K-PAX Racing made their return to Pirelli World Challenge a successful one, winning the first of two GT races at Sonoma Raceway.
This came a week after the team was forced to retire from the Miller Motorsports Park rounds due to Balance of Performance adjustments that their McLaren 650S GT3s could not meet.
Kevin Estre took his fourth win of the season when he passed Renger van der Zande midway through race one. Although team-mate Robert Thorne didn’t get a strong race result, he did set the fastest lap time following a tyre change, earning him race two pole position.
“I’m really happy and proud of this victory after two or three really hard weekends,” said Estre, following Saturday’s race. “I’m really happy for the team because they put in so much hard work in the past few weeks, and also this weekend. Finally, we made it to the podium and to victory. It’s been a long time. The car was just perfect through the race and we were really more consistent than the others, and that’s what brought us this win.”
Race two saw the McLarens start from first and fourth, and a variety of incidents including a full course caution denied them a race win, but they did finish second and fourth, taking some important points for the championship standings.
“It was a great race today,” added Robert Thorne. “I’m happy to get the car into the top 5 and I’m happy for the whole team. I thought we had both cars on the podium there, but we had some issues with lapped traffic and got bumped back to 4th. I’m still happy with the team and the car. Big thanks to McLaren GT for working with us on the standing starts. We’re definitely back in the hunt going back into the last race. Maybe we can get a good championship result.