Heitkotter grabs his first PWC GT victory
Bryan Heitkotter, of Fresno, Calif., converted an early lead to a race win in his Always Evolving Nissan GT-R at the Grand Prix at Utah Motorsports Campus.
Heitkotter, sliced past an incident involving front-row starters Alvaro Parente (K-PAX McLaren 650S) and Michael Cooper of Cadillac Racing, to grab the lead he’d never lose.
Said Heitkotter afterward: “I knew I wasn’t going to pass Parente on the inside going into Turn 1 so I stuck with him on the straightaway at the start. There was space on my outside, so I moved there.
“Our car is really good on the opening lap. And it stuck on the braking zone and I pulled into the lead. From there, it was about hitting my marks and building a gap and keeping the integrity of the tires.
"We worked very hard on the car’s setup for today’s race. The car was good in qualifying but we made it better for the race. The guys at AE Autosport gave me a great car today. It was just amazing to drive.
"Hats off to the team and Nissan for supporting me over the years.”
Adderly Fong drove the Bentley Team Absolute Bentley Continental GT3 from a sixth-place grid position into third-place by lap 3, and ultimately passed the Acura TLX GT of Ryan Eversley on lap 21 to capture second place, and his third podium finish of the season.
Starting from P4, Patrick Long’s Porsche 911 got caught in traffic caused by the initial contact between Parente and Cooper, dropping him as far back as eighth place. But from there, the Wright Motorsports driver sliced forward, passed Eversley four laps from home and claimed the last podium slot.
In GTA, polesitter Frankie Montecalvo drove the No. 66 DIME Racing Mercedes AMG SLS GT3 apparently error-free, successfully fending off passing attempts as he made his way though traffic. Montecalvo's effort provisionally set the new course record for GTA at 1:50.248, secured him top spot on the GTA podium and pole position for Sunday's race.
GTA points leader Martin Fuentes drove his Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 to second, albeit 10sec adrift of the class winner. Michael Schein took third for Wright Motorsports’ Porsche
In GT Cup, Sloan Urry in the TruSpeed Autosport Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car swapped positions several times with Alec Udell in GMG Racing’s Porsche, but Urry eventually eked out a gap to clinch top sport, with third going to McKay Snow of Lehi, driving another Wright Motorsports entry.
Of note, Michael Lewis of Laguna Seca, Calif., drove the Calvert Dynamics/Curb-Agajanian Porsche 911 GT3 R to the fastest lap time of 1:49.525 which qualifies him for P1 in Sunday's Round 17 race.
Pos. Position in class, Class, Name, Hometown, Car, Laps, Status
1. 1, GT, Bryan Heitkotter, Fresno CA, Nissan GTR GT3, 26, Running
2. 2, GT, Adderly Fong, Hong Kong, Bentley Continental GT3, 26, Running
3. 3, GT, Patrick Long, Manhattan Beach CA, Porsche 911 GT3 R, 26, Running
4. 4, GT, Ryan Eversley, Atlanta GA, Acura TLX-GT, 26, Running
5. 5, GT, Colin Thompson, Doylestown PA, McLaren 650S GT3, 26, Running
6. 6, GT, Austin Cindric, Charlotte NC, McLaren 650S GT3, 26, Running
7. 7, GT, Jon Fogarty, Bend OR, McLaren 650S GT3, 26, Running
8. 8, GT, Spencer Pumpelley, Atlanta GA, Acura TLX-GT, 26, Running
9. 1, GTA, Frankie Montecalvo, Highlands NJ, Mercedes AMG SLS GT3, 26, Running
10. 10, GT, Craig Dolby, Melton Mowbray England, Nissan GTR GT3, 26, Running
11. 11, GT, Kyle Marcelli, Barrie ON, Audi R8 LMS GT3, 26, Running
12. 2, GTA, Martin Fuentes, Mexico City Mexico, Ferrari 458 Italia GT3, 26, Running
13. 3, GTA, Michael Schein, Glen Cove NY, Porsche 911 GT3 R, 26, Running
14. 14, GT, Johnny O'Connell, Flowery Branch GA, Cadillac ATS-V.R. GT3, 26, Running
15. 15, GT, Michael Cooper, Syosset NY, Cadillac ATS-V.R. GT3, 26, Running
16. 4, GTA, Brent Holden, Newport Beach CA, Porsche 911 GT3 R, 26, Running
17. 1, GT Cup, Sloan Urry, Park City UT, Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 26, Running
18. 2, GT Cup, Alec Udell, The Woodlands TX, Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 26, Running
19. 3, GT Cup, McKay Snow/McKay Snow, Lehi UT, Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 25, Running
20. 4, GT Cup, Alex Welch, Englewood CO, Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 25, Running
21. 5, GT Cup, Corey Fergus, Columbus OH, Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 25, Running
22. 17, GT, Michael Lewis, Laguna Seca CA, Porsche 911 GT3 R, 24, Running
23. 18, GT, Alvaro Parente, Porto Portugal, McLaren 650S GT3, 2, Not running