Second straight race weekend with pair of SprintX Monday contests
LINCOLNSHIRE, Illinois – Blackdog Speed Shop looks to ride its momentum from its most recent race in Pirelli World Challenge into Lime Rock Park as the GTS class moves back to SprintX competition for Memorial Day weekend. The team’s pair of Chevrolet Camaro GT4.Rs are part of a 35-car field on the series’ shortest track at 1.5 miles.
The team is coming off a fruitful weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park with a pair of victories for Lawson Aschenbach and a third-place GTSA showing for Tony Gaples.
As was the case in the first two GTSX events of 2018, Aschenbach and Andy Pilgrim will team together in the No. 1 Blackdog Speed Shop Camaro GT4.R, with Gaples and Michael Cooper sharing the No. 11 Blackdog Speed Shop Chevrolet. The quartet have combined for three podium finishes in four GTSX races this season.
Gaples and Cooper were first to put Blackdog Speed Shop on a SprintX podium at Circuit of The Americas in March. It was an encouraging start to the team’s first foray into multi-driver endurance racing.
The pairing will look to build on success from last year’s Lime Rock Sprint weekend: Gaples was third in GTSA while Cooper recorded a second-place finish in GT competition. They hope to improve on their fifth-place SprintX championship standing.
Likewise, Aschenbach and Pilgrim would like nothing more than to move up from their third-place SprintX points position with a strong Lime Rock weekend. They are coming off a pair of third-place finishes at VIR last month, and each have excellent records at Lime Rock to fall back on.
Aschenbach earned GTS victories with Blackdog Camaros in 2013 and 2016, while Pilgrim recorded a pair of GT class runner-up finishes during his last trip to Lime Rock in 2013.
The Pirelli World Challenge GTS class will compete at Lime Rock Park Friday, Saturday and Monday. Qualifying is set for 2:25 p.m. ET on Saturday with both races Monday: Race 1 at 9:45 a.m. and Race 2 at 2:25 p.m. Live race coverage will be available at World-Challenge.com as well as SiriusXM Channel 383.
LAWSON ASCHENBACH, NO. 1 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: “After two victories in Canada, I’m hoping to keep our momentum going at Lime Rock Park. It’s back to SprintX competition along with Andy in our Blackdog Speed Shop Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R. Our pair of thirds together at VIR were encouraging, but we’re eager for our first SprintX win as a team. We have two really strong lineups and great racecars in the Camaro GT4.R. More than anything, this weekend will be about managing traffic and nailing the driver change. With such a short lap and crowded field, any penalty will be augmented.”
ANDY PILGRIM, NO. 1 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: ““I really look forward to Lime Rock Park races on Memorial Day weekend. If the weather cooperates, there is always a huge crowd and the fans are such knowledgeable enthusiasts. Lime Rock is another old school track; it’s not too wide, there’s not too much runoff with a major fast right-hander onto the front straight which you have to get just right. This could easily be the busiest race all year for traffic with so many cars on such a short track. That should add a bunch of fun for all of us.”
TONY GAPLES, NO. 11 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: “Races at Lime Rock Park are always interesting ones. A lap is almost over before you know it, but that’s part of the fun and the challenge. It’s multiplied this year with the switch to SprintX; that means more cars on an already crowded track. So there’s a real balance of being aggressive but also taking care with two races Monday. We’ve been successful as a team at Lime Rock over the years with our Camaros, so I’m hopeful we can do the same with the Camaro GT4.R. Big crowds always show up when we race on Memorial Day weekend. Hopefully we will put on a great show with a couple more Blackdog Speed Shop wins for them.”
MICHAEL COOPER, NO. 11 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: “I’m excited to get back to driving our Chevy Camaro GT4.R, especially with the momentum Blackdog Speed Shop is carrying from the double win in Canada last weekend. While the car has been strong in the sprint races, we are all still hunting for our first SprintX win. Strategy and pit stop execution will once again be crucial, especially with so many cars and such a short lap at Lime Rock Park. The chances of getting slowed down in traffic during the pit stop window are extremely high this weekend. It could make or break anyone’s race.”
About Blackdog Speed Shop
Blackdog Speed Shop Blackdog Speed Shop is a high-performance, custom car builder in the northern suburbs of Chicago specializing in ground-up car builds, high-performance upgrades for engines, transmissions, suspension and exhaust including computer and dyno tuning. Whether you have a modern muscle car, vintage muscle, 1930s hot rod or a foreign exotic, you will enjoy the Blackdog experience.
Ever dreamed of piloting a real World Challenge race car? Blackdog offers rental and “arrive and drive” racing in addition to purpose-built cars. Call Blackdog today at (855) 4-BLACKDOG to schedule an appointment or discuss the best way to put you in the driver’s seat!
About Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R
Built to global GT4 regulations, the Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R is based on the road-going Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. It features a 6.2-liter, Chevrolet small block V8 that was developed and validated by Chevrolet Racing. Power is delivered to a six-speed Xtrac sequential transmission with paddle-shifting and adjustable traction control. Additional mechanical features include an Xtrac racing limited-slip differential, a two-way adjustable Ohlins Racing dampers and adjustable ABS along with Brembo brakes.
Blackdog Speed Shop at a Glance
•Pirelli World Challenge GTS Driver Championships – 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017
•Pirelli World Challenge GTS Team Championships – 2013, 2017
•Pirelli World Challenge GTS Manufacturer Championships – 2013, 2017
•Pirelli World Challenge GTS Victories: 25 – Most in class history
Chevrolet in Pirelli World Challenge
•Chevrolet Camaro second all-time in PWC victories by model (53).
•Chevrolet first all-time in PWC victories by brand (127)
•General Motors first all-time in PWC victories by manufacturer (190)
•Chevrolet five Manufacturer Championships (1990-91, 1994, 2013, 2017)