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Tuesday
Aug092016

Magnus Racing Impresses with Fourth at Road America

ELKHART LAKE, Wisconsin (August 8, 2016)- Enduring a day that featured everything from starting at the back, to challenging restarts, to untimely caution periods, Magnus Racing demonstrated strong pace throughout Sunday’s Continental Tire Road Race Showcase to take top Audi honors en route to a fourth-place finish. Closing the day one position behind the championship-leading No. 63 Ferrari, the driving duo of John Potter and Andy Lally maintain second-place in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTD-category standings.

“It’s actually a little bittersweet walking away with a fourth,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and co-driver John Potter. “With the high speeds of Road America, our position was actually something we would have been happy with coming in to the weekend, but knowing just how fast we were and giving up another position to the 63 is a tough one. Ultimately we showed a lot of strengths, from having a strong car to great pit stops, however with three races to go we know we have a lot to focus on for the championship. Regardless, we were able to put on another great show for all of our guests at U.S. Bank, and we’ll be that much more focused headed in to VIR.”

Having to start from the back due to a pre-race tire change, John Potter would take starting duties in the No. 44 Audi Tire Center Audi R8 LMS. With over 15 guests on hand from The Private Client Reserve of U.S. Bank, the fourth consecutive year of working in partnership, pressure was high for the entire team to perform.

Wasting no time to climb up the field, Potter would make an excellent start from the back, already making a pass by time the field made the first turn, and slowly working on the field in front of him throughout his stint. Combining an aggressive run with his trademark patience, the Salt Lake City resident would drive an excellent stint, ultimately gaining six spots and rising to eighth by time he would close out his 50-minute run.

With the team making a great stop to put teammate Andy Lally in for the the final two stints, all focus was on gaining ground to maximize positions for the remaining one-hour and fifty minutes. Immediately recognizing the pace of his Audi, Lally was on a strong climb toward the field in front of him, advancing to seventh by time all pit stops would cycle through, and setting some of the fastest laps in the category. Running a pace reminiscent of the previous race at Lime Rock, Andy would pick positions one-by-one, climbing to sixth by time the race reached halfway, and showing the strength of a top-five car as the team focused on the end.

With the team performing a flawless final stop, the pace of the No. 44 proved remarkable, with Andy advancing to fourth in the final 30 minutes with all attention on getting ahead of their championship-rival in third.

Knowing tire wear would work to the team’s benefit, a late-race yellow would actually prove detrimental to the team, with the field slowing down and allowing everyone to pack up. As the race resumed with just a few minutes remaining, an out-of-fuel BMW would end up thwarting Lally’s efforts to move up, effectively wedging an insurmountable gap to the field in front of him, leaving the New York native no choice but to settle in to fourth place until the checkered flag. 

While a strong run for the team, it was a frustrating way to end the event for the renowned driver.

“This was a tough one,” stated Lally. “I couldn’t be happier with the team and the car they gave me, we had an excellent shot at a track that we were unsure of. From the first lap of the season I’m always thinking about the championship and getting every point we can, so to see a couple points slip away like that is a tough one, but we were able to prove how strong we can be and headed to Virginia we will be ready.”

One of the more scenic tracks on the IMSA circuit, Magnus Racing and the entire IMSA GT field will take a two-week break before heading to the beautiful VIRginia International Raceway, taking part in the sole GT-only race on the calendar. Practice begins on Friday, August August 26, with the race taking place on August 28.

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