Recap of 1st GT3 Cup Race Weekend
Shortly after receiving the brand new 2014 Porsche 991 GT3 cup car, Pfaff Motorsports took to the track for the first race of the year on Victoria Day weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park. As the weather was forecasting 100% chances of rain, it did not let us down. We pulled the car off the Pfaff Motorsports trailer and hit the track for the first time in unofficial testing on the Thursday morning. As the car was new to our driver Chris Green and the freshly formed Pfaff Motorsports team, we were all excited to see what the car could really offer.
Completing some very positive testing in the rain on Thursday, the team was hoping for a dry track to be able to exploit the car to it’s maximum and understand it’s quirks and characteristics. With only one official practice session on the Friday before qualifying that same afternoon the Pfaff Motorsports team were forced to bolt on the set of Michelin rain tires as the session was declared wet. With about 10 minutes to go at the end of the practice session, the sun peaked through the clouds and allowed Chris and the team to try the car in drier conditions. Without ever having driven this car in the dry or having any past experience setting up the new machine the team was still able to put the car on top of the time charts in a last lap flier from team race driver Chris Green.
The day remained cool but the rain held off for the qualifying session to be run in the dry. Running a shorter session in qualifying in hopes of saving the tires for the first race, the team was able to qualify a mere 2/10ths off of pole to start race one in fourth place the following day.
Spirits were high and everyone was feeling confident showing up to the track on Saturday morning in preparation for the first race of the 2014 Ultra 94 GT3 Cup Challenge presented by Michelin season. As the green flag dropped, Green immediately jumped into second place while entering turn one of the track. In hot pursuit of the leader Green made the pass for the lead on lap 5 where he remained on top for a couple laps until a successful overtake entering turn 8 moved Green back to 2nd place. As the race progressed, Chris was in heavy pursuit of the leader and was in a position to regain the lead in the closing stages of the race. With an incident on track the race was then put under a full course yellow, preventing Green from being able to pass. With 2 laps to go in the race, the director gave the green flag to return racing, but we fell short of taking the lead for the overall race win. Crossing the line .8 seconds shy of the leader Pfaff Motorsports picked up their first podium of the season with a 2nd place finish.
Sunday’s race was scheduled just before lunch and the #9 Pfaff Motorsport/ Castrol/ BASF car was starting on pole thanks to us posting the fastest race lap the day before. When the green flag dropped for the second race, Green comfortably took the lead going into turn one. As the race progressed it was like a deja-vu as the race was playing out in a very similar form as on Saturday. The lead was relinquished again in turn 8 by a mirrored pass as was completed the day before. Feeling confident and Green minting his car and tires well, he was able to put himself in a position to attack for the lead but again another incident on track at the exit of turn 10 put the race under yellow flags which lasted over 20 minutes. When the track was given the go to return to racing Green again only had a couple laps to gain the lead and having now to hold off third place the opportunity to win disappeared as the checkered flag was waved and Green finishing again second place just over a second behind the eventual winner.
“I am very happy with the efforts of our newly formed Pfaff Motorsports team, everyone had a large task at hand this weekend and by running at the front of the pack and taking home two strong second place finishes and valuable points I think we are in a great position to challenge again in the next event for the race win. I would like to thank the crew for the countless hours of hard work and precision to put us on the podium twice this weekend. Nick, Joe, Jimmy, Steve, Moe are what this team is all about and I am fortunate to work with such a great group. I look forward to getting in the car again to gain more experience with the new Pfaff Porsche GT3 Cup car, but I can say that I am very comfortable and feel confident of our abilities this season” – Quoted team driver Chris Green on his thoughts of the weekend.
Overall the weekend was a great success for the entire Pfaff Motorsports team as the learning curve was steep and the challenges were high. The success is another proven example that Pfaff are driven for success and will use their experience and expertise no matter what challenges are thrown their way.
Preparing for rounds 3-4 at Calabogie Motorsports Park this upcoming weekend the Pfaff Motorsports team look to redeem themselves and maintain their 100% success rate at the track by gunning for two race wins on race day Sunday. Wish us luck!!”