Pumpelly Sixth on the Streets of Detroit

 

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DETROIT, Mich. (June 6, 2016) – Spencer Pumpelly and Change Racing switched up their driver rotation at the Chevrolet Sports Car Classic on Detroit’s Belle Isle and came away with a sixth-place finish in the latest WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race.
 
For the 100-minute race on the 2.3-mile, 14-turn temporary street circuit, Change Racing knew that track position would be key. In hopes of gaining an advantage, the team opted to have Pumpelly start the race and co-driver Corey Lewis finish.
 
“In past races, we’ve observed that it’s really hard to pass,” Pumpelly explained. “Now that we’re running GT3 cars that have a lot of downforce, it’s almost impossible. When you get near another car, you get into an aero cushion, where the lead car’s diffuser blows air up, which takes air off your nose. We figured track position would be everything, so we elected to qualify with me, assuming that the silver drivers would start the other GTD cars.”


 
Pumpelly qualified the car fourth. By the time he brought the No. 16 Pertamina/Monster Energy Lamborghini Huracán GT3 onto pit lane, he was up to third, but between a long fuel fill and short full-course caution, the new strategy was not reaching its full potential.
 
“We had a great pit stop,” Pumpelly recalled. “We came back out looking pretty good, but then, when everyone else cycled through, we had fallen back to sixth from third. We’ll take a look at things and see if we can make our pit stop quicker, but a lot of the other teams didn’t have to wait on fuel as long as we did.”
 
While the No. 16 got to pit lane before a full-course yellow that fell in the minimum drive time window, the yellow that did follow was a quick yellow and the pits did not open, nulling the advantage Change Racing was hoping to achieve by pitting early.
 
Co-driver Lewis brought the Lamborghini home in sixth place, a finish Pumpelly wishes was more representative of the effort from the team.
 
“It was a good weekend,” Pumpelly said. “Corey did an awesome job. The car was good and we had a strong pit stop. It’s just a little frustrating that even with our guys on top of their game, we’re still waiting longer in the pits for fuel than anyone else. We’ll see what we can work out before Watkins Glen.”
 
Pumpelly and Change Racing head to the Six Hours of the Glen in Watkins Glen, New York, July 1 – 3. There, Pumpelly will also rejoin Rennsport One for the next round of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge.  

 

Change Racing photos by Austin Gager