ALTON, Va. – official release — Scott LePage/LAT photo — Sean Rayhall had a simple plan entering Saturday’s TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Prototype Challenge (PC) race at Virginia Int’l Raceway.
“Just don’t look back,” Rayhall said after winning his first career pole in Saturday morning’s qualifying session.
Rayhall then took the lead at the drop of the green flag, and pulled away again on a restart with eight minutes remaining to win the opening 45-minute segment in the No. 25 8Star Motorsports Takis/Speedsters ORECA FLM09.
“There is a point where you have to hit your marks more in these races, not because it’s a sprint race, but because you don’t have GTD traffic in front of you going into corners,” Rayhall said. “You may be able to slack off on a braking zone if you have that ahead of you in traffic, or a GTLM (GT Le Mans) car, but here Duncan was in my mirrors so I had to keep pushing. It’s nice when you can relax a little bit more, but you also have to keep pushing.”
Co-driver Luis Diaz will be tasked with taking the car home in Sunday morning’s second segment, which begins at 10:45 a.m. ET. Combined points from the two segments will then determine the final results for the eighth PC race of the season.
Duncan Ende finished second in the No. 09 RSR Racing Linospresso USA ORECA FLM09, which will be driven Sunday by Bruno Junqueira.
“It ended up being a pretty simple affair,” Ende said. “I started off behind Frankie [Montecalvo] and we were just cruising along watching Sean disappear into the distance a little bit. Then Frankie made a bit of a mistake and I cruised on by. After that, I was just negotiating the Lites in traffic.”
Third went to David French, who shares the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports entry with David Ostella.