Drama was served cold and often in race two at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as the Pirelli GT4 America field took to the track for its final race of the 2022 season. While the Silver championship was decided for RS1 on Friday, and Am was claimed by BimmerWorld at Sebring, the Pro-Am championship was still brutally close between Nolasport and Premier Racing. However, after a two-driver sprint race-turned-war of attrition—mainly caused by repeated drama in Turn 1—it was Nolasport who survived flying BMWs, Aston Martins, Porsche, and Toyotas and made it across the finish line—Premier Racing wasn’t so lucky.
After massive drama in Turn 1, lap one, Eric Filgueiras (No. 18 RS1 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS Clubsport) jumped ahead with season-long rival Gavin Sanders (No. 34 Conquest Racing/JMF Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT4) not too far behind. It would only be a short matter of time before the two were in a fantastic scrap.
After the driver change, Stevan McAleer took over for Filgueiras and never looked back. His spot was lightly contended by Michai Stephens (No. 34 Conquest Racing/JMF Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT4) in the end, but otherwise he had a pretty clean run to the checkers.
Further down the running order, Ryan Dexter (No. 112 Dexter Racing Toyota GR Supra GT4) was handed a drive-through penalty for contact made with No. 50 Chouest Povoledo Racing Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4 (Ross Chouest/Aaron Povoledo) taking him out of fifth in class and clearing the way for Kevin Conway (No. 68 Smooge Racing Toyota GR Supra GT4) and Matt Forbush (No. 33 Forbush Performance Toyota GR Supra GT4) mixed in with some Am traffic.
Across the line it was McAleer, Stephens, and Conway. RS1 earned the CrowdStrike Fastest Lap by setting a 1m31.295s.
“This is a massive deal for us,” McAleer said. “The chemistry between Eric and I from the get-go—we had a great opening round at Sonoma and never looked back. I think every team has some rocky races, which we did, but credit to the RS1 team and thanks for the opportunity.”
Elias Sabo (No. 8 Flying Lizard Motorsports Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4) and Elliot Skeer (No. 120 Premier Racing Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS Clubsport) made contact in Turn 1, lap one, resulting in the Premier car taking on damage and being put out of the race, thus ending their championship bid. Premier Racing can reflect on a strong year that included three wins including a sweep at NOLA.
The opening move of the race, weaving through the spinning cars at Turn 1 was from the No. 52 Auto Technic Racing BMW of John Capestro-Dubets (#52 Auto Technic Racing BMW M4 GT4) who picked up over a dozen positions.
After the driver change, Tom Capizzi, taking over for Capestro-Dubets, held off James Walker Jr. (No. 82 BimmerWorld BMW M4 GT4) for first in class, but had to reel it in for a yellow flag brought on by contact between Nick Shanny (No. 20 Carrus Callas Raceteam Toyota GR Supra GT4) and Gray Newell (No. 24 Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4).
After the restart, drama in Turn 1 saw the No. 82 BMW of Walker Jr. punted off, opening the door for Ross Chouest (No. 50 Chouest Povoledo Racing Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4) and Toby Grahovic (No. 10 Fast Track Racing BMW M4 GT4) who took over from Tim Horrell. Chouest and Grahovic made it to first and second, which stuck across the line. This was the second win of the day for Chouest who had already won in the GT America race. This was also the first career podium for Horrell, who races with hand controls developed by the Fast Track Racing team.
“I can’t think of a better place to have such a great weekend—three wins and seal the championship in GT America,” Chouest said. “As a kid we used to come to the 500 every year. I literally can’t think of a better place to win this.”
With Premier knocked out, the No. 47 Nolasport Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS Clubsport (Scott Noble/Jason Hart) cruised to a fifth place finish becoming the 2022 Pirelli GT4 America Pro-Am champions.
While the battle was on in Pro-Am and Silver, there was still the rest of the championship podium to fill out in Am.
With BimmerWorld already locked in the Am championship with Nolaport driver Alain Stad in second, third place was still up for grabs between RS1, Carrus Callas, and Auto Technic.
In the final moments of the race, mixed in with both Silver and Pro-Am runners, Alex Filsinger (No. 53 Auto Technic Racing BMW M4 GT4) made a sturdy move on Charlie Postins (No. 36 BimmerWorld BMW M4 GT4), grabbing the lead. Ramana Lagemann (No. 38 STR38 Motorsports BMW M4 GT4) wasn’t far behind.
Two corners later it was Filsinger across the line first, followed by Postins and Lagemann.
“I just did everything I could,” Filsinger said. “I went as deep as I could possibly go, gave as much as I could and got lucky. Charlie made a mistake at the last second that gave me a hole so I ran with it.”