Caution: The Story of Performance Tech at Long Beach
LOS ANGELES (April 14, 2018) – Performance Tech Motorsports had an abbreviated race weekend at Long Beach due to an incident in the Bubba Burger Grand Prix.
The one hour and 40-minute sprint race turned shorter after contact on lap one ended the race for the No. 38 Centinel Spine/ Restitute Health Prototype. Kyle Masson was behind the wheel when the contact occurred. Masson was sandwiched between the No. 52 and No. 99 when the three came together in Turn 1.
The three-car wide strategy caused the No. 52 to spin and sent Masson into the wall. The damage sustained left Masson stranded on track after the No. 52 continued. A tow truck brought Masson back to Turn 5 where the car was parked until a caution allowed the vehicle to be towed back to the designated workstation.
A full course caution came out with one hour remaining in the race. The team received the car at the workstation and immediately began diagnosing the problem. Though the crew gave every effort to put the No. 38 ORECA 07 LMP2 back on track, there was not enough time remaining in the race.
Both Masson and James French showed pace for a promising finish at Long Beach. The team was the highest qualifying ORECA in the Prototype Class and found themselves within the top 10 of the field during practice. French and Masson will have to wait for Round 4 of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship to display their prowess.
"I can't say we enjoyed our weekend at Long Beach," O'Neill said. "Sometimes that's just the way the weekend goes. Street courses always present more opportunity for contact. Kyle went three wide with two other cars and there as just no place for anyone to go when they went into the turn. It's not what you want, but we'll bounce back. We still have some time before the next race for this car."
The WeatherTech SportsCar Championship revs back up May 4-5 for the series return to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. The last race at Mid-Ohio was during the American Le Mans series days for Performance Tech Motorsports. Performance Tech will hope the gap in appearances at Mid-Ohio for the sports car series will provide a more level playing field for the Prototype Class.
Performance Tech Motorsports is back to work next weekend with the IMSA Prototype Challenge Presented by Mazda series. Round 3 takes place in, Birmingham, Alabama, at Barber Motorsport Park. Performance Tech will run six cars, including the Charles Wicht Racing/Performance Tech LMP3 entry.