Altamonte Springs, FL May 27, 2014 – Mitchum Motorsports looked to bounce back from a tough trip to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca by rebuilding, regrouping, and responding strong at the Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park for the latest round of the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. While it wasn’t without its own hurdles, the weekend would certainly be much closer to what the team knows it’s capable of.
Mitchum fielded two BMW 128i race cars in the ST class, piloted by Dillon Machavern and Dylon Murcott in the #10 and Lee Carpentier and Dane Moxlow in the #11. The #11’s outing was bittersweet, as the team put together an incredible effort to rebuild the #11 after Laguna Seca, pulling together a basically brand new car for Lime Rock. Their hard work would have the car running well all weekend, thwarted only by a fluke valve issue arose as soon as the race started, causing the #11 to lose power. Not giving up, the crew rebounded to get the car back in the race, albeit a few laps down, to give both drivers valuable seat time and points for what was Lee Carpentier’s home race in front of his friends and family.
In the #10, Dillon Machavern started in 28th place due to the qualifying sessions being cancelled because of rain. In what seemed like no time at all Machavern had the #10 in 11th position, having gone on a tear through the ST field in a fabulous driving display. For Murcott’s stint, strategy would become a factor, as to many people’s surprise, the race went 94 laps without a yellow, vastly changing fuel consumption predictions. Switching to a fuel-saving strategy late in the race allowed Dylon Murcott to bring the #10 home in 15th.
In the GS race, Machavern and Murcott stepped up to perform double duty in the #62 Mitchum Motorsports Camaro GS.R, and were running strong until contact going into Turn 1 resulted in a cut tire and broken wheel, putting them a few laps behind and out of contention for the race win, though Machavern put in a strong drive to bring the car home for points, crossing the finish line in a tight battle for position.
Dillon Machavern #10: “I had a really enjoyable weekend despite having to start at the back of the field in both the ST and the GS races. In the ST races, I was able to cut through the traffic pretty well and found myself in 11th position at the end of my stint which I couldn’t be happier about!
“In the GS race I was the finishing driver, and I ended up getting in the car already a few laps down due to contact with another car earlier causing a bent wheel and blown tire. As a result, my top priority became bringing the car home in one piece and enjoy the drive. Overall, while our placings could have been better, I’m really pleased with our performance on track!”
Dylon Murcott #10: “Practice went well early in the day on Friday for ST, and I was pretty bummed out that qualifying ended up being cancelled because we had a Top-10 car for sure. Dillon [Machavern] had a great opening stint moving up from 28th to 11th. My stint went well, and we were very surprised that we has so many green-flag laps . It worried us a little as I was a little short on fuel, but with 20 minutes to go we started a more fuel-saving strategy and were able to end up with a solid 15th place finish.
“The Camaro was a great experience, as it was both mine and my co-driver’s first GS race weekend. Even though we had only had around 15 laps in the car before this weekend, we both felt really comfortable. Qualifying getting rained out hurt us as it meant we would start from the back of the grid in 27th, but my opening stint went well enough and I had moved up through the field and was running 18th when we had some contact in Turn 1 which broke a wheel and cut the tire down. With this we lost a few laps before I was able to give the car over to Dillon. It certainly was a fun experience though getting to race the Mitchum Motorsports Camaro, and it’s something I hope to be able to do again!”
Chris Mitchum: “It was certainly a very difficult weekend, but I’m incredibly proud of both the team and the drivers. They never stopped working together, and the #10 car made up some huge ground with Dillon Machavern driving in the ST race. In the end, both the #10 BMW in ST and #62 Camaro in GS had last-lap battles for position which is all you can ask for; that they are in the fight until the very end. We are now shifting our attention and looking forward to a positive event at Kansas.“
The Grand Prix of Kansas will take place June 6-7, 2014 with the 150-minute Continental Tire Grand Prix race taking place on June 7th at 7:15 pm EST.