St. Petersburg, Fla. – It was a rollercoaster of an event at the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg for Sloan Urry and his No. 02 Engel & Volkers Porsche, but the weekend ended on a high note when he delivered a podium finish with a run to second place in Round 4 of the Pirelli World Challenge. The result sees Urry sit third in the provisional GT Cup presented by MOMO championship standings with 334 points.
Urry also took home two additional awards following his performance on Sunday. During the podium ceremonies, Urry was awarded the Optima Battery Best Standing Start of the race for making up five spots and the VP Racing Fuels Hard Charger Award for moving up 12 positions from the start of the race to the finish.
The podium was a welcome result for Urry and his TruSpeed Autosport team as the St. Pete weekend did not open how the group had hoped. Upon the standing start in Race 1 on Saturday, two GT-A cars got together and took out the three top championship contenders in the GT Cup category before they even made it to the green flag. The No. 02 Engel and Volkers Porsche sustained significant damage and the team was forced to use an earlier version of the car as a backup for Race 2.
With the grid for the second race determined by fastest lap in Race 1 which the No. 02 Engel & Volkers was unable to run, Urry started Sunday’s event from sixth position. He wasted no time in moving forward in the opening laps and carefully maneuvered around some chaos on Lap 2 when the track was once again nearly blocked by crashed GT-A machinery.
Following nearly 30 minutes under caution to clean up the multi-car wreckage, the race restarted with 20 minutes remaining and Urry led the GT Cup field to the green. Urry had a great battle with his TruSpeed/Kelly Moss teammate Colin Thompson, with Thompson ultimately sneaking by for the race victory.
“I’m just happy to finish the race today,” enthused Urry during the podium celebrations. “I had a good launch at the start and got by a couple of cars on the first lap. Coming around on Lap 2 – actually a lucky thing – I made a mistake in Turn 1 when I was chasing down the cars ahead and came around Turn 2 to a pretty massive wreck. It’s a lucky mistake I guess, it saved me at the end of the day. It’s always fun racing with Colin (Thompson). He’s a good driver, drives clean and he had a good pass on me. If anybody is going to beat me, I’m glad it’s my teammate. It’s a great 1-2 for TruSpeed/Kelly Moss.”
The TruSpeed Autosport team and Urry were thrilled to host some 100 SecurityNational guests as part of the big St. Petersburg Grand Prix weekend.
“It was great to have the SecurityNational and Engel & Volkers people here,” said Urry. “They’re the ones that support us and get us to the track so a big thank you to them of course. I’m glad to have them up on the podium with us.”
TruSpeed Autosport Team Owner Tyler Tadevic was pleased with Urry’s performance and thrilled to deliver a positive result for Engel & Volkers and SecurityNational.
“It was really tough for my Engel & Volkers car on Saturday when our race was wasted on the start,” said Tadevic. “It was really no fault of our own, just no place to go and that’s the downside of standing starts on occasion. In Race 2 it was literally the polar opposite. There were some circumstances that transpired where there was a yellow for an incident on track and fortunately Sloan (Urry) and Colin (Thompson) were able to make through. Sloan inherited the lead at that point and we were hopeful that he would be able to retain that lead but Colin was able to get by him there. Because of the wreck that Sloan had the day before, we weren’t able to repair that car, so we had to go back to the car we had used at Circuit of the Americas and I just think that car was a little down on power so Colin was able to get back by us. At the end of the day, the weekend was a mixed bag. I really can’t wait to get to Long Beach. It’s our home track, and we’ll have a big activation program there. Long Beach is always a big deal, we’re really, really excited about it.”
Next up for TruSpeed Autosport is the Long Beach Grand Prix in three weeks (April 17-19) held through the streets of Long Beach, California.