Michael Cooper’s No. 10 Blackdog Speed Shop McLaren 570S GT4 got the jump on the Pirelli GT4 America Sprint field at the start, and was never headed in Saturday’s Race 2 at Sonoma Raceway, leading every lap.
Behind, Drew Staveley (No. 12 G3 Ian Lacy Racing Ford Mustang GT4) got the jump on Spencer Pumpelly (No. 66 TRG LaSalle Solutions Porsche 718 Cayman GT4) for second and the start, and those two positions remained unchanged to the finish as well.
Paul Terry’s No. 59 Rearden Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT4 paced the Am contenders with Race 1 winner Michael Dinan (No. 210 Flying Lizard Motorsports Aston Martin Vantage GT4) in pursuit. Terry would stretch his class lead to 1.5 seconds over Dinan as Terry’s teammate Jeff Burton (No. 191 Rearden Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT4) and Mark Klenin (No. 62 KPR SIN R1 GT4) battled for third.
As the clock clicked past 15 minutes, Cooper’s lead was just under 1 second over Staveley, with Pumpelly just half a second behind the Mustang driver.
Terry, meanwhile, had stretched his Am-class lead to 3s over Dinan with Burton a further 3s back in third.
Cooper’s win was his fourth of the season and his third straight. Along the way, he notched the race fastest lap of 1m46.706s, giving him the pole for Sunday’s Race 3.
“It was really tough today,” said a jubilant Cooper. “I think we had the third fastest car, honestly, but luckily we started on pole so the two behind me had the dirty air. The car really didn’t have anything left in it — I was pusing 100 percent the entire race! — but the guys got the setup right, so thanks to everyone at Blackdog Speed Shop and McLaren.”
Terry won the Am division race comfortably with Dinan coming home second and Burton third. Mark Klenin, though, had the fastest Am lap, giving him the class pole for tomorrow’s weekend finale.
“Michael is a hell of a driver, so it was a lot of fun to race clean and race hard; it was excellent from both of us. It was a great race from start to finish and Rearden Racing gave me a great car,” said Terry.
Pirelli GT4 America Sprint Race 3, the St. Petersburg make-up event, will go green on Sunday, August 9, at 3:15 p.m. PDT, streaming live at www.gt4-america.com/live.
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