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Monday
Jun262017

John Potter, Magnus Racing Take Consecutive Second-Place Finishes at Road America

Monday
Jun262017

...Pierre Kaffer Was There Too

 

Thursday
Jun222017

Magnus Racing Returns to Sprint Action at Road America

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (June 22, 2017)- Following three rounds of the more endurance-oriented “SprintX” championship, Magnus Racing will return to the roots of the Pirelli World Challenge series, taking to the scenic Road America circuit for a double-header in the traditional sprint format. Arriving with a victory at the most recent round at Lime Rock Park, drivers Pierre Kaffer and John Potter will return to action in the GT and GTA categories, with an eye on continuing their podium momentum.

“It’s great to be back to the traditional sprint format,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and driver John Potter. “It’s such a unique experience, coming from our endurance background, to know that you don’t have to hand the car over; it’s definitely a different perspective. Obviously we’re coming from a good amount of momentum from Lime Rock, but Road America couldn’t be more opposite of a circuit. We’re going from one of the smallest tracks on the calendar to one of the biggest, and it definitely presents a whole new challenge for our setup. Our last sprint race at Long Beach was my first podium in the series, so hopefully we can continue where we left off.”

Heading to the 4-mile, 14-turn circuit, located in Wisconsin’s scenic Elkhart Lake. Road America will serve as the largest track that the series visits in 2017. Featuring long straights, uphill climbs, and a number of fast corners, the course requires the most from nearly every performance element of both car and driver. While always a fun event for the team, mixed results have greeted them in previous years, including everything from podium finishes to one of the first mechanical DNF’s ever experienced by the group.

Kaffer will arrive in search of his best Pirelli World Challenge result. Returning from the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the German will be in search of his first podium finish in the series despite several strong runs.

Driving the No. 4 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS, the German has high ambitions for Road America.

“Road America is always a favorite track for many drivers,” stated Kaffer. “It’s what we could consider a classic. Fast corners, high speed almost everywhere, you really have to be on the limit to get the maximum. It’s tough to say how we’ll do because the layout really rewards different strengths with different cars, but I know everyone at Magnus will do their best to get the maximum out of our Audi. I look forward to it and really hope we can get our best result of the season together.”

For John Potter in the No. 44 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS, a return to sprint competition is one to look forward to. At the last “Sprint” round in Long Beach, the Utah resident took his first series podium with third, and hopes to continue that trend in to this weekend’s festivities.

Official practice begins today, with a double-header of races in conjunction with the Verizon IndyCar Series on Saturday and Sunday. Race One will take place on Saturday, June 24 at 5:30PM ET, with Race Two on Sunday, June 25 at 10:55AM ET. All races will be streamed live at www.world-challenge.com/streamvideo/

Wednesday
May312017

FULL REPORT: Magnus Racing Takes First Victory in Pirelli World Challenge at Lime Rock

LAKEVILLE, CONNECTICUT (May 31, 2017) – Following an hour of hard driving and clever strategy at the historic Lime Rock Park, the Magnus Racing No. 4 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS of Spencer Pumpelly and Dane Cameron would take their debut victory during Saturday’s sixth round of the Pirelli World Challenge SprintX Championship. Following a car-best second place in Friday’s Race One, a combination of pit strategy and strong “in-laps” by Cameron would hand the team the lead by Saturday’s halfway point, with Pumpelly closing the race by building the gap further. Similarly, a strong run by the No. 44 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS of John Potter and Andrew Davis would net a fourth-place finish in addition to Saturday’s sixth-place finish.

“We couldn’t be happier with the results for the No. 4 team,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and co-driver John Potter. “Our first win in the Pirelli World Challenge is something we’ve been chasing after all year, so to finally achieve it at a place like Lime Rock is very satisfying. Spencer and Dane proved strong all week, and it’s something everyone on the team has been striving for. For our No. 44 effort, we’re of course always after a podium, but we walked away with a clean car and continued to learn a lot. It was great having Andrew as a teammate and we all wish him the best moving forward.”

With primary teammate Pierre Kaffer unavailable due to a schedule conflict, full-season SprintX driver Spencer Pumpelly would welcome a new teammate to the No. 4 program, reigning IMSA Prototype champion Dane Cameron. While a Magnus debutante, Cameron would enter the festivities as no stranger to GT racing, including winning the IMSA GTD crown in 2014.

During Friday’s Race One, Pumpelly would put in a strong qualifying run to grid the Audi in third for the start, wasting no time in the opening laps to seize the opportunities in traffic by elevating himself to second, hounding the lead Porsche for much of his opening stint. During the series-mandated driver change, Cameron would jump in to close the race, setting strong lap times but unable to mount a significant challenge for the lead as tires faded. Still the best result in the history of the No. 4, the team would cross the line in second.

With Saturday’s Race Two having a grid set by Race One’s fastest laps, a strong lap by Pumpelly would see the No. 4 start the day on the front row, just barely off the pole-sitting Porsche of Marc Lieb. With the driver order inverted, Cameron would take on starting duties for the team, when calamity would ensue next to him as a hard charging Ferrari would send the pole-sitter spinning in to the guardrail, with Cameron lucky to avoid the mess but allowing the No. 8 Cadillac of Jordan Taylor to slip through in the process.

Doing his best to chase down Taylor, Cameron would match the Cadillac turn-for-turn, repeatedly demonstrating the strength of both driver and car, but finding the tricky nature of Lime Rock Park nearly impossible to pass on. Opting to preserve his tires, Cameron would give chase for much of the run, but it wasn’t until pit-stops would emerge that the team would mount their real challenge.

Allowing the Cadillac to pit one lap earlier, Cameron would use the clear track in front of him to push as hard as possible before he came in to the pits, meanwhile the Cadillac would re-join the field stuck in traffic, all playing in to the hands of Magnus Racing’s strategy to gain track position. With Pumpelly in the car and minimum pit-stop time fulfilled, the Georgia resident would re-join ahead of the Cadillac with less than 30 minutes remaining.

While traffic would prove difficult to keep his challenger behind him, Spencer once again proved his place among the best in the sport by managing the pace, ultimately gaining a small gap over the course of the final minutes to take victory.

This would serve as not only the first Pirelli World Challenge victory for the team, but also the first overall win in team history. 

 “I’m really happy we could deliver for all of the guys today,” stated Pumpelly. “This series is incredibly competitive, and you have to capitalize on every opportunity you can, everyone executed perfectly today. Dane had an awesome opening stint and the team played the strategy perfectly to gain the track position we needed; by time the car was given to me I knew I simply had to manage the traffic and make sure I didn’t open the door for the No. 8. I appreciate Michael Cooper racing so clean today, and similarly it’s a shame that Pat Long and I weren’t able to resume our fight from yesterday. Regardless, this one was for the whole team.”

For Dane Cameron, who currently has a 100% podium record with the team, a great experience was shared.

“I’m really happy I could be part of this experience,” stated Cameron. “Magnus Racing is a long-proven team, and this week just furthered that. It was a crazy opening lap and I’m glad the incident wasn’t more serious, it’s too bad that such a strong competitor was taken out that way. Regardless, it was great being able to fight with Jordan Taylor just like we do in prototypes. I knew it was critical to hand over a clean car to Spencer so I didn’t want to take any big risks, and when the opportunity to capitalize on a clean track came I knew we had to take advantage. Spencer proved why he’s one of the best guys out there, and similarly I was very impressed with the whole Magnus team, I’m very grateful for the opportunity.”

For the No. 44 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS, a quiet but competitive event was in store for Potter and new teammate Andrew Davis. With primary teammate Marco Seefried also out with a schedule conflict, the experience of long-time GT veteran Davis became the ideal replacement.

During Friday’s Race One, Potter would put together solid series of opening laps, including the fastest race lap for the No. 44, as he made work of the field in front of him. With tire wear being a serious consideration at Lime Rock, the focus would eventually turn to tire management, with John never putting a foot wrong by time his stint would come to a close. Davis would take over just before the halfway point, setting consistent laps but settled in to sixth, where the car would finish. 

For Saturday’s Race Two, Davis would take on starting duties, once again settling in to a strong rhythm in pursuit of a top-five, with the team pitting him at the final 30 minutes. From there it was back to Potter, who immediately began to gain ground on the field in front of him. While the gap to the third-place No. 54  machine would continue to shrink as the laps wore on, John simply ran out of time to be able to mount a real challenge, ultimately settling for the fourth position at the checkered flag.

 

For Andrew Davis, back with the team for the first time since 2010, an appreciation for the experience was evident.

“I really appreciate the opportunity to come back,” stated Davis. “While Magnus has a fun reputation, they truly are a very professional and well-run team, I’m glad I was able to witness such a great day for them first-hand. John is a great teammate and ran some really great lap times, and while of course we both wanted a podium, we were able to do the most with what we had and should be satisfied with the run. I look forward to following the team’s success and wish them the best moving forward.”

With Lime Rock serving as the fifth and sixth SprintX rounds, all series attention now returns to the traditional “sprint” format of the series, with solo-driver efforts taking over at the next round in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Once again joining the Verizon IndyCar Series, Magnus Racing and the whole of the Pirelli World Challenge will be at the scenic Road America circuit from June 23-25, with Potter driving the No. 44 and Pierre Kaffer returning to the No. 4. 

Tuesday
May232017

Dane Cameron, Andrew Davis Join Magnus Racing for Lime Rock

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (May 23, 2017) – With two of the team’s “regular” drivers set to miss this weekend’s fifth and sixth rounds of the Pirelli World Challenge SprintX championship, Magnus Racing is pleased to announce the addition of Dane Cameron and Andrew Davis to the team. Taking to the treacherous Lime Rock Park for a double-header series of races this Friday and Saturday, Cameron will join Spencer Pumpelly in the No. 4 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS, while Davis will join John Potter in the the No. 44 entry.

“It great to bring two very well regarded drivers to the team for Lime Rock,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and co-driver John Potter. “Andrew Davis is actually a team alumni from several years ago, and has since gone on to a number of great accomplishments, while Dane Cameron is new to us, but his résumé speaks for itself. Lime Rock is always such a challenging track to visit, we’re glad to have two veterans with us. It’s been a track of mixed fortune for us, but one of our greatest Audi highlights of 2016 came there, so hopefully we can continue where we left off.”

Joining the No. 4 entry, Dane Cameron will make his Magnus debut as one of the most accomplished sports car drivers at only age 28. Not only is the California native the reigning IMSA WeatherTech Championship Prototype champion, but he also took the same honors in the series’ GTD category in 2014. Prior to that, Dane had a remarkable junior category career, winning the Pro Mazda championship, Formula Palmer Audi championship, as well as Formula Russell championship. Known for his diversity behind a number of machines, Cameron has raced in a number of different prototype vehicles, GT manufacturers, and open wheel cars.

While new to the team, Dane hopes his experience at Lime Rock should suit everyone well.

“I’m extremely thankful to Magnus Racing for bringing me in this weekend,” stated Cameron. “The team is one of the most known in the scene, and their performance on track has been really impressive in recent years. I’m excited to learn how things operate within the group, and being able to team up with a driver like Spencer, one of the best GT guys out there, is something I really look forward to. Lime Rock is always a tricky place to visit, but I’m confident the Audi will be really strong there. I look forward to experiencing all that the team and series has to offer." 

No stranger to the team, Andrew Davis will serve a welcome return to the No. 44 entry. One of the most experienced GT drivers in the modern era, the Georgia native has amassed a number of accolades over his career. Most notably, Andrew won the GT championship in the former GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series in 2011, followed by a second championship in the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge GS category in 2015. Adding that to nearly a dozen victories in a variety of GT-style machinery, Davis has earned a reputation as not only one of the most reliable drivers in the scene, but also one of the most positive influences within any organization. In 2010, he joined Magnus Racing for their Petit Le Mans debut, and he currently competes full-time with the Audi R8 LMS in the IMSA ranks.

For Andrew, a chance to return to the familiar Magnus home is one he looks forward to.

“It’s great to be back with Magnus,” stated Davis. “I’ve known most of the guys in the team for a long time, and it’s a great group. Joining John for the latest rounds of SprintX competition should be pretty intense, Lime Rock is always a track you have to be very heads up at, but the team has had great success there. This is my second year racing with an Audi full time, and while the tire is very different there’s still a lot that can translate. It should be a fun weekend.”

Magnus Racing’s last visit to Lime Rock Park came in 2016 in another series, also with the Audi R8 LMS. During that race, a strong race pace would show, with team making an incredible run through the field to take victory, their second of the season.

As a two-day show, official practice, qualifying, and the first race will take place on Friday, May 26, with Race Two taking place on Saturday, May 27. Friday’s race will be at 3:55PM ET, while Saturday’s at 1:20PM ET, both available online at www.world-challenge.com/streamvideo/