RealTime Racing Acura NSX GT3 Earns SprintX Top 10
5/23/2017 6:59:00 PM
- Mark Wilkins and Peter Kox place ninth in Saturday's event
- Tom Dyer and Ryan Eversley just miss top-10 berth with 11th-place run
- Weather washes away Sunday race, make-up date to be announced
The Acura NSX GT3s of RealTime Racing continued their early-season progression in Pirelli World Challenge competition, earning their first top-10 result in SprintX competition.
The team of Peter Kox and Mark Wilkins made up six positions in a tightly-packed field to place ninth in what was supposed to have been the first of two PWC SprintX races at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park this weekend. Wilkins took the #93 Acura NSX GT3 from the 15th spot on the grid and made up three places before handing off to Kox. The Dutchman did the rest of the work, gaining three positions to claim a ninth-place result.
"The driver change was perfect," Kox said. "We decided to leave Mark in for a little longer before making the stop. Our strategy played well because we had a few laps of clear air. I think we also made up three positions on our pit stop. We had no problems."
Driver changes have proven to be a key part of the new format introduced to the GT class of PWC in 2017. Previously, GT races in the series didn't even factor in regular pit stops, let alone stops for driver changes. But the Acura squad has avoided pitfalls through the early season and used the stops to its advantage.
"The pit stop was good," said Tom Dyer, who shares the #43 Acura NSX GT3 with Ryan Eversley. "The team nailed it in terms of getting the required timing correct. Kudos to them because that's two races in a row that we've been right on the money and that's not easy to do."
Eversley qualified 11th in his Acura NSX GT3, but getting through the tightly-bunched field on the narrow track proved problematic. A couple of untimely bumps from behind didn't help progress, yet Eversley and Dyer held station to place 11th.
"We had a decent start, but after getting rear-ended twice we lost a couple spots," Eversley recalled. "We made our way back up, but it was really hard to do with the aero wash these GT3 cars make at this track."
The RealTime Racing Acuras were slotted into 12th and 15th for Sunday's race, but day-long rains soaked the track and made conditions unfit for competition. After exhausting all potential options, the series decided to postpone the event. A make-up date will be announced by the series as soon as possible.
"It was absolutely the right call [to cancel the race]," Wilkins said. "I'm always excited to race here in the rain, because I've turned quite a few wet laps here, so I know the rain line very well. When it rains really hard here, in the spring, the ground gets pretty saturated and there ends up being flooding on the track. Then, it becomes a big safety issue."
The team won't have much time to reflect on its progress this week as RealTime must head from Ontario to Connecticut, where the series will run a pair of SprintX events at Lime Rock Park May 26-27.
The Acura NSX GT3 racecar utilizes the production NSX's lightweight multi-material body with aluminum-intensive space frame, and is powered by a 3.5-liter, 75-degree, twin-turbocharged DOHC V-6 engine. The engine uses the same design specifications as the production 2017 Acura NSX, including the block, heads, valve train, crankshaft, pistons and dry-sump lubrication system. The engine is paired with a 6-speed, sequential-shift racing gearbox, delivering power to the rear wheels. The Acura NSX is produced at the Performance Manufacturing Center in Ohio.
SprintX Results Saturday:
|1||Cooper/J. Taylor||Cadillac Racing||Cadillac ATS- V.R.|
|2||Long/Bergmeister||Wright Motorsports||Porsche 911 GT3|
|3||O'Connell/R. Taylor||Cadillac Racing||Cadillac ATS- V.R.|
|9||Kox/Wilkins||RealTime Racing||Acura NSX GT3|
|11||Eversley/Dyer||RealTime Racing||Acura NSX GT3|