By Mark Robinson
Madison Snow and Bryan Sellers, a pair of road-racing veterans whose resume includes a win this year in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, showed their skill throughout Friday in capturing the much-awaited, season-opening race of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America campaign.
Snow put the No. 16 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo EVO on pole in qualifying earlier Friday, and the co-drivers kept it at the point other than through the mandatory pit stop cycle. Sellers took the wheel for the second half of the 50-minute sprint and reached the checkered first overall and in the Pro class despite battling electrical gremlins.
"Without Madison’s effort in the opening stint, it would have been a lot more difficult," Sellers said. "He handed it over with a four-second gap. From there it was kind of managing the gap, but we had a problem with the electronics in the car. The car kept shutting off, so I had no power steering, no power half the time.
"It was difficult, but the car was really good when it was all on," Sellers added. "We just had to make the most of it. When it was good for a couple laps, I could stretch (the lead), and then we’d stutter and he’d come back to us."
Jacob Eidson, in No. 6 US RaceTronics, Lamborghini Beverly Hills car, chased down and made a few runs at Sellers in the closing minutes, but was rebuffed each time. The closest came on the penultimate lap with two minutes remaining. Sellers slid wide in Turn 7 and completely into the grass before recovering and holding off the charging Eidson. The margin of victory was 0.678 seconds.
"Right at the apex (of Turn 7), it completely shut off, so I lost all power steering," Sellers explained. "I was at the middle and it stopped turning and went flying off the end of the road. That’s one of those things where everyone that doesn’t know the backstory is like, ‘What is he doing? He’s been around longer than this.’ It was a handful."
Brandon Gdovic finished third overall and in Pro in the No. 46 Precision Performance Motorsports, Lamborghini Palm Beach entry.
Corey Lewis – also part of the winning Rolex 24 stable in January with Snow and Sellers in the GT Daytona class – teamed with Madison’s younger brother McKay Snow on Friday to win the ProAm division in the No. 63 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte entry, 11.36 seconds ahead of the No. 25 Prestige Performance with WTR, Lamborghini Paramus car co-driven by Ashton Harrison and Andrea Amici. Leo Lamelas took third in ProAm in the No. 24 US RaceTronics, Lamborghini Westlake Huracan.
"McKay did an awesome job," Lewis said. "It’s great working with another Snow. … The whole family’s here and to have the Snows on the top step in both categories is something pretty cool for them. Stoked to be a part of it. To be on the top step with McKay, we did what we need to do. Tomorrow is Race 2 and we’re thinking points already for the championship."
Victor Gomez IV was originally slated to drive with Lewis in ProAm, but Change Racing opted to make him the only driver in the Am category, so he registered the class win in the No. 29 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte Lamborghini. Gomez said he is focusing this weekend on getting accustomed to driving the Lamborghini after most recently driving in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama, also sanctioned by IMSA.
"You have a lot of technology (in the Lamborghini), Gomez said. "You have ABS, you have traction control, you have a lot of downforce. It’s definitely faster and you can brake harder in the corners, so I’m getting used to it. Right now, it’s just concentrate, get up to pace and become faster."
LB Cup competition saw Randy Sellari drive to a comfortable win in the No. 03 Change Racing, Lamborghini Charlotte car, with John Hennessy second in the No. 33 US RaceTronics, Lamborghini San Diego entry and Sydney McKee third in the No. 87 Prestige Performance with WTR, Lamborghini Paramus Lamborghini.
"I was just trying to be consistent," Sellari said. "I heard there was a decent gap (to second place) and they said just don’t do anything crazy, to hold my position. I followed the people in front of me and just held on. It’s a great way to start of the year."
Eidson and Aghakhani start on pole in Saturday’s second race of the weekend that streams live on IMSA.com/tvlive at 10:15 a.m. ET.
The Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America season was delayed four months due to the coronavirus pandemic. Road America is the first of five doubleheader weekends on the schedule, to be followed by VIRginia International Raceway (Aug. 21-23), Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta (Sept. 4-6), WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca (Oct. 30-Nov. 1) and Sebring International Raceway (Nov. 11-13).