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Tuesday Takeaways: IMSA At WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca

Cadillac Racing Turned their season around At Weathertech Raceway. (Photo: Aaron Brink | TPF

Cadillac Racing Turned their season around At Weathertech Raceway. (Photo: Aaron Brink | The Podium Finish)

What do a team that had been struggling, a team that defines consistency and a team and driver moving up the IMSA ladder have in common?

They were all righting the ship at the end of Sunday’s race, the MOTUL Course de Monterey Powered by Hyundai N.

It took 160 minutes for Cadillac Racing to do a complete 180 and put their season back on the right path.

Cadillac led the way to the win on Sunday. (Photo: Cornnell Chu | TPF)

Cadillac led the way to the win on Sunday. (Photo: Cornnell Chu | The Podium Finish)

Renger van der Zande and Sebastien Bourdais brought the No. 01 Cadillac Racing Cadillac V-Series R home on top of the GTP field Sunday, ending the team’s frustration stemming from the first three races of the 2023 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season. After a Bourdais crash in practice on Friday and van der Zande nearly doing the same on Saturday, the team seemed to be continuing that trend going into the race on Sunday.

“With all the effort they are putting in, it’s days and nights of work,” van der Zande said of the team. “They aren’t sleeping much, so it’s amazing to pay it off with a win like this.”

Then, there was a model of consistency in GTD.

Back on the podium for Vassar-Sullivan Racing. (Photo: Aaron Brink | TPF)

Back on the podium for Vassar-Sullivan Racing. (Photo: Cornnell Chu| TPF)

Ben Barnicoat and Jack Hawksworth battled back for yet another podium finish in the No. 14 Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3, finishing second in GTD Pro behind Jules Gounon and Daniel Juncadella in the No. 79 WeatherTech Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3. This marked the eighth consecutive podium finish for Vasser Sullivan, maintaining its class points lead.

“It was probably the wildest race that I’ve seen at Laguna Seca,” said Hawksworth, who was pushed off course early in the race. “It was crazy from start to finish.”

Two cars on the podium for the Kellymoss teams at Weathertech Raceway (Photo: Aaron Brink | TPF)

Two cars on the podium for the Kellymoss teams at Weathertech Raceway (Photo: Aaron Brink | TPF)

Movin’ On Up

Alan Metni, a Kellymoss team and driver, built a winning reputation climbing through the Porsche ladder system, first in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA and most recently in Porsche Deluxe Carrera Cup North America. On Sunday, they took the next step and planted their flag in the sand of the WeatherTech Championship’s GTD class sandbox.

Partnering with legendary Riley Motorsports with two GTD cars this season, Kellymoss put two cars on the podium at WeatherTech Raceway. Metni and Kay van Berlo teamed to win in the No. 91 Porsche 911 GT3 R (992) while the No. 92 Porsche co-driven by class polesitter Alec Udell and co-driver Julien Andlauer finished third.

“I am so proud of the team,” said van Berlo, who anchored the No. 91 car’s victory. “It hasn’t been the easiest couple of weeks, but to come away with a win is just incredible.”

It was an especially monumental moment for Metni, a late starter to racing who won three straight Masters class titles in Porsche GT3 Cup (2018-2020) and the 2022 Pro-Am crown in Carrera Cup before moving up to the WeatherTech Championship this season and becoming a winner in his fourth race of the season.

If it races, I'll write about it, talk about it or shoot it with a camera. I began pursuing a career in motorsports journalism immediately after attending college at Kent State University. I have hosted multiple Motorsports talk shows, worked in Country Music radio, and now i spend every day on the air in the morning with 1300 and 100.9 WMVO and in the afternoons watching the roadways around Central Ohio for 93.7 WQIO. The excitement and the fans make everything I put out there worth while, it's been an exciting 15 years having covered everything from the Daytona 500 to the Rolex 24 and you can find me at pretty much any event run at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. What I like to bring is a look behind the scenes, a look at what and who makes the sport grow. From the guy that welds pieces back at the shop to the host in the tv booth. Everyone has a story and I like to tell it. My main focus here at TPF is looking at the men and women behind the microphone and cameras. My life long goal is to become a member of MRN or PRN Radio and bring the races to you. I hope that what I share now is enjoyable and gives you a unique look in to the world of motorsports. See you at a track soon

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