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Magnus Racing Survives Quiet Weekend at Mid-Ohio

LEXINGTON, Ohio (July 31, 2017) – Continuing with another traditional “sprint” weekend of the Pirelli World Challenge, Magnus Racing would complete the latest round of competition at the famed Mid-Ohio Sports Car course with a relatively quiet weekend. Taking top honors for the team, John Potter would highlight his weekend with a fourth-place finish in class, while Spencer Pumpelly would endure a difficult weekend not of his doing.

“We definitely made some progress over the weekend, but definitely had our challenges,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and driver John Potter. “I actually feel our cars are running very well, setup-wise we feel like we’re right where we need to be. For a variety of reasons, we’re struggling a bit with matching our power against some of our competitors, which has less to do with Audi and more to do with series restrictions on the car. Unfortunately that deficit means we’re struggling to be able make passes on our competitors, and there’s not much you can do from that point. On the positive side, I’m relatively happy with my weekend personally. Top-five in both weekends meant solid points, in the series’ sprint championship we’re well situated in the point standings.”

Driving the No. 44 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS, John Potter would enjoy a solid points weekend. For Saturday’s Race One, the Utah resident would qualify fifth in the GTA class, leading to a trouble-free race where he would advance on position in the closing laps, taking fourth on the day. For Sunday’s Race Two, a similar story would follow, with John once again starting fifth in class, but engaged in a relentless nose-to-tail battle among the top-five, with Potter ultimately advancing to fourth in the final corner of the last lap.

The result would bolster John’s second-place ranking in the series GTA-class Sprint Standings, with only two races remaining.

For Spencer Pumpelly, filling in for Pierre Kaffer in the No. 4 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS, a challenging series of races would hamper his weekend. With a reputation as one of the best GT drivers in the country, the shortcomings of overall power would create a massive challenge for the Lime Rock winner to be able to mount a significant challenge. Qualifying 10th overall for Saturday’s Race One, the difficulties of passing at Mid-Ohio became evident, with Spencer unable to advance on the competitors in front of him. Meanwhile, a competitor behind him would make a failed pass in to Turn Four, pushing Pumpelly wide at the exit and in to the grass, with Spencer ultimately finishing twelfth. Worth noting, the competitor would be penalized for his failed maneuver.

Sunday’s Race Two wouldn’t prove any better, with Spencer suffering a mechanical issue before the race even started, leaving him to start from the back of the pack at a track notorious for lack of passing opportunities.

“This wasn’t the weekend we were hoping for, but I’m thankful for the opportunity,” stated Pumpelly. “Mid Ohio is a tough track in which to pass, and combined with the nature of GT3 cars, and the challenges we’re having with power, it was practically impossible. The car was actually very good, and I think under different circumstances we might have shown really well, but for a number of reasons it just wasn’t our weekend. I appreciate everything the team did to make it all work, and I really enjoy driving for the team.”

While the next round of sprint competition will not be for another six weeks in Sonoma, the Pirelli World Challenge will actually be back on track in two weeks’ time for the next round of “SprintX” competition at Utah Motorsport Campus, a more endurance-focused format with two drivers in each car. Spencer Pumpelly will once again return to action for that weekend with Pierre Kaffer, while Marco Seefried will also return as a teammate to John Potter.