Long Named to AARWBA’s All-America Team for Third Time

December 15, 2011

Patrick Long has picked up a prestigious post-season honor, being named to the American Auto Racing Writers & Broadcasters Association’s All-America team, this year in the at-large category for winning his first championship in the Pirelli World Challenge Series. Long was named to AARWBA’s All-America team previously in 2005 and 2010, and capped the 2011 season with this important honorific. Despite missing one entire race event due to a testing commitment for the Porsche factory, Long claimed four pole positions and four race wins over the course of the World Challenge season, claiming the ultra-competitive championship with one full event left to run.

Beyond his exploits in the sprint-based World Challenge Series, Long had a typically busy racing season racing full-time with Flying Lizard Motorsports in the American Le Mans Series and displaying massive pace with the Lizards in their one-off showing at the Grand-Am Rolex 24 at Daytona. He impressed in his second year at the Australian V8 Supercars Gold Coast 600, and claimed pole position and finished second at the International Le Mans Challenge 6 Hours of Imola. Patrick and teammate Jörg Bergmeister endured a difficult beginning to their ALMS season, but rebounded to claim podiums at Lime Rock and Petit Le Mans, and claimed a scintillating win at the 6 hours of Laguna Seca – their third consecutive victory at the iconic Northern California track. Perhaps most importantly, he took the first overall victory in the innovative Porsche GT3 R Hybrid in the Nürburgring Long Distance Championship. Over the course of the year, Patrick raced in 5 different versions of a Porsche 911, as well as in a Daytona Prototype, an Australian V8 Supercar, and a front-wheel drive WTCC touring car.

Patrick commented, “Being named to the AARWBA All-America team is a proud achievement for me, because the Association pays close attention to all forms of racing – from drag racing to stock cars to sports cars – so to be grouped together with the best drivers from all those different disciplines is meaningful. Driving with TruSpeed Motorsport in the Pirelli World Challenge was an interesting and fun way to race this season, and it was definitely something that contrasted with what I’ve been doing for most of my career – endurance racing. I was forced to adjust to a car whose weight and balance changed almost every weekend, due to the Series’ performance balancing rules, and I had to re-learn how to do standing starts. I got off to a good start by setting pole and taking two wins on the opening weekend of the championship, but it was a dogfight all year long. I’m lucky that I get to race as frequently as I can, and I’ve tried over the course of my career to emulate guys like Mark Donohue and Dan Gurney, and be able to get into a variety of cars and adapt quickly.”

He continued, “To be named to the All-America team for the third time is special, because the three years I’ve been on the list, it’s been for different reasons. It feels great to win recognition from the people who pay the closest attention to racing in America, and I’m thankful to AARWBA. It’s an honor and a privilege!”