– Enduro Victories Add Rob Cohen and Bill Riddell to List of Weekend Race Winners
– Amelia Island Vintage Gran Prix up Next for International GT
SEBRING, Florida (March 7, 2016) – Rob Cohen and Bill Riddell joined the weekend’s list of race winners Sunday as the International GT Sebring Presented by RacerInk weekend came to a successful close with a one-hour Enduro for The Stuttgart Cup and The Maranello Cup at Sebring International Raceway.
Both Cohen and Riddell recovered from Saturday issues to solo drive to class victories in the one-hour Sunday morning finale. Cohen took top honors in The Maranello Cup in his No. 90 4 Corner Tire Shop F430 while Riddell scored The Stuttgart Cup 3.4-liter Cayman class win in his flat black No. 05 Racelink Cayman S that carries the white-striped livery of a Porsche 918 prototype.
Cohen and Riddell joined Saturday’s race winners, which included Rick Stavola, Jack Baldwin, Martin Burrowes, Roland Veit, Paul Reisman and Mark Sandridge, on an impressive list of eight different drivers that scored class wins on the opening weekend of 2016 International GT competition at Sebring.
Cohen’s win came in his debut race in International GT’s The Maranello Cup and he left Sebring impressed.
“It’s a really fantastic group to run with,” Cohen said. “What’s nice is the series brings the Ferraris and the Porsches together, which is really how it was meant to be. To go out and finish the weekend with an Enduro with all of us out there together mixing it up is really why I got into racing to begin with. The people who I’ve met here this weekend have all been wonderful, both on and off the track. A lot of courtesy on the track, friendly off the track.”
Cohen frequently found himself racing with Reisman’s chrome-hued No. 71 Hudson Historics 3.8-liter Porsche GT3 Cup entry and enjoyed every minute of it.
“Interestingly, I’m a Porsche guy more than I am a Ferrari guy, so I have a lot of time -actually more time – in a Porsche than I do in a Ferrari,” Cohen said. “So, I was really enjoying that aspect of it. For me, being in either seat is a great time but, again, to see us mix it up that way is kind of how it was intended. I thought it was fantastic, I enjoyed watching the way the Porsche was handling turns, which is slightly different than how my car handles them, but I understood having been in that chair before. It made it a lot of fun and I was just trying to manage the track and hopefully stay out ahead.”
Several Porsche competitors in The Stuttgart Cup also made their International GT debuts during the Sebring weekend, including 3.8-liter BGB Motorsports Cayman competitors Jim Cox and Alan Brynjolfsson.
Competing in his first auto race weekend of any kind, Brynjolfsson co-drove his No. 23 Alex Job Racing-themed Cayman S to Enduro class runner-up honors with Chris Hall. Brynjolfsson also drove solo to a third-place finish in the Saturday afternoon sprint race. Cox in turn hit the podium in both Saturday sprints, placing third in the morning race before improving to a second-place finish that afternoon in his No.38 Cayman S.
“I really didn’t know what to expect but found a great group of guys with spectacular cars and, more importantly, great in class racing,” Cox said. “It is close racing with guys that you knew by the end of the very first lap you could trust to race with them. Lots of great experiences on and off the track and I really appreciated the Winners Circle. We all spend a lot of money and a lot of time doing this so to get something more than a trophy tossed in your window as you’re rolling off track is pretty cool.”
Baldwin, in his No. 73 GTSport Racing Cayman S, swept all three races this weekend in the 3.8-liter Cayman class. The strong weekend run included third-place-overall finishes in a diverse field of International GT machinery in Saturday’s opening sprint and Sunday’s Enduro.
Sandridge scored a pair of weekend class victories in The Stuttgart Cup 3.8-liter GT3 class, finishing second overall each time in his No. 225 Team Salad Porsche GT3, which carries the livery of the Le Mans-winning Mobil 1 Porsche GT1. After a solo victory in Saturday’s afternoon sprint, Sandridge co-drove to the Enduro class win with longtime coach and colleague Joe Varde.
Stavola, Burrowes and Viet also doubled-up on weekend race wins. At the wheel of his black No. 22 Cayman S prepared by Racelink, Stavola swept both Saturday sprints and finished third in the Enduro in The Stuttgart Cup’s 3.4-liter Cayman class. Burrowes also swept both Saturday sprints and was the highest placing Ferrari overall in those races in his No. 46 Etcetera Racing F430. Viet took F458 honors in his No. 16 Pocono Sportscar-prepared Ferrari in both Saturday sprints.
Reisman won Saturday’s 3.8-liter GT3 sprint in The Stuttgart Cup in the No. 71 and then joined his son, John Reisman, in scoring runner-up honors in the Enduro. John Reisman, racing the No. 07 Hudson Historics Cayman S, joined Riddell and Stavola on the podium in the 3.4-liter Cayman class in The Stuttgart Cup.
Other competitors that closed out the weekend with podium showings in the Enduro included Rob Trollinger, who finished third in GT3 3.8-liter in his Goldcrest Motorsports No. 94 Porsche GT3 Cup car.
Tom Kievit and Scott Leder, racing the No. 27 Cayman S prepared by Racelink, podiumed in the Enduro with a third-place 3.8-liter Cayman-class finish in The Stuttgart Cup.
Justin Ehrlich was the overall winner in all three weekend races, co-driving in the Enduro with Rick DeMan, but his No. 11 4-liter Porsche GT3, prepared by DeMan Motorsport, is only eligible to compete as a non-points, exhibition-class entry.
Next up for International GT are The Stuttgart Cup and The Maranello Cup races at the Amelia Island Vintage Gran Prix at Fernandina Beach Airport, March 17 – 20. The official event entry form is available by clicking here while the race weekend provisional event schedule is available by clicking here.
– Cohen was the recipient of the weekend’s Pirelli Tire Award and was presented with a certificate for a full set of Pirelli P Zero racing tires. “The Pirelli Award, that’s pretty cool,” Cohen said. “There’s not a lot of organizations that go to that extra effort and all of the things they’ve provided for us this weekend with regards to driver comfort, awards, logistics and getting us track time. Everything was just fantastic.”
– Beginning just his second season of racing, Cox credits John Tecce and BGB Motorsports in preparing him for the step he took in International GT this past weekend. “Jumping into motorsports middle aged, they weren’t only a car builder and support team – they do both of those things very well – but they were really a guide to the world of motorsports,” Cox said. “John and the team at BGB have taken me step-by-step and they made sure I got the experiences I needed in the first year. Now I’m going to be a little bit more influential about where we go next.”
– Friday night’s 2015 Awards Celebration hosted by the Palm Beach Driving Club saw Sandridge honored in addition to last year’s top points finishers and championship-winning drivers. Succeeding Riddell, Sandridge was the second recipient of the Hudson Historics Sportsman Award in honor of Bob Akin. The award, which is Akin’s 1983 IMSA Camel GT Endurance Championship Trophy, is presented to the competitor each season that best displays a passion for motorsports, a successful race history, superior sportsmanship, a sharp wit, a courteous presence, a broad range of interests, devotion to family and friends and a record of contribution to the motorsports community, all traits characteristic of Akin.
About International GT: International GT is a North American racing series that includes three different championships for late model Porsche and Ferrari competitors. Home primarily to sportsman drivers, with the occasional professional driver/coach joining the action in endurance races, International GT annually presents The Stuttgart Cup and The Maranello Cup championships. The Stuttgart Cup includes two classes, one for Caymans and another division that features 996, 997 and other GT3 Cup cars from the last decade. With rare exception, all three divisions compete on track at the same time for individual class honors in their own and exclusive International GT run group at SVRA race events. Most race weekends feature a minimum of one enduro and two sprint “points” races that count toward the season championships. Learn more about International GT at www.IntlGT.com and follow us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/InternationalGT and Twitter @InternationalGT.
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