Long Powers to Victory at Grand Prix-Mosport, Risi Competizione Snatches Second; Franchiti Wins IndyCar – Chicagoland
Lizards, Ferraris, Franchittis…oh my!
No surprise, but yet another badarse weekend for Oakley motorsports. O’s Flying Lizard driver Patrick Long powered his way to his fourth win of the season at Mobil 1 Grand Prix of Mosport. Not far behind his No. 45 Porsche was Oakley’s No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari, finishing second.
The intense race raged to a dramatic end with a major on-track accident involving a GTC Porsche, which totaled the race car and severely damaged a safety barrier.
Officials red-flagged the race to evaluate the damage to the barrier, ordering the cars into the pits and stopping the clock. A half hour later, the officials declared race end, displaying the checkered flag after a final parade lap. The No. 45, which had led much of the race, was in the lead at the time of the red flag and took the win. The No. 62 Risi Ferrari (Oakley) secured second.
“The start was wild: there was oil dry all down the front straight to Turn 1 and it made visibility tough,” said Long. “Starting just behind the LMPC cars was challenging: you have to decide if you’ll race with them and pass them while they are getting up to speed, or stay behind them until their tires come up. It was a coordinated back and forth through intense traffic. The traffic definitely added a very strategic element to the race that we don’t see on some of the longer circuits. It’s now down to one final race for the championship – we have the lead but we have to finish that final race and keep pushing to take every point we can.”
The Risi Competizione team put up a heck of a fight, but the final pit stop saw the team narrowly beaten out of the pits by Long’s Porsche, despite the Ferrari team’s decision to take just left side tires rather than a full set.
Dario Franchitti Zooms His Way to Victory at Indy 300 – Chicagoland
While the Big O was busy dominating the American Le Mans stop, Oakley driver Dario Franchitti tallied his third IndyCar win this year at Chicagoland Speedway.
It all came down to stops. 30 laps remained when the field turned to the pits for fuel and tires – but Franchitti sped out of the pits with the lead after taking fuel only. Franchitti ran 62 laps on his final set of wheels, crossing the finish line 0.0423 of a second ahead of Dan Wheldon.
“That last stop was the key to this race,” said Franchitti. “Chris Simmons, turns out he was the one that made the call. We had a lot of faith in the Firestone tires. He said leave the tires on and got us out front.”
Franchitti’s 26th IndyCar victory shoots him to 11th on the all time victory list (tied with Roger Ward) and moves him to within 23 points of Will Power, who finished 16th. Power is currently in the lead for a championship.
“This one feels really special for some reason — maybe because we pulled it out the way we did,” he said.
Congratulations to all of our Oakley Motorsports athletes that kicked arse and took names this past weekend!