Wright Motorsports Bounces Back with Two Podiums at VIRginia International Raceway

April 29, 2019

ALTON, VA (April 29, 2019) – After a turbulent start to the weekend, Wright Motorsports salvaged two podium finishes in Race 2 at VIRginia International Raceway. The caution free round saw a second place finish for the No. 58 Porsche 911 GT3 R of Patrick Long and Scott Hargrove and a third place podium for Anthony Imperato and Matt Campbell’s No. 91 Henry Rifles Porsche 911 GT3 R.

The team was in positive spirits after Saturday morning’s qualifying rounds. The first of two sessions saw Long lock in second and Imperato take the pro/am Pole position for Race 1. Race 2 qualifying saw Hargrove drive to third and Campbell qualify tenth, following a brief off-roading excursion.

– Race 1 –

Though it pleaded to be promising, Race 1 was one to forget for the Wright Motorsports team. A string of unfortunate luck hit the team head on after the No. 91 lost drive at the start and retired from pole. All systems appeared to be a go for the No. 58 Porsche 911 GT3 R after a great start allowed Long to stick his second place starting position.

From there, the Californian spent the next 45-minutes filling Alvaro Parente’s mirrors and defending his position from a charging Miguel Molina, before handing the controls off to Hargrove, who picked up right where he left off. During the final 4-minutes, the Canadian was putting heavy pressure on the Bentley for the lead when a misjudgment coming out of Turn 10, forced the No. 58 off course and into an early retirement.

– Race 2 –

Race two saw a much different storyline after a strong start by Hargrove allowed him around the Bentley into Turn 3 and right into the overall lead. The Porsche Selected driver was able to put his head down and extend the lead margin to six seconds, until the end of his stint, when a tire issue became apparent. The moment the pit window opened, Hargrove dove into the pits and Long reentered in third. While this effected the team’s strategy, Long was able to close the gap, take advantage of the second place car’s mishap and bring it home in second for the Wright Motorsports team.

After starting from an untraditional tenth overall and fifth in class, Campbell found himself right in the thick of things as he defended his position from fellow Porsche ace, Wolf Henzler. Despite struggling with the car, the Australian was able to make up one position before handing the Porsche off to Imperato fourth in class. From there, Imperato didn’t look back and drove the Henry Repeating Arms Porsche to a third-place podium in Pro/Am.

The Wright Motorsports team will retake the Blancpain GT World Challenge America stage May 16-19 for Rounds 5 and 6 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

Patrick said, “All things considered, we have to be really proud of our rebound to finish second. The car balance was really good. We had a bit of a conservative strategy after a tire issue at the start of the race. Unfortunately, that meant that a couple of cars jumped us in pitstops. We also had a bit of contact with the Ferrari which damaged our toe and left front splitter. It was a difficult race to persevere through, but we were there at the end and that’s what counted. It was a great day for our manufacturer’s championship attack.”