The Michelin Pilot Challenge series held the penultimate round of their 2023 season at the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a four-hour race that ended in darkness. There were two M4 GT4 entries in the top five, with the Random Vandals Racing team getting a podium finish.
There were seven M4 GT4 entries in the GS class at Indy, with the newest being the #39 car that was entered by the Carbahn by Peregrine Racing team that’s owned by Steve Dinan. Dinan, of course, is a legendary BMW tuner and has been racing in IMSA over the last few years with Audi, Porsche and even Lamborghini. The #39 BMW was entered for Indy but will also compete in the finale at Road Atlanta in preparation for a full season campaign in 2024.
The BMWs were not all that quick in qualifying at Indy, with Cameron Lawrence setting the fastest time among the BMW entries that was only good enough for tenth and was two seconds off the pole time of the #69 McLaren Artura. The BMWs performed better in the race than in qualifying, but they weren’t fast enough to threaten the two Mercedes-AMG entries that ended up finishing one-two. The best finisher among the BMWs was the #92 Random Vandals Racing entry of Kenton Koch and Paul Sparta, who made it onto the podium in third.
Turner Motorsport drivers Robby Foley and Vin Barletta came into Indy tied in the drivers’ championship with Murillo Racing drivers Kenny Murillo and Christian Szymczak and took the lead in the championship after Indy with a fifth-place finish in the #96 Turner Motorsport M4 GT4, while Murillo and Szymczak finished in thirteenth. The #71 Rebel Rock Racing Chevy Camaro GT4.R finished in fourth, which put drivers Robin Liddell and Frank DePew into second place behind Foley and Barletta. The #39 Carbahn with Peregrine Racing car had a decent debut, finishing in the top ten in ninth.
The championship will be decided at the season finale at Road Atlanta on October 13th. —David Haueter
[Photos courtesy LAT Images]