VIR Preview: Wright Motorsports Gears Up for GT Weekend in Virginia
(August 19, 2020) – Twenty cars are set to compete in this weekend’s Michelin GT Challenge at VIR, the first of two GT-only events on the 2020 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Wright Motorsports will head into round five with the No. 16 1st Phorm Porsche 911 GT3 R, driven by Ryan Hardwick and Patrick Long. Wright Motorsports will also enter the No. 45 Porsche GT3 Cup car of Charlie Luck in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama.
The wet conditions from Road America may travel to Danville, VIRginia this weekend, currently predicting possible thunderstorms each day of the event. With a length of 3.27 miles, VIRginia International Raceway provides beautiful scenery and intense competition within its 17 turns. Its sweeping turns make passing challenging, but offer great side-by-side battles amongst sports car racing competitors.
2020 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship
The pair of Hardwick and Long most recently put on a strong performance at Road America earlier this month, sailing though a sudden Wisconsin monsoon to finish in fifth place, leaving the event fourth in the GTD-class team championship standings. This weekend’s two hour and forty-minute race will only include two of the four IMSA classes, with both prototype classes not competing in the GT-only event.
IMSA Radio will offer its comprehensive coverage for qualifying and the race, live without commercial interruptions. The race will take place on Saturday, August 22 at 2:00PM ET and will stream live via NBC Sports TrackPass. Fans can catch the full NBC Sports Network production tape-delayed on Sunday, August 23 at 10:00AM ET. For full schedule and event information, visit the Michelin GT Challenge at VIR page.
Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama
Charlie Luck kicked off his 2020 race season earlier this month at Road America, starting the year with a second-place finish in the No. 45 Porsche GT3 Cup car. The single-make series of 17 cars will bring tight competition and close battles for all 45 minutes of both races, set to run Saturday at 5:10PM ET and on Sunday at 11:45AM ET. The pair of races will stream live for free on imsa.tv, and live commentary will be provided by IMSA Radio. For all series information, visit imsa.com.
I always look forward to racing at VIR! It’s such a fun track to drive, and I can’t wait to take our GT3 R flat out through the uphill esses and down into the Hog Pen corner! I’m also excited about the GT classes having the track to ourselves and being the focus for this event. I’m looking forward to a good race for our Wright Motorsports team at VIR.
The technicality of VIR has bode well for the Porsche 911 the last few times we’ve visited the track. As a driver, you love a circuit that challenges you with high-speed twists and turns, blind rises, and lots of curb usage. At the same time, track position is key, as it’s not an easy track to overtake on. Fewer cars on the track means that the race runs more in a sprint fashion than it can with prototypes. Ryan Hardwick has been progressing well and the Wright Motorsport guys have this 1st Phorm car tuned up. We want to go for a podium this weekend, and we think it’s a realistic result to achieve.
I generally run well at the track and I’m looking forward to dealing with the rain or the dry, and whatever comes our way.