LEXINGTON, Ohio – Cadillac Racing driver Michael Cooper won the second race of the Pirelli World Challenge GT Championship weekend run at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course today. Teammate Johnny O’Connell completed the podium with a third place run.
Cooper (Syosset, N.Y.) took the green flag from the front row in second. He was able to get a good jump on the pole sitter Alvaro Parente (No. 9 McLaren) going into the first turn side-by-side on the outside. Keeping the No. 8 Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe under him off-line he took the lead over the hill of the second turn. Soon after the Acura TLX of second place finisher Ryan Eversley appeared in his rearview camera. Cooper was able to hold off several passing attempts from the big horsepower Acura down the long back stretch to post his second win of the season (first was at Barber Motorsports Park). Meanwhile O’Connell was in several battles of his own. As Parente held the final podium spot he was forced off the track in traffic allowing O’Connell to take the final step on the podium giving Cadillac Racing a one-three finish on the day.
“I knew I had to be aggressive at the start and go for it,” Cooper said. “It wasn’t to the extent of all or nothing, just tempered aggression. Parente and I were close going down the straight, I was able to out brake him and get around the outside. I had a nose in front of him going into Turn 5 and was able to complete the pass. Eversley had me under pressure after that and for most of the race. The traffic today was crazy. I lost time a couple of laps and had to make it back up. It is a great day for Cadillac Racing with Johnny also on the podium.”
“A great weekend for Cadillac,” O’Connell exclaimed. “Mike did an awesome job winning that race under big pressure. We started fifth and finished third, always proud when we can move up like that and finish on the podium. We were a little better with the Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe yesterday. But it is a testament to the team that is always working hard to improve everything to get on the podium.”
The Pirelli World Challenge Series races from Mid-Ohio Sports Car course will be televised Sunday, August 4 at 4 p.m. The series will travel to Utah Motorsports Park for rounds 16 and 17 to run Aug. 12-14.