By Patrick Rall
This past weekend the 2013 SRT Viper GTS-R race teams headed
to Road America in Wisconsin for their second American LeMans Series race of
the season after making their debut in Ohio.
The #91 SRT Viper GTS-R team sponsored by Forza Motorsport 4
started in the 11th place in the GT class and 20th overall
with Dominic Farnbacher starting the race in the blue and silver Viper. An hour into the race, Farnbacher had worked
up to 9th in the class and 21st overall. Unlike his stablemate in the #93 Viper,
Farnbacher did not use his first pit stop for a driver change. Two hours and seven minutes into the race,
the #91 Viper jumped into the pits for fresh tires, fuel and a driver change as
Kumo Wittmer climbed into the car for the first time of the day. At the driver
change, the #91 Viper had slipped back to 11th in the class and 23rd
overall. At the two hour and 35 minute
mark, Wittmer had moved the Forza Motorsport car up to the 10th
position in the class (still 23rd overall) and at the 3 hour and 18
minute mark, Wittmer brought the #91 car into the pits for fresh tires and
fuel. From there, Kumo Wittmer would
drive the #91 Viper to the checked flag and a 9th place GT class
finish (22nd overall) -
marking the best finish for the modern Viper GTS-R. Wittmer and Farnbacher were only 1 lap down
at the end of the 4 hour race.
Unfortunately, things didn’t go quite so smoothly for the
#93 Pennzoil Ultra Viper GTS-R team.
After starting in the 12th spot in the GT class and 24th
overall, starting driver Marc Goossens spent the first hour and 4 minutes
working his way up to 10th in the class and 22nd overall. At 3:35pm, Goossens brought the yellow and
silver Viper into the pits for 4 tires, a tank full of fuel and the team made
their first driver change. Unfortunately,
after about 45 minutes behind the wheel Tommy Kendall ran off of the track in
turn 3, hitting the wall hard enough to do damage to the front end that would
force the team of Kendall and Goossens out of the race. The #93 Viper GTS-R finished in the second to
last overall position, 13th in the class.
While it was disappointing to see the #93 Pennzoil Ultra car
crash early in the race, the #91 SRT Viper GTS-R posted the pairings best
finish since rejoining the American LeMans Series. The teams will be in action again in two
weeks at the Baltimore Sports Car Challenge Presented by SRT.