Posted (05/04/2015) -
Team Sahlen came into round 3 of Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge at Mazda Raceway – Laguna Seca with aspirations of being the Top Porsche in the ST Class. These goals were achieved with the Team in all facets of weekend. Fastest Porsche in Practice Session #2 in P4. Fastest Porsche in Qualifying in P4. And then in the race, finishing at the Top Porsche in 8th place in the ST class.
The start of the race weekend was at Test Day on Wednesday. As has been the custom of Team Sahlen, then majority of the time was spent working on Set Up for the #42 & #43.
“The effort and work by the Engineering staff and crew on Test Day is what paved the way for Team Sahlen to have the best Porsche in the ST field. We worked hard on set up and it paved the way the rest of our weekend’s efforts.” – shared Wayne Nonnamaker
On Practice Day, Team Sahlen continued to work on set up, even making changes from session 1 to session 2. This paid off with moving up to 4th and being Top Porsche. In Qualifying, Jeff Segal pulled off a MEGA lap and placed the #43 racer in 4th place on the grid. Will Nonnamaker was suffering from a failing transmission in practice and knew going into Qualifying that he would have to make do without 2nd gear.
“You use 2nd gear at total of 3 times at this track, with the most serious of occasions being coming onto the long front straightaway, when you come out of the tight last corner. I was hoping to spot ahead of 1 or 2 fellow competitors, but instead we started the race 17 out of 28 competitors.” – shared Will Nonnamaker
At the start of the race, Jeff Segal took his time, trying to stay out of trouble. He partially succeeded in the beginning, stabilizing in the top 5 in class. But then he was accidentally bumped aside. At 1st this tap seemed incidental, yet as the race wore on, this caused a slight crack in the front subframe that caused the #43 entry to eventually retire.
This left the #42 driven by Will Nonnamaker as the sole remaining Team Sahlen entry to bring home the honors. With the back up gearbox now installed, Will now had 2nd gear to battle it out with his fellow ST competitors. Will had taken the charge early on the race to get to the front. Each lap he picked off one competitor after another. And at the 1 hour and 10 minute mark, he had the #42 racer in 9th place. Under full green conditions, the Team Sahlen crew had an excellent pit stop, jumping the #31 entry. This placed finishing driver Jeff Segal in 8th place, where he dutifully maintained his position till the remainder of the event.
The 8th place finish was good for top honors among the Porsche contingent in the ST class. The 8th place finish also maintained Team Sahlen’s position of 8th place in both the Driver and Team Championship.
The Continental Sports Car Challenge event from Mazda Raceway – Laguna Seca will be aired at 9 am on May 17th on FoxSports1.
The next event for Team Sahlen will be at Watkins Glen International on June 27th. This is the home event for Sahlen’s, with the premier TUDOR United SportsCar Championship event being the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen.
2015 Team Sahlen Campaign Partners:
Tarett Engineering, Guard Transmission, Forgeline, Porsche of Beachwood, Pittsburgh International Race Complex, HubstandsPRO, MSI Racing Products, NGK Spark Plugs, CM Racing Products, Mothers Polishes, Grassroots Motorsports Magazine, Maxima Oil, CV Products, Design Engineering Inc., Hella, Hard Brakes, Penske Shocks, Alcon Rotors, Lamin-X, Optima Batteries and TheRaceSite.com.