RACE: Round 8 of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship
Television: LIVE on FS2, Saturday, July 22 at 3:00 PM ET
TRACK: At 1.5-miles, the Lime Rock Park bullring is the shortest circuit on the 2017 IMSA calendar.
No. 86 Michael Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3: Ozz Negri, Jeff Segal
No. 93 Michael Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3: Andy Lally, Katherine Legge
No. 93 Acura NSX GT3: 3rd with 179 points
No. 86 Acura NSX GT3: 8th with 152 points
Michael Shank Racing’s recent results have not only boosted the team’s rank in the championship standings, but has also put Acura right in the thick of the manufacturer’s championship battle. Acura is just four points out of the manufacturer’s championship lead.
1. Ferrari — 212 points
2. Mercedes-AMG — 211 points
3. Acura — 208 points
A LOOK AT MSR LIME ROCK PARK HISTORY: The 2017 event will mark Michael Shank Racing’s first race at Lime Rock Park since the 2013 Rolex Series finale in 2013. Prototypes haven’t raced at Lime Rock since that year, so now competing as a GTD team, Michael Shank Racing returns. Though the team hasn’t had the opportunity to race at the track as much as others in the category, Michael Shank Racing has a strong record at the track having picked up two runner-up finishes in 2011 and 2013 as well as a third place podium result in 2010.
Michael Shank Racing finished runner-up in its most recent visit to the track in 2013 with Gustavo Yacaman and the late Justin Wilson in the team’s No. 6 Daytona Prototype.
2010: Started 7th Finished 3rd Brian Frisselle, Michael Valiante (DP)
2010: Started 11th Finished 7th John Pew, Ozz Negri (DP)
2011: Started 6th Finished 2nd John Pew, Ozz Negri (DP)
2012: Started 8th Finished 10th John Pew, Ozz Negri (DP)
2013: Started 9th Finished 6th John Pew, Ozz Negri (DP)
2013: Started 4th Finished 2nd Gustavo Yacaman, Justin Wilson (DP)
LIME ROCK PODIUM – A FAMILIAR SIGHT: All four Michael Shank Racing drivers have sprayed the podium champagne at Lime Rock with a cumulative five wins and nine podiums.
LIME ROCK DRIVER HIGHLIGHTS:
Ozz Negri: Negri stood on the podium with a second place finish in 2011 while racing in the Prototype ranks for Michael Shank Racing.
Jeff Segal: Segal has made several starts at Lime Rock Park with a best IMSA WeatherTech finish of third in 2010. He won a Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge (formerly KONI Challenge) race driving a BMW M3 in the GS class at the track in 2008. It was his first professional race win.
Andy Lally: Having grown up in Northport, New York, Lime Rock Park can be considered one of Lally’s home tracks where he has an extensive amount of experience. Lally has four class wins (2001, 2006, 2010, 2016) at the track as well as an additional podium result of second (2004).
Katherine Legge: Legge has made one start at Lime Rock Park in which she stood on the podium in third, driving the DeltaWing Racing Prototype in the American Le Mans Series (2013).
AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL IS BACK: Back by popular demand is the patriotic livery of each of Michael Shank Racing’s Acura NSX GT3 machines at Lime Rock Park. Created by Acura’s Global Design Chief Dave Marek, the No. 86 Acura NSX GT3 of Jeff Segal and Ozz Negri features artwork of Uncle Sam while the No. 93 Acura NSX GT3 of Katherine Legge and Andy Lally features artwork of the Statue of Liberty. The wrap was applied utilizing AERO™ Advanced Paint Technology, a partner of Michael Shank Racing that has provided many stunning liveries for the team since 2013.
NEW FOR 2017: In addition to the brand new cars and drivers in the Michael Shank Racing stable, the team has also added seven additional team members for the two car-effort. New for 2017 is Michael Shank Racing General Manager Tim Keene, who spent time in a management role at DeltaWing Racing and Chip Ganassi Racing.
MICHAEL SHANK RACING MERCHANDISE: Reacting to robust fan demand and reflecting the new on-track program, Michael Shank Racing has partnered with Styled Aesthetic, a full service apparel and graphic design company, to produce a variety of new items. A range of t-shirts, fleece tops, and hats with various designs will be available with shirt sizes including Men S-3XL, Women XS-2XL, and Kid 2T-Youth L. For online purchases: http://styledaesthetic.com/michael-shank-racing/
Why 86 and 93? The number 86 represents Acura’s birth in 1986, while the number 93 represents the year HPD was founded in 1993.
ACURA NSX GT3 SPECS:
Chassis – Production multi-material, aluminum-intensive space frame, manufactured at the Performance Manufacturing Center in Ohio, alongside production Acura NSX vehicles
Safety equipment – Steel roll cage, carbon fiber driver’s seat shell, six-point safety harness, fresh air intake system, on-board fire suppression system
Engine – Acura 3.5-liter, 75-degree, twin-turbocharged DOHC V-6, using the same design specifications as the production NSX, including the cylinder block, heads, valve train, crankshaft, pistons and dry-sump lubrication system
Transmission – Six-speed sequential, paddle-operated, rear-wheel drive
Andy Lally, No. 93 Acura NSX GT3: “Lime Rock Park was where I took my first driving school and it was very close to home. I have a lot of great memories here with four wins in GRAND-AM, ALMS and IMSA events over the years including last year’s win which was one of the most gratifying wins of my life. The track came up with a less than optimal way to band aid a problem they were having with track safety and it has turned the race into a Bristol style atmosphere which although it was probably not intended to do so, has produced some of the only true short track style racing that we see in sports car racing. It is a different event. You drive different and the aggression levels are turned up to 11. It causes a lot of conflict and to be honest, it’s entertaining for the fans and makes for good TV so I’m all for it.”
Katherine Legge, No. 93 Acura NSX GT3: “Lime Rock is a track that I have only ever raced at once, so I am watching video and doing sim work to try and get back up to speed there. I am lucky to have three great teammates to help me too, as they all have a lot of experience there. It’s a very fast and unique track that has only one slow chicane section but all cars seem to be within a very small margin of each other. It will be a tough race. A lot of great racing – with no prototype cars, it’s going to be an epic GT battle! Tons of overtaking and strategy to keep things interesting.”
Ozz Negri, No. 86 Acura NSX GT3: “I have not been to Lime Rock Park for some years but I must say I loved the last couple of races we did there in the Daytona Prototype. It’s a bullring so it’s a short lap time and it is a great old school race track. I was on the podium there with my good friend John Pew and Michael Shank Racing always gave us a good car for Lime Rock so I’m looking forward to going back.”
Jeff Segal, No. 86 Acura NSX GT3: “Lime Rock brings happy memories for me because that was where we clinched our 2012 GT championship. It’s also where I won my first professional race (Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, 2008). It’s quite similar to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in a lot of ways with the speed and nature of the corners. We showed a lot of promise there and I think that momentum could carry over to Lime Rock. We had some disappointment there so we have things to clean up, but it is nice to get right back on the horse and get after it.”