THIRD WEEKEND SWEEP OF YEAR IN OHIO FOR ALEC UDELL
For the third time in 2016, Global Motorsports Group’s Alec Udell took yet another step toward his Pirelli World Challenge GT-Cup category championship ambitions by taking double victories at the historic Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course this past weekend. After a hard fought series of races with title-rival Sloan Urry, the 20-year old has extended his championship lead heading in to the final three weekends of the year.
“This was an incredible weekend for everyone,” stated Udell. “We can’t take anything for granted in this series, and we knew walking away with two victories would be critical for our championship. This wasn’t an easy weekend by any means, as Sloan was with us the whole time and we had to stay focused to keep our lead, but luckily everything worked out. A lot can happen in four races so we certainly can’t get comfortable with our championship position, but this is a great spot to be in headed to the final rounds of the year. The car was perfect for the weekend, and despite limited practice time we had everything we needed to make it all work, which is a perfect testament to the guys. Thanks to James, Neville, and everyone at GMG for putting us in that position, I’m looking forward to the rest of the season.”
After the lone official practice was rained out on Friday, Alec and the crew behind the No. 17 Euroworld Motorsports / Panther Pipeline / Amsource Capital Porsche 911 GT3 Cup proved their years of experience once Saturday’s qualifying arrived, taking pole position for Race One and well positioned for the first of two races.
Taking the green flag during Saturday’s Race One, the Clemson University Engineering Student returned to “business as usual” by taking the lead from the outset, allowing the 20-year old to set the pace for the 50-minute race. Enduring a long series of early yellow flags, as the race returned to green flag racing, early contact between Udell and Urry would result in a damaged right-front wheel, hampering Alec’s ultimate speed for the remainder of the race. A minor mistake with 20 minutes to go would allow Urry one brief opportunity to try and pass, however strong maneuvering by Udell would keep him at bay, where he would stay until the checkered flag. While Alec would take the victory, the damage to his car meant his fastest lap would be eclipsed by Urry, which would set the stage for the next day’s race.
For Sunday’s Race Two, Alec would actually start in second alongside Sloan Urry as a result of Race One’s fastest lap times, with the two immediately jetting off once the green flag fell. Continuing their battle from the previous day’s race, the duo matched each other lap-for-lap, until a small opportunity heading in to the tricky Turn Four would allow Alec an opportunity to pass, which he promptly capitalized on to regain the lead. From that point on, Udell would never look back, taking his fifth consecutive victory and ninth of the season.
For GMG team owner James Sofronas, another incredible weekend highlights the exceptional teamwork of his organization.
“I couldn’t be happier with everyone on this team,” stated Sofronas. “We know how important this championship is for Alec and the Udell family, and of course our team as well. The guys take every detail incredibly serious, and on a weekend like Mid-Ohio where the lone practice session was cancelled, those details and archival information are critical. Most importantly, Alec was exceptional, like always. With the pressure he’s under, he’s kept incredibly calm and patient at every event, and his cool was obvious at Mid-Ohio. He was able to abate his challengers when he was in front, and mount a challenge from behind when the opportunity came, and that’s the kind of effort it takes to win a championship. We couldn’t be happier with his performance, and look forward to to the next round in Utah.”