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Monday
Jun272016

Magnus Racing “Swipes Right” on Dion von Moltke for Watkins Glen

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (June 27, 2016)- Per their video release (above), Magnus Racing is pleased to announce the addition of IMSA veteran Dion von Moltke for this weekend’s Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen. As the Official Sportscar Brand Ambassador for Audi of America, the 25-year old will replace the team’s regular endurance driver Marco Seefried, who was unavailable due to a schedule conflict.

Seefried instead decided to make a documentary film about it. See above.
 
“It’s great to have Dion on board,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and co-driver. “We’ve obviously known Dion for several years now, and he’s really earned himself a great reputation as a reliable, solid driver who doesn’t make mistakes. When we realized Marco wouldn’t be available he was the clear choice for us, and we know he’ll fit right in with us this weekend. Plus, he seemed to be the only who we matched with when we looking for drivers on-line. I think one of the greatest things about Dion is his extremely edgy personality, you just never know what horrific thing is going to come out of his mouth, and that’s when he’s sober! We look forward to his crude jokes and brash commentary.”
 
A South Carolina resident, von Moltke joins the team with a long history in the sport despite a fairly young age. Having driven for a variety of teams in the sport, Dion has accrued a number of accolades including victories at The Rolex 24 at Daytona and Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, all leading to his current role as the Official Sportscar Brand Ambassador for Audi of America.
 
For von Moltke, the opportunity to join Magnus is a welcome one.
 
“I’ve known a lot of the guys at Magnus for a long time now, so it’s great to finally be a part of the team,” stated von Moltke. “The team obviously has a reputation for fun, that’s why I ‘swiped right’ when I saw they were looking, but their success on the track speaks volumes for them. They seem to run really well at endurance races, and I know they really want to win at Watkins Glen, and hopefully I can do my part.”
 
Despite three consecutive podiums at the famed upstate New York circuit, Magnus Racing has never taken victory at the six-hour event. Currently leading the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Championship, the team is cautiously optimistic forSunday’s festivities.
 
Practice for the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen begins this Friday, July 1, with the race taking place on Sunday, July 3. Live coverage will be available via Fox Sports 1 at 10AM ET, or imsa.tv for international fans.


Monday
Jun062016

Magnus Racing Takes Top-10 in Detroit

DETROIT (June 6, 2016)- Returning to a track that has been notoriously challenging for the team, Magnus Racing would finish Saturday’s Chevrolet Sports Car Classic presented by Metro Detroit Chevy Dealers in a quiet 10th

“We knew this would be a challenging weekend for us,” stated team owner and co-driver John Potter. “For whatever reason the circuit at Belle Isle has just never been our track, and this weekend proved no different. I applaud everyone on the team for working hard throughout the weekend, we definitely put in the effort, and ultimately seeing the checkered flag in 10th was all we could ask for.”

As the lone temporary street circuit for the GTD category of IMSA’s WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, the bumpy and tight nature of the 2.36-mile course has notoriously proven difficult for the team. In 2014, the team was blighted with penalties which cost the team a possible podium, and in 2015 the team’s co-driver Andy Lally was caught in an unavoidable incident that put the team well behind.

For the 2016 race, John Potter would take starting duties in the No. 44 Audi Tire Center / Auric Solar Audi R8 LMS. Starting from the eighth row, Potter simply managed his time throughout his stint, making a solid pass early on and largely focused on preserving his car. Maintaining contact with the lead pack, an opportune yellow would present itself just past the 35-minute mark of the race, allowing the team to pit in favor of co-driver Andy Lally to take the car through the remainder of the 100-minute race.

Executing a flawless stop, all attention was now on Lally to work on the field in front of him. Showing strong pace, a combination of constant yellow flags and difficulty passing would undermine the pace of the Audi, with Andy doing his best to work on the field in front of him but struggling to gain ground.

As the laps wound down, Lally would be able to make one last gasp pass on the No. 94 Turner BMW of Markus Palttala on the final lap, slotting him in to 10th and gaining valuable points in the process.

“This was just one of those races you know you have to get through,” stated Lally. “Everyone on the team did their part, this just wasn’t a good weekend for us. Luckily we walked away with a car that is still in tact and we definitely learned a few things, so I think headed in to the rest of the season we’ll be in pretty good shape. 

With the event behind them, all focus now turns to an event where the team has done well at, the Sahlen’s Six Hours at the Glen in Watkins Glen, New York. As the third round of the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Championship, the team will take to the track on Friday, July 1, with the six-hour classic taking place that Sunday. The team will have more details on the event shortly.

 

 

Thursday
Jun022016

Magnus the Shark, Magnus Racing Re-Unite in Detroit

DETROIT (June 2, 2016)- Continuing a tradition that began during last year’s event, Magnus Racing will once again partner with SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium for this weekend’s Chevrolet Sports Car Classic presented by Metro Detroit Chevy Dealers. As the fourth round of the GTD category in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, the team is hoping that the return of “Magnus the Shark” to pit lane will help bring some good luck to the team’s championship efforts.

“We’ve heard a lot about sharks in the paddock over the years, but we figured we would bring the biggest one,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and co-driver John Potter. “Having Magnus the Shark in our paddock last year was a lot of fun, and as part of our commitment to celebrating every community we visit, we thought this was a good tradition to continue. The SEA LIFE aquarium is a really cool venue with a unique approach to guest experience, and it’s great to continue on with them for another year. We’ve enjoyed a strong start to our championship effort, but obviously the most recent round in Monterey was a bit of a challenge, hopefully this will bring the good luck we’re searching for.” 

Magnus the Shark is the signature mascot of Detroit’s SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium. Designed as an interactive experience, guests can walk through a highly themed aquarium that brings you nose to nose with sharks, stingrays, jellyfish, seahorses and over 5,000 underwater creatures. Located in nearby Auburn Hills, the experience opened in January of 2015, and operates seven days a week.
 
Magnus the Shark will join the team throughout Saturday’s pre-race festivities, including joining drivers Andy Lally and John Potter during the 10:15AM autograph session, as well as joining the team during the series’ signature gridwalk.

Heading in to the shortest race of the GTD season, the 100-minute event at the famed Belle Isle street circuit promises to be a thrilling one. Historically, Magnus Racing has struggled at the challenging venue, however with the team competing in the No. 44 Audi Tire Center / Auric Solar Audi R8 LMS for the first time at the circuit, optimism is high that their fortunes may turn in 2016.

As part of a shared weekend with the Verizon IndyCar series, practice begins this Friday, June 3, with the race taking place one day later at 12:40PM ET. Live race coverage can be found on Saturday, June 4 at 12:30 PM on Fox Sports 1.

 

 

 

 

Monday
May022016

Pre-Race Challenges Lead to 13th for Magnus Racing in Monterey

MONTEREY, Calif. (May 2, 2016)- With the real excitement of the weekend occurring before the race had even started, the team at Magnus Racing did a remarkable job to overcome a pre-race pit fire en route to a trouble-free 13th during yesterday’s Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Kicking off the “sprint season” of the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship’s GTD class, the team retains a solid third-place standing in the championship.

“This was definitely not the race we were hoping for, but it was an absolute testament to the quality of our crew,” stated team owner and co-driver John Potter. “We could have just as easily missed the event with the fire, but the team immediately went in to recovery mode to make sure we made the start, and as the season goes on these are the moments that will make a big difference. It’s a little disappointing to have a drive-through penalty from IMSA in addition to having to start from pit lane, we were already at a deficit by having to start the race from the back, and the drive-through penalty effectively killed all our chances to do well. We were still able to manage points, and given our strong start to the year we’re still very much in the thick of the competition. We would have loved to have shown more for all of our guests on-hand at Auric Solar, but obviously one of the things we all enjoy about this sport is its unpredictability, we were just on the wrong side of it this weekend.”

After a fairly smooth weekend throughout practice and qualifying for the No. 44 Audi Tire Center / Auric Solar Audi R8 LMS, Sunday’s pre-race warm-up, occurring less than two hours before the race start, would change the entire dynamic of the weekend. With driver Andy Lally setting a few final laps to gauge the car’s setup, chaos would ensue as he stopped in the pits for the last time before the race.

 

As the team re-fueled the car, a rare mechanical problem would result in a small amount of fuel leaking outside of the vehicle, catching on fire as it came in contact with a very hot machine. Thanks to quick work by the crew and track safety personnel, the fire would be put out almost immediately, with no one hurt and no major damage sustained. As the fire extinguishing systems engaged, however, the team would have to take the car back to the paddock to clear it of the powder located all over the vehicle, as well as a thorough mechanical review to make sure there were no other unforeseen damages.

For the next 70 minutes, the team would frantically go through the car, replacing components that appeared effected, as well as vacuuming and cleaning the high amount of foam and powder from the extinguishing. Luckily for all involved, the car would turn on with seemingly no issues, allowing the team to roll back to pit lane in time for the start.

Unfortunately, in the process the team would miss the mandatory reconnaissance lap to take their place on the grid, meaning the team’s opening driver, John Potter, would have to start from pit lane. This would present three challenges. The first would be that Potter had to start from the back and not even begin to join the track until the field came by at full speed. The second challenge would be joining the track with a car that had not been warmed up, putting him at a further disadvantage to the field in front of him that had just run two pace laps. Third, the team would be forced to serve a mandatory drive-through penalty after the opening lap, forcing Potter to crawl through pit-lane at a reduced speed as the field continued to pull away.

As a result of the various penalties placed on the team, by time John was up to speed he was nearly a lap down, with a hard charging GTD field quickly gaining on him. As he got up to speed, the pace of Potter and the Magnus Audi was on par with the majority of the field, setting consistent lap times and running without incident. Understanding that the focus now had to be on simply managing the rest of their race, John drove a relatively calm first stint, holding his own until a timely yellow was able to put the team in a strategic position to rejoin on the lead lap and hand the car over to teammate Andy Lally.

With Lally in the car, all focus turned to salvaging every position he could for the race’s final hour. With no additional yellow flags, however, the Atlanta resident had no real chance to catch the field in front of him. Despite this, Andy would still find himself in a couple of great battles outside the top-10, eventually finding himself in 13th for the finish.

“The pit fire really hurt us for the race, and unfortunately the penalties were sort of the final blow,” stated Lally. “It was an amazing job by the guys, again, to get us out there, and that definitely helps us for the championship. It was just one of those weekends, we’ll just have to turn our attention to the rest of the season.”

While it was the worst finish of the year for the team, the fact that they were still able to complete a full race distance would still mean solid points, allowing them to hold on to third in the championship.

With just under five weeks until the next event, all focus will now turn to the final street circuit of the season, the famed Detroit Grand Prix in scenic Belle Isle, with practice beginning on Friday, June 4. The race will take place one day later at 12:40PM ET.

 

Wednesday
Apr272016

Magnus Racing Heads to Monterey with Increased (Solar) Power

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (April 27, 2016)- Increasing a partnership that began at this year’s Rolex 24 at Daytona, Magnus Racing is pleased to announce that Utah-based solar energy specialists Auric Solar will be featured prominently during this weekend’s Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Heading in to the third round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s GTD category, the weekend marks a critical beginning of the “sprint season” for the championship-leading team.

“The pressure is definitely on to deliver this weekend,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and co-driver John Potter. “We’ve had such a strong start to the season that, headed in to the ‘sprint’ season, there is a major emphasis on maintaining our momentum. The shorter races require a completely different approach, but everyone here has maintained a great focus on development during the off-weeks, and we’re ready to get back on track. Having a larger presence for Auric Solar this weekend is a great opportunity to showcase what they’re all about. It’s a growing company that provides excellent solutions for solar energy, and we’re happy to a part of their marketing development.”

Following a win at the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona, followed by a third-place at the most recent Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, the No. 44 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS heads in to this weekend’s west coast round with a strong wave of momentum. Historically, the rolling hills of the 2.2-mile, 11-turn circuit of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca has proven strong for the team. From 2012-2014, the team scored a podium finish in every appearance, including a thrilling victory during the 2013 round. While the 2016 GTD category is fundamentally different than previous years, including the team’s switch to Audi machinery, optimism remains high for the group.

Beginning as a small company in 2010 that started out of a garage in South Jordan, Utah, Auric Solar has quickly become the largest solar providers in the area and one of the fastest growing in the U.S. Auric Solar has had an average year over year growth trend of 171%.  This was accomplished by focusing on customer experience, quality, timeliness, and providing a responsible way to switch to solar power. Auric Solar’s headquarters are in Salt Lake City Utah, and the company has expanded to service all of Utah and Idaho with over 150 employees. With eight guests on hand from Auric Solar to enjoy the experience, the utilization of Magnus Racing’s renowned hospitality and experiential entertainment will once again be put to task.

Practice for the Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix powered by Mazda begins this Friday, April 29. Running under a unique format to accommodate pit capacity, the series will actually split their four classes in to two separate events, with the Magnus Racing’s GTD category race taking place on Sunday, May 1, at 3:45PM PT. Live coverage can be found on Fox Sports 2.