EAST LANSING, MI (Aug. 26, 2017) – Jack Hawksworth qualified P5 in the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3 in today’s 15-minute qualifying session for the Michelin GT Challenge at Virginia International Raceway. Hawksworth turned a fastest lap of 1:43.845.
With only 0.26 seconds separating them, Sage Karam qualified P6 in the No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3, with a fastest lap of 1:44.105.
The Michelin GT Challenge at VIR is an all-GT format race featuring only GTLM (GT LeMans) and GTD (GT Daytona). Nine GTLM cars and 16 GTD cars took part in the qualifying session.
Hawksworth, who was running P4, lost a position in the last lap. This was his first time driving at VIR.
“It was a pretty good session,” he said. “Both cars in the top six. My last lap was a little scruffy, probably could have been P4. The car felt pretty good. Good race balance, not so much a qualifying balance. I think we’re a little bit behind with the BoP this weekend. But all in all, a decent session.”
It was an exciting 15 minutes with the top five positions in the GTD class finishing less than half a second apart.
Karam said the No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 felt good and, while he would have preferred to be further up on the grid, he felt that the car was in good shape and that he ran a clean race.
“I was really happy with how it felt,” Karam said. “I feel like we’re really struggling with straight-line speeds right now, between both cars. So unfortunately, we’re fighting an uphill battle there. The team did a great job. When you see both cars finishing P5 and P6, and they started together, you can pretty much tell the drivers did everything they could.”
3GT Racing Technical Director, John Gentilozzi said the team came to Virginia with a set up that turned out to be less than what they hoped.
“Everybody worked really hard to get us in the right direction,” he said. “And by the time we went through qualifying, I thought both Jack and Sage ran pretty much perfect laps. I don’t know that there was anything left out of either car. We’re still working our way up to those other guys at the front, but come race time, we’re going to have a couple of great cars throughout the entire stint. And in the end, that is what’s important.”
Hawksworth will co-pilot with veteran sports car champion, Scott Pruett in the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3 and Robert Alon will share the No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 with Karam.
The green flag will fall on the 10th race in the 2017 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series Sunday, Aug. 27 at 1:35 p.m. The two-hour and 40-minute race will be streamed live at IMSA.com and televised on FS1.
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 they have claimed more than 75 victories and 15 manufacturer and driver championships.