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Petit Le Mans: action-packed race between very tight teams expected at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta

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Expect to see the ultimate cat and mouse game in a GT Daytona (GTD) showdown in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Season Finale.

The Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta on November 13 promises to be a headache for the # 9 Porsche 911 GT3R from Pfaff Motorsports and the # 1 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 from Paul Miller Racing.

Only 50 points – the difference between a first and third place in the race – separate class leaders Laurens Vanthoor and Zacharie Robichon of Pfaff from second Bryan Sellers and Madison Snow at PMR. The No.9 Porsche will add Lars Kern to its roster for the 10-hour race, while Sellers and Snow will get an assist from Corey Lewis.

And if you’re really working the calculator, Roman De Angelis and Ross Gunn, who drive Team Heart of Racing’s # 23 Aston Martin Vantage GT3, are also very much on the lookout for in the most populous category of the WeatherTech Championship. . They are currently 177 points behind the duo Pfaff.

“I can’t think of two better teams to face against,” said Pfaff general manager Steve Bortolotti. “They are definitely the gold standard for the IMSA teams. It’s going to be interesting.

“All three cars are competitive from a performance balance standpoint,” added Bortolotti. “The IMSA has done a great job giving the three manufacturers a feeling that they are going to be competitive in Atlanta. It’s gonna be air combat until the end.

Making it more interesting, Pfaff Motorsports is in the process of moving to a larger racing store, which is undergoing renovations and inaccessible to the team. Yes, IMSA’s top GTD team and the popular “Plaid Porsche” don’t have a home right now.

“We have a lot to do to settle into our new permanent home in the Toronto area,” said Bortolotti. “We work with our hauler as if we are on the track right now. Our mechanics work hard to get the car ready.

When Pfaff arrives at Michelin Raceway, he will have a target on his back. The Paul Miller team – headquartered much closer to the Michelin Raceway in Buford, Georgia – are highly motivated to steal the title.

“The only chance we have to move forward is to take a chance and win,” said Sellers, an Atlanta-area resident. “They have had an incredibly strong season and have racked up a lot of points. For us, it is an uphill battle. In some ways, that puts us in an enviable position because we only have one goal: to win. Any team, in any class, that is mathematically alive, is going to try to win.

That’s why you can add the Aston Martin # 23 to the mix. Just use the # 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 as a warning to show how quickly things can change for better or for worse.

No.96 co-drivers Robby Foley and Bill Auberlen were leading the GTD points after finishing fourth at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in early September, but back-to-back results outside the top 10 have since pulled them out of the championship.

So there is a silver lining for the Aston Martin effort. Team principal Ian James said his drivers entered this competition ring wearing gloves and a mouthpiece.

“We have to show up and run and try to get as many points as possible in qualifying and then just run our race,” said James. “It’s out of our control because if the other guys finish in order, then we’re done with this.” We will do our best. “

It’s no surprise that Pfaff Motorsports enters the grueling 10-hour race with exactly the same state of mind to move forward.

“We are getting close to that because we have to beat these other two cars in the race,” said Bortolotti. “That’s our goal. Fifty points under the new points structure at IMSA is next to nothing.”

The WeatherTech Championship action at Michelin Raceway begins with practice on Thursday, November 11. Qualifying will take place the next day. The start of the race on the 2.54-mile, 12-turn road course is broadcast live on NBC at noon ET on Saturday, November 13, with coverage switching to NBCSN at 3 p.m. and ending shortly after 10 p.m. coverage also airs on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold, NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app, as well as on IMSA Radio.

Motul Petit Le Mans tickets are available now on RoadAtlanta.com.

BY GODWIN KELLY

For the time

Expect to see the ultimate cat and mouse game in a GT Daytona (GTD) showdown in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Season Finale.

The Motul Petit Le Mans on Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta on Saturday promises to be a bite for points – leading the # 9 Porsche 911 GT3R from Pfaff Motorsports and the # 1 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 from Paul Miller Racing.

Only 50 points – the difference between a first and third place in the race – separate class leaders Laurens Vanthoor and Zacharie Robichon of Pfaff from second Bryan Sellers and Madison Snow at PMR.

The No.9 Porsche will add Lars Kern to its roster for the 10-hour race, while Sellers and Snow will get an assist from Corey Lewis.

And if you’re really working the calculator, Roman De Angelis and Ross Gunn, who drive Team Heart of Racing’s # 23 Aston Martin Vantage GT3, are also very much on the lookout for in the most populous category of the WeatherTech Championship. .

They are currently 177 points behind the duo Pfaff.

“I can’t think of two better teams to face against,” said Pfaff general manager Steve Bortolotti. “They are definitely the gold standard for the IMSA teams. It’s going to be interesting.

“All three cars are competitive from a performance balance standpoint,” added Bortolotti. “The IMSA has done a great job giving the three manufacturers a feeling that they are going to be competitive in Atlanta. It’s gonna be air combat until the end.

To make it more interesting, Pfaff Motorsports is in the process of moving into a larger racing store, which is undergoing renovations and is inaccessible to the team.

Yes, IMSA’s top GTD team and the popular “Plaid Porsche” don’t have a place to feel at home right now.

“We have a lot to do to settle into our new permanent home in the Toronto area,” said Bortolotti. “We work with our hauler as if we are on the track right now. Our mechanics work hard to get the car ready.

When Pfaff arrives at Michelin Raceway, he will have a target on his back. The Paul Miller team, whose headquarters is much closer to the Michelin Raceway in Buford, arrive very motivated to steal the title.

“The only chance we have to move forward is to take a chance and win,” said Sellers, an Atlanta-area resident. “They have had an incredibly strong season and have racked up a lot of points. For us, it is an uphill battle. In some ways, that puts us in an enviable position because we only have one goal: to win.

Any team, in any class that is mathematically alive is going to try to win.

That’s why you can add the Aston Martin # 23 to the mix.

Just use the # 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 as a warning to show how quickly things can change for better or for worse.

No.96 co-drivers Robby Foley and Bill Auberlen were leading the GTD points after finishing fourth at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in early September, but back-to-back results outside the top 10 have since pulled them out of the championship.

So there is a silver lining for the Aston Martin effort.

Team principal Ian James said his drivers entered this competition ring wearing gloves and a mouthpiece.