Tooele, Utah | Alec Udell earned two fifth-place finishes in the Pirelli World Challenge (PWC) SprintX Championship rounds at the Utah Motorsports Campus (UMC) on August 12 – 13. The resident of The Woodlands, Texas teamed with Preston Calvert (Potomac, Maryland) to bring home the top-five finishes in the Pro/Am class of the 60-minute, two-driver format races in Tooele, Utah. The success in the No. 77 Calvert Dynamics Porsche 911 GT3 R continues the Clemson University-student’s string of strong finishes in PWC. Udell earned his first professional podium, a third-place, at the most recent PWC Sprint Championship round at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course at the end of July.
The 3.048-mile track near Salt Lake City has been a popular one for both Udell and Calvert. Each walked away with first-place trophies in 2016 so as Calvert qualified the black and yellow rear-engine Porsche in ninth-place, hopes were high for Saturday’s Race 1, Round 7 of the ten-race championship. Udell, a rising senior majoring in engineering with a minor in economics at Clemson, took over driving duties approximately mid-way through the one-hour race and went on a charge bringing the 911 GT3 R up to fifth-place in class at the checkered flag.
PWC rules state that the “Amateur/Am” driver must qualify the car and run the first stint of the first race. This then allows the “Pro’s” lap time in Race 1 to set the grid for Race 2 where the Professional, Udell in the case of the No. 77, starts Race 2. Udell’s best race lap landed the No. 77 third on the Pro/Am grid. The Porsche Young Driver Academy graduate launched through the field make strong start, a hallmark of the 21 year-old’s style. He held near the front of the pack until turning the Porsche over the Calvert for the final stint. Unfortunately, shortly after the hand-over an incident on course spun and stopped the No. 77 on course. Calvert was able to restart the car and race to the checkered flag. For the second day, the GMG-prepared car crossed under the checkered flag, fifth-place in class.
The SprintX Championship now travels to its final three rounds at the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas, September 1 – 3. Living near Houston, the Austin, Texas-area facility is Udell’s home track. With three races there instead of the usual two rounds – the third round is a make-up date for a rain-canceled race earlier in the summer – Udell has the opportunity to make a big leap in the SprintX and overall PWC GT Driver standings in front of family and friends.
Round 8 of the SprintX Championship from UMC can be seen on tape delayed broadcast on the CBS Sports Network, Sunday August 20 at 2:30 p.m. Eastern Time (ET).
Alec Udell |
“I’m very happy with our performance this weekend. Preston drove very well in both races and we came out with two top-five finishes. I was able to dice it with the front-runners in Race 2 and show what we’re capable of. Can’t wait for COTA in September!”
About Alec Udell |
Alec Udell is a junior studying engineering at Clemson University. The 21 year-old from The Woodlands, Texas began his racing career in karting at age five. He went on to win the Rotax National Points Championship in 2008 and represented his country as part of Team USA in Egypt in the World Championships in 2009. By 2011, he made history by becoming, at the time, the Pirelli World Challenge’s youngest ever competitor at age 15. He has 15 career Pirelli World Challenge GT Cup class wins entering the season and is the 2016 PWC GT Cup Champion.