LEXINGTON, Ohio, (Aug. 4, 2013) -Team Cadillac driver Andy Pilgrim finished fourth in his No. 8 Cadillac CTS-Vracer in today's running of the Pirelli World Challenge Championship race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Teammates Johnny O'Connell and Jordan Taylor were classified in 11 and 12.
On the standing start O'Connell (Flowery Branch, Ga.) was able to fall in line and run in fourth. Teammate Pilgrim (Boca Raton, Fla.) had to avoid Taylor (Apopka, Fla.) who had wheel spin and the pair carried on in fifth and eighth. As the eventual winner Alex Figge in the Volvo, checked out, the Cadillac trio was embroiled in a battle with the third through eighth place runners for the first 14 laps. On Lap 14 Taylor reported a low voltage warning and coasted to a stop at the infield just off Turn Two. One half a lap later O'Connell was pushing to get third and hit the back of the Audi of James Sofronas, who checked-up behind a slower GTS car, forcing O'Connell to pit and retire. Pilgrim was able to make a late race pass on the Corvette of Mike Skeen to take fourth.
"I saw Jordan's car hesitate at the start, I thought he stalled it," Pilgrim said. "So my experience said go right around him. I got by Jordan and eventually by Duncan Ende in the Audi. Then we were in a very intense parade for about 13 laps. When you are the third or fourth guy in line you can't go in as deep. I think Sofronas was having trouble getting his tires up to temp early.
Skeen got by me and I was able to get back by when he was held up by traffic late in the race."
The difficult finish hurt O'Connell for the points championship.
"We were working through traffic," O'Connell said. "James got on the back of a Porsche and I was ready to make a run and then James got into the Porsche and I, unfortunately, got into James. I didn't think it was that big of a hit. I guess the front of a Cadillac doesn'tmatch up with the rear of an Audi. You hate this to happen. We lost a lot of championship points today. It hurts me for the championship. We had a good car up until that point. It was a good close battle for third, when the Volvos left everyone. We have three races to go. We need to make the most of them."
Taylor had a disappointing mechanical end.
"I am not sure what went wrong on the start," Taylor said. "I may have messed something up on the starting procedure. It was my first standing start. I had full wheel spin off of the line and got passed by about everybody. I was able to get a few positions back and then on lap 14 it just shut-off on me."
The team will travel to Sonoma Raceway in California for the Pirelli World Challenge Cadillac Grand Prix of Sonoma to run Aug. 23.
The Pirelli World Challenge GT race from Mid-Ohio and Toronto will air on NBC Sports Sunday, Aug. 18th at 2PM eastern.