for me to have this opportunity,” Cindric said. “Road Atlanta is one of my favorite tracks and we know we have the speed in this car, so I think we just need to execute everything well. Make no mistakes and we can be successful.”
Joining the racing team of Sage Karam and Robert Alon in the No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 is Ian James. James, who raced with Karam in the No. 14 during earlier endurance races this year, has been racing in various series throughout the season.
“Since I last raced with 3GT in Sebring, I’ve had a successful season with six wins,” James said. “I’d really like to cap the year off with a win here at Road Atlanta with 3GT.”
Alon said he’s looking forward to the 10-hour endurance race, a change from the sprint races of the last few weeks.
“I like these races, it takes a different mental approach and I train physically harder,” he said. “I’ve raced at Road Atlanta couple times and it’s a really fun track and I’m looking forward to driving with Ian James.”
Recording a win or a podium has eluded the team, but the year has not been without progress. The team has earned 11 top-ten finishes between the two cars. Both cars have finished top five. The No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3 finished fifth at Watkins Glen. Hawksworth had the fastest lap in the GTD class at the Glen and took fastest lap at Road America. The team’s first pole position went to Sage Karam when he set a track record at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park and where the No. 14 finished fifth.
Karam is happy to be back at Road Atlanta. “It’s one of those tracks I’ve always clicked well at,” he said. “I’ve had good results whenever I’ve raced there. Plus, we’ve tested there and did well in testing. I’m looking forward to this.”
Hawksworth, who set a track record at Road Atlanta when he was driving LMPC, said he’s been looking forward to this race all year.
“After a string of personal best performances this year I had my worst race of the season at Laguna Seca last month and I am really motivated to get to the front and stay there at Road Atlanta,” Hawksworth said. “It helps that we’ve tested there, so going back with track knowledge and an understanding of how the car works here, is going to be really helpful.”
The 10-hour race is scheduled for a green flag at 11:05 a.m. (ET) on Saturday, Oct. 7. Live coverage of IMSA’s 20th Anniversary Motul Petit Le Mans from Road Atlanta will begin on FS1 at 10:30 a.m. (ET) and move to FS2 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. with live coverage continuing from 2:30 to 5 p.m. on FOX Sports GO and from 5 p.m. until 9:30 p.m. on FS2.
About 3GT Racing
3GT Racing was formed to race the Lexus RC F GT3. Owned and operated by five-time Trans-Am Series Champion, Paul Gentilozzi and his longtime partners, Tony and John Gentilozzi, the East Lansing, Michigan-based team principals have been involved in motorsports for more than 46 years and have claimed more than 75 victories and 15 manufacturer and driver championships.