BOWMANVILLE, ONTARIO, CANADA —The dramatic first-place finish for the #81 Racing to End Alzheimer’s BMW 328i at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park was a true testament to teamwork, preparation, skill – and the wild shifts of fortune that teams and fans have come to expect over the course of the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge season.
With just a week to get the Legistics/Veristor/YouRulz-sponsored car race-ready after the grueling run at Watkins Glen, the Bimmerworld crew delivered. “We had speed all weekend and were really fast right off the trailer,” driver Devin Jones said. “It made my job pretty easy. I was able to go out there and get a pretty big gap.”
Jones won the ST class pole, setting a new track record. He also laid down the fastest lap of the two-hour race. By the time he pitted to pass the car over to co-driver Nick Galante, the team had a comfortable 40-second lead.
Then suddenly everything changed.
A full-course caution was called on lap 46, obliterating the lead and relegating Galante to the number two spot behind Mark Pombo in the #52 Mini. With the track heating up and cars starting to slide, both Galante and Pombo had contact with one of the GS cars on turn 2.
With just six laps to go in the race, the #52 Mini succumbed to damage sustained in the dust-up and was forced to stop off course. The race stayed green as the Mini was removed, sealing the victory for the #81 BMW.
“They had some trouble after some contact, which is unfortunate,” Galante said after the race. “I hope those guys recover and can fight us the rest of the season.”
With this win (their second of the season), the Racing to End Alzheimer’s team catapulted to the top of the Street Turner (ST) point standings in the hard-fought series. Their #81 BMW 328i (F30 chassis) also leads the class’s VP Fuels Front Runner Award standings at the season’s halfway point.
The Canadian Tire Motorsport Park 120 will air on Sunday, July 15th on FS1 (check local listings for times). The Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge continues with Round 6 on July 20-21 at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Connecticut.