Alton, VIRGINIA – September 29, 2020 – Two AVD Motorsports clients made it to the top step of the podium at Virginia International Raceway, September 26 and 27, when Rounds 5 and 6 of the 2020 Trans Am presented by Pirelli Championship season were staged on consecutive days at the famous Southern circuit. Over the course of the weekend, AVD Motorsports drivers scored two wins, two runner-up spots, plus P4, P5 and P7 finishing positions across four different classes making it a terrific couple of days all round.
Sunday’s race saw an all class, 42 car spectacular for the Heacock Gold Cup and the first win in the Super GT class for New Yorker Adrian Wlostowski. Adrian had already notched an impressive sequence of high place finishes this season which have seen the Big Apple rookie cement second place in the Drivers Championship table. Sunday’s first win for the No. 96 F.A.S.T. Auto Racing Ford Mustang was richly deserved and Adrian was understandably thrilled when he spoke to our reporter after the race, “We came with a plan today to win and we did not give an inch. We led the entire race almost and we’re super happy. We’re so excited.”
Adrian was his usual generous self as he went on to thank the crew that got him to the top step in just the sixth race of the year, “I want to thank Hawk Performance and Forgeline Wheels and everyone on my team. Steve at Penske Shocks, Eric, Karol, Patrick, Chris and everyone in the shop who helped us out to get where we are, thank you!” Adrian finished runner up in Saturday’s race so the hunt for the SGT Championship is definitely on.
Ken Thwaits was another winner for AVD Motorsports on Saturday when running away with the Xtreme GT race. The No. 5 Franklin Road Apparel Audi R8 LMS Ultra piloted by Ken set a new track record in class of 1:52:858 in Saturday’s race. Ken praised the Audi, which is famed for its tremendous durability and reliability when he spoke to us after the race, “This car doesn’t break. Unless you do something to it, it will finish every session and that’s a strong point. It’s the most reliable car and so far that’s paying dividends for us.” Ken was runner up in the XGT Class in Sunday’s race and remains on course to become the inaugural XGT Drivers Champion.
Simon Gregg went into the weekend in P3 in the Trans Am TA Class Drivers Championship. In eventful races that presented plenty of challenges, P5 and P4 finishes in the No. 59 Derhaag Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro in the double-header races kept the experienced Floridian in the hunt for a top three finish in the series with five races remaining.
A broken driveshaft meant an early finish for Tom Sheehan in the No. 97 Insulation Technologies Ford Mustang in Saturday’s race but he and the Damon Racing team did extraordinarily well to get the car back on track for Sunday’s race where the Bow, New Hampshire based driver finished in P7 in the TA2 Class.
“It was a melee out there. It was full contact racing pretty much from the get go. Our car got hit in Turn 3 of the first lap, but we had a pretty good car and it was racy on the restarts. There was a lot of contact and they can take a look at all that stuff but it is what it is and it was fun, we had a good time.” On the unique format of Sunday’s race Sheehan added, “The full class racing is always pretty exciting out there.”
TA fans will be treated to two more all class races before the season ends as TA supremo John Clagett explained to our reporter at the weekend, “Teams can look forward to Road Atlanta being very similar to VIR, with separate TA and TA2 races on Saturday and then a combined race on Sunday. It’s not foreign to us doing combined races and we used to do it at Daytona every year. Being cognisant of surroundings is the key concern. By doing this at Atlanta and Laguna Seca we will end up with 11 races, which is what we started with.”
This is a tremendous achievement by John and his team in what has surely been the most challenging year in Trans Am. It’s great to hear that AVD Motorsports clients will be competing in this fantastic sport on five more occasions this year.
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