Another strong showing for Camaros in World Challenge SprintX
PORTLAND – Two more strong runs by Blackdog Speed Shop netted the team fourth- and fifth-place showings Sunday in the second GTS SprintX race in the Pirelli World Challenge’s Rose Cup Weekend at Portland International Raceway.
Tony Gaples and Michael Cooper led the Blackdog attack with a fourth-place finish in their No. 11 Blackdog Speed Shop Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R. Gaples finished just ahead of teammate Andy Pilgrim, who placed fifth with Lawson Aschenbach in the No. 1 Blackdog Speed Shop Camaro.
Starting the one-hour race fifth, Cooper led for the better part of 10 minutes in the middle portion. He took second at the start of the race with a strong charge into the first corner. Cooper then used good torque from the Chevy engine and a nifty move to take first on a restart just 13 minutes in following the first of two full-course cautions.
Meanwhile, Aschenbach went from seventh to third at the start and ran behind his teammate until pitting with 28 minutes left. He handed off to Pilgrim after a stellar pit stop from the Blackdog Speed Shop crew that was just 0.337 seconds over the minimum pit delta.
Cooper handed off to Gaples with 25 minutes left, and the No. 11 Camaro re-entered in second place. After the race’s second full-course caution ended with 12 minutes left, Gaples did a determined job defending his position against much faster cars while at the same time racing clean.
Blackdog Speed Shop returns to GTSX competition Aug. 10-12 at Utah Motorsports Campus.
LAWSON ASCHENBACH, NO. 1 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: “Another podium would have been great but it wasn’t meant to be today. Our Blackdog Speed Shop Camaros were on rails both days. The start was great and went according to plan. It was great for our team to have both Camaros to run up front together. The pit stop was excellent again – just 0.3 seconds over the minimum! Unfortunately we didn’t have the ultimate pace to chase down the leader or to hold off the faster cars behind us. That’s the only down part of the weekend. But hopefully we can get back to our winning ways at Utah.”
ANDY PILGRIM, NO. 1 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: “This was another hard race, as they all are in this category. I have to say that our Camaro GT4.R was very strong. Lawson drove well at the start, and the team performed brilliantly to put us in good position after the pit stop. We had hoped to get back on the podium but we were missing some pace at the end. I did enjoy the fight with Tony toward the end. We both drove clean and fair, which is the way it should be. There’s one more SprintX race left, and we will want to end the season on as strong a note as possible.”
TONY GAPLES, NO. 11 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: “On any given day, you want to measure yourself against the best in your class. So for me, today’s race was a lot of fun and very exciting. I feel like I drove as well as I could have, I just didn’t have the speed to either challenge the cars ahead of me or hold off the ones behind me. Hats off to Michael for doing an amazing job in his stint. Our Blackdog Speed Shop Camaro was incredible all weekend, and the team did a great job of getting the car prepared. I’m already looking forward to closing the SprintX season with a strong showing at Utah.”
MICHAEL COOPER, NO. 11 BLACKDOG SPEED SHOP CHEVROLET CAMARO GT4.R: “I felt pretty in sync with this Team Chevy Blackdog Speed Shop Camaro this weekend. The car has been solid all weekend. It was really hot today and a lot of people were sliding around. But I was able to keep the tires under the car and be pretty smooth. It was nice to lead for a bit. We had a little trouble with the driver change but given the yellow shortly after, I don’t think it made much of a difference. It was good fun to race and see Tony put up a good fight there in the end. I’m looking forward to doing it again in Utah.”
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)