Vesko Kozarov (SprintX West Am) in the No. 91 Rearden Racing Audi R8 LMS GT4 jumped into the lead in the first of two 60-minute GT4 America SprintX races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, with Colin Mullan (SprintX Pro-Am No. 36 Andretti Autosport McLaren 570S GT4) and James Sofronas (SprintX Am No. 2 GMG Racing Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR) giving chase in second and third.
At one-quarter distance, Jon Miller (SprintX West Pro-Am No. 28 ST Racing BMW M4 GT4) worked past Matt Travis (SprintX Pro-Am No. 46 NOLASPORT Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR) for fourth, with Matt Keegan (SprintX Am No. 51 Panoz Avezzano GT4) attacking Travis for fifth.
After the mandatory pit stops for driver changes were complete with 25 minutes remaining, Jarrett Andretti (SprintX Pro-Am) would nip Jeff Burton (SprintX West Am) in the No. 91 Rearden Racing Audi for the lead, with Jason Hart (SprintX Pro-Am) in the No. 47 NOLASPORT Porsche up to third overall.
Andretti charged on to win by over four seconds over Hart, as Burton slipped back to fifth at the finish.
“My whole family is back home so it’s great to take the win for them. Colin (Mullan) put in a perfect first stint and handed me a great car; the team executed perfectly during the pit stop; and that was that. A really great race all around,” Andretti exclaimed.
“It has been a very good weekend so far! This is a brand new car for the team and on the long runs, the car is really good. We’re very happy with the win. I look forward to (tomorrow’s) Race 2!” said young co-driver Mullan.
Soon after the round of pit stops, Hart passed Burton for second entering Turn 3. Minutes later, Harry Gottsacker (SprintX West Pro-Am No. 28 ST Racing BMW M4 GT4), Trent Hindman (SprintX West Pro-Am No. 77 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 718 Caymans CS MR), and Guy Cosmo (SprintX Pro-Am No. 89 RENNtech Motorsports Mercedes AMG GT4) all would get past Burton as the Audi driver slid wide in Turn 12.
Eventually Hindman powered past Gottsacker into third overall where he would finish, claiming the SprintX West Pro-Am victory. Cosmo, too, passed Gottsacker into fourth overall, third in the SprintX Pro-Am class. Gottsacker would later face a time penalty and be demoted to ninth overall, second in the SprintX West Pro-Am class.
Struggling with tire wear, Burton nursed the No. 91 Audi home in fifth overall, taking the SprintX West Am win and unofficially claiming the championship. Gregory Leifooghe (SprintX Pro-Am) brought the No. 19 Stephen Cameron Racing BMW M4 GT4 home sixth overall, fourth in class.
Preston Calvert was seventh overall, first in the SprintX Am class, in the No. 51 Panoz, with Anthony Lazzaro (No. 64 Rearden Racing Mercedes AMG GT4) finishing eighth overall, second in the SprintX Am class.
Jason Bell and the No. 2 GMG Racing Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR would round out the top 10, finishing just behind the penalized Gottsacker.
Pirelli GT4 America SprintX Race 2 goes green on Sunday, Oct. 20, at 1:10 p.m. PDT, streaming live at https://www.gt4-america.com/watch-live.
The series closes out its 2019 season in Las Vegas, the weekend sponsored by R.U.N – the First Live Action Thriller produced by Cirque du Soleil.