ALTON, VIRGINIA (Aug. 18, 2018) – 3GT Racing’s Jack Hawksworth, driver in the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3, has added yet another pole to his growing collection in the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series.
A reporter called him “King of Poles and Fastest Laps,” after the lanky Briton found himself claiming his fourth Motul Pole award. This time after a fastest lap of 1:44:107 during the 15-minute qualifying session at the Michelin GT Challenge at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, VA.
Hawsworth’s other pole awards came from Mid-Ohio, Watkins Glen and Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
He and co-driver, David Heinemeier Hansson, have earned six top-ten finishes in the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3. Hawksworth has also recorded four of the quickest laps in the GTD class during racing this year at Mid-Ohio, Watkins Glen, Canada and Lime Rock. The No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3 has not ranked below P2 in qualifying since Watkins Glen.
The No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 team has earned five top-10 finishes, including a win and a podium and has qualified top-five in eight of the last nine races.
This afternoon, No. 14 driver, Kyle Marcelli qualified the No. 14, P4, with his fastest lap of 1:44:516.
With three races left in the season, including Sunday’s Michelin GT Challenge at VIR, the team from East Lansing has qualified in the top-five in seven of nine races.
The team ranks fifth among the 23 GT Daytona teams in the championship standings and has accumulated 11 top-ten finishes with the No. 14 and No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3.
Today’s qualifying session included some rain, which fell with about five minutes left. Hawksworth, who said he was certain he had a faster lap left to go, chose to hold off, rather than risk the rain.
“Honestly I had a bit of a scruffy start in the first laps,” he said. “I made a couple mistakes and I felt like I was on a better lap when it started raining, but it was enough. I was happy with it.”
Hawksworth said he was impressed that other teams were qualifying with their gold or professional driver.
“I thought it was good that everyone is running similar strategy,” Hawksworth said. “Car’s been working well, team’s been working well, David (Heinemeier Hansson) has been driving well. Should be in decent shape for a good race.”
3GT Racing’s Managing Partner, Paul Gentilozzi, said being up front is where the team should be.
“Jack did a great job, Kyle did a great job,” he said. “It’s wonderful to see the professional drivers in IMSA actually out there trying.”
Technical Director John Gentilozzi agreed. “Normally qualifying is an affair for Silver- or Bronze-rated drivers. Today many cars featured their gold or platinum driver,” he said.
“Usually we see a few of the faster drivers, but today we saw almost everyone bring out their big guns. It’s nice to measure yourself against everyone’s best shot.”
The Michelin GT Challenge, a two-hour, 40-minute race, will begin at 1:35 p.m. (ET) on Sunday. The action can be viewed live on FS1 starting at 1 p.m.
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 48 years and have claimed more than 75 victories and 15 manufacturer and driver championships.