Michelin GT Challenge at VIR – Entry List Notebook
Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The second of two GT-only races is on tap for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship as the series heads to VIRginia International Raceway near Danville, Virginia for the Michelin GT Challenge on Sunday, Aug. 19.

The two-hour, 40-minute race will start at 1 p.m. ET with live television coverage beginning on FS1 for the first hour before moving to FS2 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. ET IMSA Radio also will offer live coverage on IMSA.com, RadioLeMans.com and Sirius XM Radio (Sirius 138/XM 202/App 972). Tickets are available now on VIRNow.com.

It is the ninth of 11 races this season for both the GT Le Mans (GTLM) and GT Daytona (GTD) classes. The entry list features 19 cars, eight from the lead GTLM class and 11 for GTD.

The provisional WeatherTech Championship entry list is available here.

Notes:
- Of the 37 drivers on the provisional pre-event entry list (the No. 16 Wright Motorsports entry has one driver still listed as “TBA”), 16 have at least one previous victory at the 3.27-mile, 17-turn permanent road course.

- Jan Magnussen and Bill Auberlen are tied for most VIR wins among active drivers with three each.

o All three of Magnussen’s wins at VIR have been overall as well as class victories. His first came in the GRAND-AM race in 2007, which he won as a member of Wayne Taylor Racing. The other two came in each of the past two years in the No. 3 Corvette Racing Chevrolet Corvette C7.R alongside co-driver Antonio Garcia. He and Garcia are teamed again in the same car this year.

o All three of Auberlen’s victories came in GRAND-AM GT action in 2002, 2004 and 2005. He’s entered in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 alongside co-driver Robby Foley as he looks for his 59th career IMSA win, which would move him within one of all-time win leader Scott Pruett’s total of 60. The Turner team has won at VIR previously, taking the GTD class victory with drivers Dane Cameron and Markus Palttala back in 2014.

- Three additional drivers in the field have two wins apiece at VIR: Tommy Milner, Andy Lally and Garcia.

o Milner, who hails from Ashton, Virginia, earned his first VIR win in the 2005 GRAND-AM GT race. He added a second victory in 2012 in the ALMS GT class with Corvette Racing. Next weekend, he will share the No. 4 Corvette C7.R with Oliver Gavin – with whom he also co-drove to the 2012 victory. Milner also won the pole for the 2004 GRAND-AM GT race at VIR.

o Lally, who shares the No. 44 Magnus Racing Audi R8 LMS GT3, earned GRAND-AM GT victories at VIR in 2006 and 2010.

-  Only one driver in the field – Magnussen – has more than one pole position at VIR. Magnussen’s poles came in 2011 for the GRAND-AM GT race and the overall and GTLM class pole in 2016.

-  Just four other drivers in this year’s field have won a pole position at VIR. Milner in 2004; No. 67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT driver Ryan Briscoe, who took the American Le Mans Series P2 pole in 2013; No. 911 Porsche GT Team 911 RSR driver Nick Tandy, who took the overall and GTLM class pole then converted it to a victory alongside co-driver Patrick Pilet in 2015; and Madison Snow, who put the No. 48 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracán on the GTD class pole in 2016 and went on to win the next day with co-driver Bryan Sellers.

- Ford Chip Ganassi Racing and Corvette Racing are tied for the most VIR wins among active teams with three apiece. All of the Ganassi team’s previous victories came in GRAND-AM DP competition in 2005, 2008 and 2010. Corvette Racing won the ALMS GT race in 2012 and took GTLM and overall wins in 2016 and 2017.

-  With seven victories, Chevrolet is the winningest manufacturer in IMSA competition at VIR since 2002. That’s one ahead of Porsche, which has the second most, and two ahead of third-place Ferrari.

Previous VIR Race-Winning Drivers (Since 2002) in 2018 Field (16)
Bill Auberlen (3) – GRAND-AM GT – 2002, 2004, 2005
Jan Magnussen (3) – GRAND-AM DP/Overall - 2007; GTLM/Overall – 2016, 2017
Tommy Milner (2) – GRAND-AM GT – 2005, ALMS GT – 2012
Andy Lally (2) – GRAND-AM GT – 2006, 2010
Antonio Garcia (2) – GTLM – 2016, 2017
Justin Marks (1) – GRAND-AM GT – 2004
Patrick Long (1) – DP/Overall – 2006
Oliver Gavin (1) – ALMS GT – 2012
Cooper MacNeil (1) – ALMS GTC – 2012
Ryan Briscoe (1) – ALMS P2 – 2013
Kyle Marcelli (1) – ALMS PC – 2013
Ben Keating (1) – ALMS GTC – 2013
Patrick Pilet (1) – GTLM/Overall – 2015
Nick Tandy (1) – GTLM/Overall – 2015
Bryan Sellers (1) – GTD – 2016
Madison Snow (1) – GTD – 2016
 
Previous VIR Pole Winners (Since 2002) in 2018 Field (5)

Jan Magnussen (2) – GRAND-AM GT – 2011, GTLM/Overall – 2016
Tommy Milner (1) – GRAND-AM GT – 2004
Ryan Briscoe (1) – ALMS P2 – 2013
Nick Tandy (1) – GTLM/Overall – 2015
Madison Snow (1) – GTD – 2016

Previous VIR Race-Winning Teams (Since 2002) in 2018 Field (6)
Ford Chip Ganassi Racing (3) – GRAND-AM DP/Overall – 2005, 2008, 2010
Corvette Racing (3) – ALMS GT – 2012; GTLM/Overall – 2016, 2017
Turner Motorsport (1) – GTD – 2014
Porsche GT Team (1) – GTLM/Overall – 2015
Scuderia Corsa (1) – GTD – 2015
Paul Miller Racing (1) – GTD – 2016

Previous VIR Race-Winning Manufacturers (Since 2002) in 2018 Field (9)
Chevrolet – 7
Porsche – 6
Ferrari – 5
BMW – 4
Lamborghini – 2
Lexus – 2

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