Wednesday, Dec 08

Formal, Marcelli Roll to Lamborghini Super Trofeo Victory

Tuesday, Sep 14 441
By Mark Robinson
IMSA Wire Service
 
 
 A picture-perfect day at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca wound up just that on Sunday for Danny Formal and Kyle Marcelli, who dominated the second Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America race of the weekend.
 
Formal and Marcelli started from the pole position and were never headed in taking the overall and Pro class victory in the caution-free, 50-minute race. It marked the third win in the last four outings for the co-drivers of the No. 1 Prestige Performance with Wayne Taylor Racing, Lamborghini Paramus Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo Evo.
 
“We’ve just turned this thing around,” Marcelli said. “Big thanks to Wayne Taylor Racing having the confidence in us. Three wins in four races is pretty awesome. Our car struggled a little in the afternoon heat yesterday, we made a couple minor changes overnight and it was really good in the cool temperatures today.”
 
Formal started in the No. 1 Huracán on the 11-turn, 2.238-mile WeatherTech Raceway circuit and gapped a lead of nearly four seconds before the mandatory pit stop window opened 20 minutes into the race. Marcelli did even better, stretching the margin to 11.306 seconds at the checkered flag.
 
“We struggled at the beginning of the year and the team never stopped working,” Formal said. “And the car was just fantastic today. We struggled a little with Race 1 pace and worked with the engineers at Wayne Taylor and got a perfect car. I told the guys, ‘I’m going to take care of the tires for Kyle,’ got a nice little lead and Kyle just expanded, expanded, expanded it. I’m just so happy and so grateful for this opportunity.”
 
Pro class leader Richard Antinucci (No. 27 Dream Racing Motorsport, Lamborghini Las Vegas Huracán) finished second, allowing the two-time champion to stretch his lead to 13 points over Stevan McAleer (No. 16 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte Huracán) with but next month’s doubleheader round at Misano, Italy, remaining.
 
ProAm leaders Brandon Gdovic and Bryan Ortiz completed a weekend victory sweep in the No. 46 Precision Performance Motorsports, Lamborghini Palm Beach Huracán to all but clinch the class championship. They hold a 30-point lead with two races remaining.
 
“I think that about gives us mathematically the championship, as long as the cars make it over to Italy,” said Gdovic, who won the North American Am championship in 2015. “Even if it’s locked up, we’re not going to stop fighting for wins. Hopefully, we can go to Misano and get two more regular-season wins and then go for that World Finals championship.”
 
Ortiz was the star on Sunday, taking over the car third in class on the pit stop. The Puerto Rican driver charged to the front and then some, winning by nearly 30 seconds in Pro Am to give the duo their sixth win this season.
 
“Brandon did a great job the first stint saving the tires and managed the car,” Ortiz said. “When I got into the car, we had plenty of car to fight. We had a great pace the second part of the race, so we passed the cars in the class and were able to keep moving forward and have a great finish.”
 
Luke Berkeley (No. 23 Dream Racing Motorsport, Lamborghini Broward Huracán) achieved maximum points in the Am class over the weekend to take first place in the standings. The 17-year-old series rookie claimed the pole position and class win in both races. With an eye toward moving up in class next year, Berkeley has built a 15-point lead in the Am standings.
 
“I want to get some experience (racing against the Pro drivers) without disrupting them,” Berkeley said. “It was very good. Honestly, I just wanted to use this weekend to get a better point advantage in the championship and learn for next year. This race was perfect for that. I’m super stoked to get my first weekend sweep.”
 
John Hennessy (No. 33 O’Gara Motorsport/US RaceTronics, Lamborghini San Diego Huracán) continued his impressive recovery from an early season wrist injury, winning Sunday in LB Cup to notch his third victory in the past four races.
 
“It was good, especially after yesterday’s debacle crashing out,” Hennessy said. “I just had to shake that off. The idea was just to get a five-second lead and see what happens behind me. Stuff did happen and I was able to come in comfortably.”
 
A last-lap pass allowed Matt Dicken (No. 36 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte Huracán) to finish second in LB Cup and grab a one-point lead in the class standings over Mark Kvamme and Terry Olson (No. 47 Precision Performance Motorsports, Lamborghini Palm Beach Huracán), who finished third.
 
Drivers, teams and equipment head to Italy for the final two races of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America calendar Oct. 28-29 before they join competitors from the European series in the World Final on Oct. 30-31 at Misano.
Adam Sinclair

Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway more than 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.  

Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.

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