With a closely-matched field of GT-only machines taking on the two-hour, 40-minute Michelin GT Challenge at Virginia International Raceway, it was a tight race to the finish for the No. 57 Heinricher Racing with Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3 on Saturday. The car finished seventh in the GTD order.
Time on track over the two-day race weekend was limited due to the second practice being washed out by heavy rains. Alvaro Parente and Misha Goikhberg worked hard to move forward and improve the car from their fourth-row start in eighth position.
Maintaining his position from the start, Goikhberg was consistent as the field went through two caution periods. A Lap 19 pit stop brought Goikhberg in for a fresh set of tires and fuel as he went back out for a second, 55-minute stint.
Taking over at just about the two-hour mark, Parente returned to the track, amid various GT battles. With a race that saw one hour and 40 minutes of green flag running, Parente brought home the No. 57 Acura NSX GT3 seventh.
Heinricher Racing will head to the next IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship weekend on September 4-6 for the six-hour Michelin Endurance Challenge at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.
"VIR is always a close-quartered racetrack to battle on. Misha drove a strong and rare double opening stint for a silver driver. He handed a tough-handling race car to Alvaro who, as usual, squeezed out every ounce of performance that was available today. We’ll take a top seven finish but we expect to compete for podiums, so there is some work to do. A big congratulations to our sister car on a hard-earned, second-place finish."
"It was a tough race for us today and we struggled with the stability that we needed in the car to get through our stint, so it didn’t go as smoothly as we would have hoped. We just focused on getting the best result we could and finishing in one piece. We are going to look back at the data and learn from it so that we can be ready for Road Atlanta."
"Today was tough. The changes that we made for the race didn’t work like we had hoped, which made it a difficult race for us, especially with such limited passing opportunities. On the positive side, we learned things about the car so we are looking forward to a good result at Road Atlanta in a few weeks."