EAST LANSING, MI (May 3, 2018) — The 3GT Racing team won’t have far to go as they head to the next race in the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series. The Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, is only 230 miles from the team’s home in East Lansing, Michigan.
This will be the first sprint race of the season and marks IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s debut at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
It’s been a long time between races, 46 days since the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, and the 3GT Racing crew and drivers are more than happy to get back on the track. The team tested at Mid-Ohio on April 23.
Jack Hawksworth, driver of the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3 said he’s more than ready to see that green flag drop on Sunday, May 6.
“The test was great, and the track is really fun to drive,” Hawksworth said. “But it’s also a track that makes overtaking another car very difficult. So, the race can be a bit processional from a driver’s perspective. And the thing about sprint races is that you’re pushing 100 percent, right from the start.”
Hawksworth said anything can happen in the 2-hour, 40-minute race, but the test has left him feeling confident in the car and the crew. “Our team has really jelled,” he said. “The team has been together longer, and we’ve got good chemistry. Our pit stops are quicker, our car is more reliable and faster. We had good starts to the season. I’m feeling good about Mid-Ohio.”
David Heinemeier Hansson, co-driver with Hawksworth in the No. 15, said the last time he raced at Mid-Ohio was 2012. “And that was ALMS,” he said. “So, this will be an interesting change for sure. The last six years have been all about endurance, I like mixing it up,” he said.
The No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 will be sporting new sponsor logos for the race. Allegheny Health Network’s Autoimmunity Institute will be branded on the doors and Autoimmune Related Diseases Association, Inc. (AARDA) will be on the side. Kyle Marcelli, co-driver in the No. 14, has been ambassador for AARDA for two years.
Besides testing with the team in April, Marcelli accrued GTD driving experience at Mid-Ohio in 2016 and 2017.
“I’m fairly familiar with the course. I have a good feeling for which bumps and curves to use to your advantage,” he said, adding that with family and friends in the area, it feels a little like a second home.
The Canadian driver has high expectations for the race. “We were running top three for the first six hours of Daytona and Sebring,” Marcelli said. “I think we have the whole package now. There’s no reason to believe we can’t make the podium.”
Dominik Baumann, driver in the No. 15 Lexus RC F GT3, was happy with the April test at the Mid-Ohio course, which was new to him. But then every race for the rest of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season will be new for the Austrian driver.
Baumann said the course, known for its deceptively interrelated corners and changing elevations, made him feel right at home. “It reminds me of many European tracks,” Baumann said. “And it really suits the car.”
His strategy for prepping for the sprint race doesn’t change much from his endurance race prepping. Baumann said sprint race or longer doesn’t matter to him, his philosophy is simple: “When I’m in the car, I just go as fast as I can.”
The Mid-Ohio race begins at 1 p.m. on Sunday, May 6 and will be streamed live on FSGO with FS2 authentication. Or you can listen via IMSA.com, Radio LeMans.com and Sirius XM Radio.
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.