For this year’s Pirelli GT4 series race at the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, the Marco Polo Motorsports/KTM X-Bow team will have a unique advantage: Paul Tracy as driver coach.
Tracy, the 2003 IndyCar Champion and four-time AGPLB winner, will spend part of his weekend away from the NBC Sports booth coaching MPM’s young Nicolai Elghanayan on the intricacies of the Long Beach course.
“We welcome the opportunity to have one of the best racers to have driven these streets of Long Beach play a critical role with our team,” said John Mueller of Muellerized Inc., MPM’s chief engineer and race strategist. “The pairing of Nicolai’s speed with Paul’s racecraft, setup knowledge and winning record at this track gives our team the edge we have been seeking for our hometown race.
“We are thrilled at the prospect of working with Paul, and appreciate his willingness to help our team excel this weekend!”
Elghanayan was equally enthusiastic: “I am looking forward to working with Paul. It’s the edge I need – Paul’s insight on this course will help boost my confidence. I want to perform well in front of my home crowd, and I couldn’t have asked for a better tutor than THE Paul Tracy.”
After crashing in the St. Petersburg season opener, Elghanayan was forced to finish the weekend with the team’s 2017 KTM X-Bow which has since been updated to the latest Evo 2018 spec for Long Beach. The team is expecting delivery of a brand new chassis for the next round at Virginia International Raceway.
Elghanayan is a two-time Lotus Cup USA champion, an SCCA runoffs podium finisher, runner-up at last year’s KTM x-bow battle at Misano (Italy), and four-time podium finisher in the 2018 Pirelli World Challenge, winning the Lime Rock event overall from pole position as an amateur driver.