United Autosports finished on the podium at the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen today, as Jim McGuire, Wayne Boyd and Guy Smith finished third after six hours of racing.
The trio were entering the second IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race of the season after racing at the Sebring 12 Hours back in March. Jim started the race from fifth after qualifying the previous day. Jim made a good start and was running third during the opening stint, with temperatures running in the 30’s. Both Wayne and Guy had to single stint their sessions behind the wheel of the #22 towards the end of the race, with Guy bringing the car home in third place.
United Autosports were also making their IMSA LMP3 debut this weekend, with their #2 Ligier JS P320. With very little track time, the team hit the ground running with free practice on Friday afternoon. The driver crew of Niklas Kruetten, Edouard Cauhaupe and Austin McCusker instantly got up to pace, with Austin clinching pole position on Saturday afternoon. Austin made a good start to the race and pulled a gap to the second placed LMP3 car, until an electrical issue and then a spin, which ended up with heavy contact into the wall put the team back two laps. Surprisingly, the handling of the car wasn’t too heavily compromised after the impact and both Edouard and Niklas were able to show the pace they had in the early stages of the weekend, bringing the car home in fifth place in the LMP3 class.
The team now move onto the fourth round of the European Le Mans Series and the third round of the Michelin Le Mans Cup at Monza on 9-11 July. The next IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship round for United Autosports will be the Motul Petit Le Mans in November.
“What a fantastic effort to get on the podium at Watkins Glen. It speaks volumes of the capability of United Autosports to be on the podium in the second endurance event. Our set up was done back at base, we had no testing and limited running. I’m proud to be part of the team and to run with great drivers like Wayne and Guy.”
“Delighted to be on the podium on my first trip to Watkins Glen. I think we did really well from having no testing like the other teams and limited running in free practice and for us to get on the podium and show good pace is testament to United. It was a tough race. It’s a very physical track. It was an eye opener but I think we all did really well.”
“It was a tricky race, but the result was good. I’d have liked to have been a bit closer to the battle with the top two cars, but to say this is our first time here with limited running and a lot to learn, it’s a difficult track. But the car ran faultlessly, and we finished on the podium so can’t really ask for much more than that.”
“Obviously it was a difficult race for us. The pace was good all weekend, which was surprising as we had no testing and limited track time. The team did a really good job. Austin had a great start and had built up a gap but then a couple of things didn’t go our way. Austin hit the wall, suffering a lot of damage. The car was difficult to drive but I think a lot more would have been possible without the damage.”
“The experience was good, but it was a really hard race. I enjoyed it a lot though. Racing in America is really different to in Europe, I love the racing here and I hope I can return again and do another IMSA race.”
“It was a late deal put together, but the car rolled off the truck really quick. The team brought a really good car here and we got a pole position on the team’s debut. I had a good start, and I pulled a big gap, then we suffered an issue and I had a bit of a mistake and I ended up in the wall. I handed the car over to Edouard and Niklas a bit damaged, so it was difficult. But good pace at the end showed where we could have been. We had the car and the team to be in the top three if not win the race so it’s sad to be fifth but at least we came home to finish.”
“I’m proud of the team on our IMSA LMP3 debut. They had the car and the pace to win, but one thing or another meant that couldn’t happen. Our LMP2 guys getting on the podium was also awesome. Bring on Petit.”
“From pole position, you always expect to win the race, but we led and pulled away and looked in control, but with a mistake that put us in the wall and caused a lot of damage, I’m surprised we got to the finish never mind finish fifth. Quite amazing pace from the three of them when you look at the car now with so much damage. Disappointing not to win from pole but good to finish. And of course it was nice to be on the podium in LMP2, especially after the disappointment at Sebring, but it was good to come here, to such a hard race and come through unscathed and get a podium with Jim, Wayne and Guy.”
Source. United Autosports