Best Combined Finish for TeamTGM at VIR

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Best Combined Finish for TeamTGM at VIR

  • TeamTGM is the only IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge team to be 100% dedicated to charities – the Jayne Koskinas Ted Giovanis Foundation and Camp Boggy Creek
  • TeamTGM supports the JKTG Foundation which challenges conventional methods of cancer research.
Alton, Va. (24 August 2019) – Once again TeamTGM was tasked to make last minute strategy calls as the weather went from wet to dry several times during Saturday’s IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge (IMPC) race. But the teamwork and quick thinking brought home a best combined finish of fourth and eighth at the Virginia is for Racing Lovers Grand Prix at Virginia International Raceway (VIR) on Saturday.

It was yet another IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge race weekend that was struck by rain. The TeamTGM Mercedes’ were only able to get on track for two practice sessions on Friday before severe storms rolled through, canceling both the final practice and qualifying which were set for Friday evening.

With qualifying out of the question, the IMPC grid was by set by championship points, leaving the No. 4 Jayne Koskinas Ted Giovanis (JKTG) Foundation / Camp Boggy Creek Mercedes-AMG GT4 of Guy Cosmo and Ted Giovanis to start 12th. The sister No. 46 / Camp Boggy Creek Mercedes-AMG GT4 of Hugh Plumb and Owen Trinkler started 13th.

At the drop of the green flag, dry race conditions only lasted for the first 10 laps when rain began to fall. The majority of the field, including Giovanis in the No. 4 Mercedes, pitted for rain tires during the first full course caution which began on lap six. A bold strategy call by Joe Varde, kept Trinkler out in the No. 46 Mercedes on slick tires, in hopes that the track would dry.

That strategy call paid off when Trinkler began setting lap times nearly seven seconds faster than the lead pack which was still running on rain tires. Trinkler made his way up to a high of third before pitting on lap 29 to hand the car over to Plumb, who reentered the track fifth.

The final 10 laps saw three separate restarts, each with a wetter track surface as the rain continued. Plumb made three clean restarts on slick tires and was on a run to the podium but just missed out to cross the finish line fourth.

Giovanis drove a smart race for his 45 minute starting stint before handing the car off to Cosmo on lap 16. A quick trip in the grass for Cosmo put him a lap down, but a drying track and a brand new set of Michelin tires brought him back up the order to regain the lead under green flag running on lap 26.

Cosmo made one final stop for fuel on lap 30 which took him to the checkered flag to come home eighth – the best finish of the season for Cosmo and Giovanis.

Team Quotes:

Ted Giovanis:
“I am really happy with the result today considering the conditions and we had our best finish of the year. We were a little bit down on straightline speed so we knew that there was no way we were going to catch the top three at the end. Overall it was a really great day for us.”

Guy Cosmo:
“Our race was very exciting. There were a lot of variables thrown at us. Ted (Giovanis) did a great job keeping the car on track during tough conditions. When I got into the car for my stint it was incredibly wet. We decided to put on new slicks and it was rough. I ended up off course at the end of the back straight. I am so disappointed to have made that mistake but we raced back up through the field, passing the leader and pulling away. When we were back on equal footing with everyone in the dry – we did not have the pace. We struggled with the speed and balance to be able to fight through the end. We may have a few dings in the car but we brought it home for our best finish of the year and I am pleased about that.”

Owen Trinkler:
“I think staying out on slicks during my stint was the right call. If I could have found clear traffic then I think we could have leapfrogged the leaders. We are back in our groove but we did not have the overall pace. We missed out on getting on the podium which would have been a big deal for us. A fourth place finish is still a good day. We needed this type of race for a solid performance. I am happy for the guys and that we were able to come home with a top five finish.”

Hugh Plumb: 
“I have never been so happy about a finish. The car is in one piece and we moved up through the field after not getting the best starting position with qualifying being canceled. Everybody did an amazing job. The TeamTGM crew puts everything into these weekends. At the end of the day if you can’t win it, then you bring the car home in one piece.”