Targeting another IMSA championship and third win of the season with Acura GTP
Braselton, Ga. (9 October 2023) – Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) with Curb-Agajanian returns to Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta for the Motul Petit Le Mans with the same goal as last year – to bookend the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with victories in two of its biggest endurance races.
Four-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves will rejoin season regulars Tom Blomqvist and Colin Braun in the No. 60 Acura ARX-06 for the 10-hour race on Saturday. Last year, Blomqvist and Castroneves were joined by Oliver Jarvis at the finale, scoring a dramatic victory to secure the final DPi championship – and MSR’s third IMSA championship title.
With over 350 sports car starts, MSR heads into the IMSA season finale with two season wins to its credit and enters the weekend sixth in the standings, 127 points in arrears and with a mathematical chance of winning the championship title.
Last year, MSR came to Petit Le Mans trailing the class leader by 19 points after scoring six-consecutive runner-up finishes. Blomqvist captured the pole to narrow the gap to 14 points, with the team running a consistent, perfectly executed race. Running second to the title leaders early in the final hour, Blomqvist took the lead on his final pit stop. From there MSR wrapped up the victory and the title.
MSR brings a strong legacy to Road Atlanta. The team won overall in the 2016 Petit Le Mans, and finished second in GTD in the 2018 event. In addition, MSR won a six-hour race in GTD at the circuit in Covid-plagued 2020. In 2021, the team led 112 laps overall, but sustained undercarriage damage when Castroneves ran over debris with 45 minutes remaining. MSR lost 10 laps for repairs and finished sixth.
Braun is still looking for his first Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta triumph, scoring three runner-up finishes in 11 races at the circuit. He took second in LMP2 in the two 2020 events. Blomqvist finished third in GTLM in 2019, his lone attempt at Petit Le Mans prior to last year’s victory with MSR.
Castroneves is a seven-time Petit Le Mans competitor, winning the 2008 race in the P2 class in addition to last year’s triumph. In IMSA races at Road Atlanta, he won the 2020 six-hour race from the pole and he has three podiums in Petit Le Mans, second in 2020 and third in both 2017 and 2019.
The 26th edition of the Motul Petit Le Mans is set to take the green flag at 11:40 a.m. ET on Saturday October 14th. Flag-to-flag coverage of the race will be streamed live on Peacock, with USA Network television coverage beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET. The event will also be broadcast live on SiriusXM channel 207.
Meyer Shank Racing Driver Quotes:
“Final race of the season and it feels like it’s come around so fast. This race is probably my second favorite race of the year, behind Daytona. I love this event, the fans, the track, driving into the night – it’s such a cool race. Last year we won the thing and the goal is to be back-to-back winners. We had a solid test there a few weeks back. I think it’s going to be super close, it seemed like the competition was tightly matched. But I am really, really motivated and everyone on the team is hoping to end the season on a high note and go for back-to-back wins at Petit Le Mans.”
“I’m definitely excited to get going at Road Atlanta. We had a good test there a couple of weeks ago and I think we’re in a good position coming into the race. Obviously it’s a unique spot where we have nothing to lose, so I think for us we’re all focused on trying to win the race and finish this thing off strong. This race is always nuts. All the GTP cars from the test were right on the limit in a lot of spots. There’s just so many places that are right on the limit on a normal lap when you’re by yourself, let alone when you throw all those cars in. I think it’s going to make for a super exciting race from the fan’s standpoint, but probably a lot of gray hairs for all of us on the pit stand and in the driver’s seat!”