Grand Am – Miami Grand Prix - Quick Race Report
Two In A Row For SunTrust Racing

Not quite as significant as ‘96 when the combination of Bill Riley and Wayne Taylor also won the first two races of the season, but still very impressive.

Ignore the first hour of the race that was filled with silly accidents and several cautions: the final run made it worthwhile as Butch Leitzinger furiously chased Max Angelelli to the checkered flag. The race started in earnest at about the one hour mark and for those who kept their noses clean, it paid off. The crème rose to the top as Angelelli led a group including Leitzinger, Pruett, Bergmeister, and Jonsson to the front of the pack. Christian Fittipaldi led much of the early going and Terry Borcheller kept the #54 in touch but they were unable to keep ultimate pace with the lead group.

In the end Butch Leitzinger was able to stay with Max Angelelli, but could never get quite close enough to make a move. Kevin Buckler showed that he knows how to run more than just Porsches: both of his Krohn Racing/TRG Rileys finished - third & fourth overall, still on the lead lap.

The GT lead swapped hands several times between different Porsches. Ultimately it fell into the hands of Andy Lally in the #65 TRG car, after a nice opening stint by Marc Bunting kept their car in the hunt. The Peter Baron-led, pole sitting, TRG East Porsche led briefly but had plumbing problems and couldn’t keep pace. The TPC GT3 of Levitas and Pobst also spent time in the lead and finally placed second. The PTG BMWs were never really a factor, the Hand / Auberlen car finishing highest of the M3s, in seventh.

Full report from Russell Wittenberg in due course.

 

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