SRO ran three races each for the series’ GT4 and Touring Car classes on the weekend of August 28–30 at Road America. Bill Auberlen and James Walker in the #82 BimmerWorld M4 GT4 took the overall and Pro-Am class wins in the first GT4 SprintX race, while Harry Gottsacker and Nick Wittmer in the #28 ST Racing M4 GT4 took two Silver class wins in SprintX. In the Touring Car class, James Clay won the first two races and Toby Grahovec won the third with Clay on his tail.
In the first 60-minute GT4 SprintX race, Walker moved up from eighteenth on the grid and handed off to Auberlen, who found his way into the overall lead with about eighteen minutes remaining. He held on for the win, with Nick Wittmer in the #28 ST Racing M4 GT4 coming across the line second overall and first in the Silver class. The #82 M4 GT4 appeared to be on its way to a win in the second race, but Robby Foley in the #21 Flying Lizard Motorsports Aston Martin GT4 that he shared with Michael Dinan got by with a lap to go to take the overall and Pro-Am wins, leaving Walker and Auberlen second in class. The hood on the #28 car opened while Wittmer was leading the Silver class; he had to pull off to close it and then drive slowly back to the pits for repairs. The car did not complete the race. The Silver class win went to Mads Siljehaug and Nicolai Elghanayan in the #71 Marco Polo Motorsports KTM X-Bow. Jon Miller and Samantha Tan finished third in Silver in the #38 ST Racing M4 GT4. Auberlen and Walker fell back to seventh in class in race three; Dinan and Foley won the class. The overall and Silver class wins went to the #71 X-Bow, with Wittmer and Gottsacker finishing second in class.
Sean Quinlan in the #119 Stephen Cameron Racing M4 GT4 was once again the lone BMW racer in the GT4 Sprint series. He placed fifth in the Am class in races one and two and sixth in class in race three. All three Am class wins went to Michael Dinan in an Aston Martin Vantage GT4.
In the first of three battles among the M240i Rs in Touring Car, James Clay got by pole sitter Johan Schwartz early in the first race; Toby Grahovec followed Clay, moving into second. The race finished under yellow with Clay in the #36 M240iR taking the win ahead of Grahovec and Schwartz. Clay won race two as well, with his teammate Chandler Hull second and Schwartz third, recovering after he had been set back by an early off-course excursion. A pileup occurred at the start of race three when Hull moved left to move up and made contact with another car. The incident brought out a red flag and took out Schwartz, Hull, and Bryson Lew; it was a rough weekend for Schwartz, who came into Road America as points leader in the class. After competition resumed, a race-long battle between Clay and Grahovec ensued. In the end, Grahovec in the #26 Classic BMW M240iR got the win, with Clay on his bumper as he crossed the finish line. The three Auto Technic M240iRs piloted by Austin Smith, Tom Capizzi, and Rob Slonaker followed Clay and Grahovec to the checkered flag.
Four JCW Minis ran in the TCA class; the best finisher among them was Tomas Mejia, who was third in races one and three and second in race two. Honda racer Kevin Boehm won the class in the first two races, while Tyler Gonzales won in the third race in a Hyundai Veloster.
SRO competition resumes at Circuit of the Americas on September 17–20.—Brian Morgan
[Photos Courtesy SRO Motorsports America.]