SRT Motorsport closed the gap on TUDOR Championship GTLM championship leaders Corvette Racing after last weekend’s Oak Tree Grand Prix at the Virginia International Raceway, with the #93 finishing fifth and the #91 behind in sixth.
Jonathan Bomarito and Kuno Wittmer in the #93 Viper overcame a penalty for avoidable contact with a GTD car during Wittmer’s first stint, a call which the team says is ‘questionable’, and a trip across the grass for Bomarito after he jumped off a curb, to finish in P5, 2.595 seconds behind race winners Risi Competizione.
“Wow. That’s almost all I can say,” said Bomatito. “Ups and downs for us like crazy. Highs and lows. In the end, I’m counting my blessings that we finished fifth and two spots ahead of the leader. Hat’s off to the guys. The only reason that happened is because of the team’s strategy and their good pit stops.
“From the driver’s standpoint, we had a rough day – both Kuno and myself – but we made it through. We’re really looking forward to Circuit of the Americas and Road Atlanta. Those are two great tracks for us. We’re already thinking about that.”
For Marc Goossens and Dominik Farnbacher things looked bright, with Farnbacher moving into the lead from third on lap one of the GT only race, with Goossens also having a turn in the lead during the first half of the race. That was until the full course caution, with the SRT team mistiming a stop dropping the car down the order to fifth, although still in the lead pack. Fifth was soon to become sixth, with the #91 acting as a rear gunner for the #93, enabling them to gain maximum championship point.
“The Viper was fantastic today,” said Goossens. “It was really good straight out of the box. I could dominate the race from the beginning to get by the BMW in the first corner, and at the esses I forced the 62 car into a mistake and he went off without touching and from that point on I was leading.
“I was very comfortable with the car and I told Bill Riley and the guys it was an outstanding setup and the car was very neutral, very nice to drive and I was very happy with it. It was very consistent. After one hour, I came to pit and I thought we might be in a very good spot for a victory or even a podium. My teammate did a great job and Bill did a great job, but luck was not with us.
“There were yellows there that shouldn’t have been there and sometimes that’s good and sometimes that’s bad. We only finished sixth without any problems and incidents, so to finish so far back is a bit frustrating, but it’s good because we’re making up ground on the leader in the championship.”