MacNeil and Bleekemolen Take ALMS GTC Lead to VIR



TAVARES, Fla, (Oct. 1, 2013) – Cooper MacNeil and Jeroen Bleekemolen head to Virginia International Raceway for the American Le Mans Series Oak Tree Grand Prix to run Oct. 3-5. The duo lead the GTC points in their No. 22 WeatherTech Racing Porsche.

MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill) and Bleekemolen (Monte Carlo) have been clinging to a less than 10 point lead in the all Porsche ALMS GTC series for two races. Current lead is at four. The team is returning to VIR where they won the all-Porsche class in 2012. The duo would like to come away with another win so they have some breathing room heading into the all-important ALMS season finale Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta just 10 days after VIR.

“We won at VIR last year and we would like to do the same this year,” MacNeil said. “I know how fast Jeroen is there because he was right with Leh on the last lap in 2012. I know we will be strong because the guys have been working really hard. The mechanical issue in the motor at COTA was extremely unfortunate because we would be really strong in the points right now. I really like the esses at VIR because of how fast we can drive the WeatherTech Porsche through them – hitting the rev limiter at the top of fifth gear, that’s an amazing feeling. Our goal this weekend is to put the WeatherTech Porsche on the pole and win.”

Bleekmolen had a good car and new it could have been a winning day.

“Because it’s so tight in the championship, it’s all about winning now,” Bleekemolen said. “We were really unlucky at COTA and the only way to make up for that is to try and win VIR. At the same time you have to stay out of trouble, because a bad result means you will miss the championship for sure. I love the fast esses at VIR, very challenging. The only tricky part about VIR is the traffic. If a prototype sticks it in there you can be in trouble. We really need all of the road there with the Porsche. I have only raced once at VIR last year. I lost out to Cooper, so joining him this year should help. I had a great run to second last year. We were close to winning, but had two slow pit stops under green losing more than 30 seconds. So second wasn’t too bad after all. We were within one second of the winners at the end.”

Alex Job, team owner, can’t afford to be too conservative.

“Cooper and Jeroen are going to VIR to win,” Job said. “At this point in the championship we can’t afford to be too cautious. Being too cautious can cause you to over think the situation and that is when mistakes can happen. Both our guys really drive well at VIR. We have fixed our mechanical issues which have plagued us the last couple of races and now we need to put a win together before Petit Le Mans.”

The television broadcast from VIR will air October 6 at 5:30 p.m. EDT on ESPN 2. Live streaming of the race will run October 5, starting at 2:00 p.m. EDT on, with live qualifying streaming on on October 4 starting at 3:35 p.m.

The American Le Mans Series will travel to Virginia International Raceway for the Oak Tree Grand Prix Oct. 3-5