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Antinucci and Lewis Win for Second Time, Junqueira and Baker win in first race; 16-year-old Aghakhani wins Am Class while Johnson wins third consecutive LB Cup race
Release Date: 29 June 2019
Watkins Glen, NY (June 28, 2019) – Round 3 of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America championship produced another exciting race that seems to happen whenever the championship visits Watkins Glen International.
A total of 19 Huracan EVOs were on the grid on a hot, steamy day in western New York and the field was looking to get back to racing after an almost three-month span after the first two rounds of the season.
At the end of the 50-minute battle, the No. 29 entry from Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte was the overall, and Pro Class, winner for the second consecutive race.
Pole sitter Richy Antinucci held his position through the first part of the race after being challenged in the first few turns by the field behind him. He held that lead until pitting with just under 23 minutes remaining and turning the car over to co-driver Corey Lewis. After the cars all cycled through their pit stops Lewis was still in the lead.
The No. 34, with D. Bryce Miller behind the wheel, spun in the Esses with 12 minutes remaining and the first full course yellow of the race was brought out which promised to make the end of the race a close one.
There were five minutes remaining when the field was shown the green flag which translated to about three laps remaining. As the cars crossed the line, Lewis left the rest of the field in his rear view mirror opening almost a three second lead for the remainder of the race as he drove to victory.
Andrea Amici and Sandy Mitchell in the No. 1 Prestige Performance/Wayne Taylor Racing, Lamborghini Paramus entry finished second in class. The No. 46 from Precision Performance Motorsports, Lamborghini Palm Beach with Conor Daly and Brandon Gdovic was third.
The Pro-Am Class had its own drama throughout the 50 minutes as just after the start,
Jake Eidson (No. 09 US RaceTronics, Lamborghini Vancouver) suffered a drive-through penalty for jump-starting the race which knocked him out of the class lead.
That gave the lead to Ryan Hardwick in the No. 22 Dream Racing Motorsport, Lamborghini Atlanta and he held the lead until the pit stops were over.
After the stops, Damon Ockey re-gained the lead in the No. 09 from Supercross star Chad Reed who was making his first-ever start in Super Trofeo. Ockey held that lead for most of the second half of the race until the restart with five minutes remaining.
After that Bruno Junqueira in the No. 53 Prestige Performance Motorsport/Wayne Taylor Racing, Lamborghini Paramus assumed the lead and went on to win with his teammate Bradley Baker in their first race of the season.
Ockey and Eidson finished second place while Hardwick and Reed were third in class.
The Am Class featured a classic battle between two of the youngest drivers in the field in 21-year-old McKay Snow (No. 63 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte) and 16-year-old Steven Aghakhani in the No. 6 US RaceTronics, Lamborghini Beverly Hills.
Snow, who won the first two rounds, jumped out to an early class lead with Aghakhani right behind through the first part of the race. Following the pit stops Aghakhani grabbed the lead and held a second and a half lead until the restart.
Snow regained the lead on the restart but Aghakhani quickly slipped back by him on that first lap and opened a slim half a second lead and held on for the class win in his first-ever Super Trofeo start.
Ashton Harrison was fastest in both qualifying sessions and her speed showed as she took the lead in LB Cup to start the race. When she passed the car along to her teammate Stephanie Cemo after the mandatory stop, the result was same as they were in the lead and remained in that position until there were about two minutes left in the race.
Mel Johnson in the No. 08 GMG Racing, Lamborghini Newport Beach, who won the first two rounds, moved around the No. 43 and took the class lead away from them after they held it for almost 48 minutes. The victory made him three-for-three this year.
What They Said
Richy Antinucci (No. 29 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte)
“It was a great race. I felt like we had a little gap and I tried to manage that and I wanted to give as much tire as possible to Corey because it was hot and we didn’t know if we would have a yellow. On the restart you saw what he could do. It was amazing.”
Corey Lewis (No. 29 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte)
“That last restart was probably a little more than what I wanted. We managed our tires and with the restart we knew we had enough tires to defend our lead. We timed that restart perfectly. Hats off to Richy, Change Racing and Lamborghini Charlotte and everybody involved. We have one more to go tomorrow and we will see how that plays out.”
Bruno Junqueira (No. 53 Prestige Performance/Wayne Taylor Racing, Lamborghini Paramus)
“It is nice to be back in IMSA and it’s my first time in Super Trofeo. This car is great to drive. I love to drive the Lamborghini. Brad gave me the car in good position and I am excited for us to win our first race.”
Bradley Baker (No. 53 Prestige Performance/Wayne Taylor Racing, Lamborghini Paramus)
“Bruno did a great job. It is fun to race with him and I am very lucky to be his teammate.”
Steven Aghakhani (No. 6 US RaceTronics, Lamborghini Beverly Hills)
“It feels awesome to win and the team was amazing. We were giving it our best after the engineers gave us a great car. I am always happy finish on the podium but am extremely happy to finish in first place. I’m ready to come back and do it again tomorrow. After the restart I got caught behind some of the LB Cup cars and I wanted to play it safe. I wanted to keep the car safe and come away with a clean race.”
Mel Johnson (No. 8 GMG Racing, Lamborghini Newport Beach)
“It was a tough one today. I was a little bit behind there but the safety car came out and I had a pretty good restart to get the win a couple of laps to go. The 43 seemed to be in a lot of traffic at the end and I was able to get around them and sneak through. Now it is time to try and get four in a row.”