Two in a Row as Stevenson Motorsports Wins With Camaro Z/28.R Again


No. 9 Camaro of Matt Bell and Andy Lally take first win of 2014 season as IMSA races north of the border

679caa3b-e420-42da-81f9-f4e6fa8e29b5Bowmanville, Ontario (13 July 2014) – Just two weeks after the No. 6 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro Z/28.R raced into victory lane at Watkins Glen International, the brother No. 9 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro Z/28.R took a big win at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on Saturday with drivers Matt Bell and Andy Lally scoring their first IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge win of the season together.

It was a strong race performance for both Stevenson Motorsports entries, as the stablemate No. 6 Stevenson Motorsports Z/28.R started from pole and led the first 32 laps before coming home in fifth. The team, which has long proudly carried the Red, White, and Blue on the team cars, has shown remarkable success when racing internationally. That impressive tally of Stevenson Motorsports international victories through the years includes multiple GRAND-AM Rolex Series GT Class wins at the Circuit Gilles Villenueve in Montreal as well as south of the border with wins in Mexico City.

The two machines opened the Canadian race first and third in the order, with Davis leading the pack into turn one. Bell made his own move to take second on the first lap as the two ran 1-2 for the first 50 minutes of the race.

Bell made the first move, taking to the pits on lap 32 to turn the car over to Lally, who returned to the field 12th in the order. Expecting to pit the No. 6 on the following lap, the two team cars had their strategy and fortunes bifurcated with a yellow flag on lap 33, forcing Davis to wait behind the pace car before getting the chance to turn the car over to Liddell, losing track position in the process.

Restarting in second as the green flew on lap 40, Lally kept the pressure on the championship-leading BMW before taking the lead on lap 65 as a second round of pit stops cycled through. He then withstood a fraught 40 minutes of pressure and a pair of restarts, but was able to hold on to take the victory.

“It is a very happy day for the team!” said Stevenson Motorsports team manager Mike Johnson on Stevenson’s third win of the 2014 season.  “You always want both of your cars to get a victory in a year because everyone works so hard on both cars. It’s a one-team effort back at the shop. The No. 6 would have been right there, might have been first or second but we missed the pit in by five feet. And it happens unfortunately when yellows come out. But I’m really happy for the 9 car guys; they more than deserved it. And happy for the 6 guys too; to come back to fifth place. We gained a few points on the No. 13 Porsche, but lost a few to the No. 46 BMW but it’s a good result and a very happy day.”

Stevenson Motorsports will return to IMSA race action at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway July 25th. The team secured the Patron Endurance Championship at the track last year in Rolex GT competition, and will look to add a new chapter of accomplishment at the track in two weeks’ time.

Stevenson Motorsports Canadian Tire Motorsport Park Driver Comments:

Andy Lally, No. 9 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro Z/28.R
“In practice, we weren’t sure where we were on ultimate pace but we were feeling like when the tires went off, we still had a stable platform. That’s huge here because of all the elevation changes. Keeping that platform right over the crest of the hills and being able to go to power. We weren’t at the very top of the time charts but we were close and I knew that on a long run we had something.

“Those restarts at the end, they were definitely stressful. I knew I had some really good guys behind us with Maxwell and Johnson. Maxwell has a ton of time here – he’s Mr. Mosport, so I knew he’d have some tricks up his sleeve and I wanted to get a good clean couple of restarts and we were able to get through Turn 1 really well and get that gap and just keep it.”

Matt Bell, No. 9  Stevenson Motorsports Camaro Z/28.R
“We made all the right decisions as far as set up. I was very conservative on my tire. There were a couple little oversteer moments when I went a little bit too deep. But that’s how it works when working with a track that we’ve pretty much never seen.  But the Stevenson guys did an awesome job setting this thing up, getting it to put the power down even when it is greasy. It’s very predictable, very easy to control. I did my job, the engineers did their job, the crew – with their pitstops, they beat the yellow which was awesome.

Robin Liddell, No. 6 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro Z/28.R
“The key to the race was that first yellow. Once that yellow came out we were (in trouble). This car is good, it’s well balanced, it’s fast over a lap but it’s not raceable due to the lack of top speed. So we got behind a few cars due to that. I really worked hard to get by those guys and I think we did the best we could given the bad luck of the unfortunate situation we had at the beginning. It’s just unfortunate that we were leading the race and we didn’t have the opportunity to dive in (to the pits). Andrew drove a great opening stint and the guys did a super job.

“I’m really happy for the 9 guys to get a win. Obviously, those guys have worked just as hard as we have and we’ve managed to notch up two wins so for them to get the win, it evens things out a bit which is pretty cool. The 01 car behind us and the 46 ahead were faster on four tires so ultimately I was doing the best I could on two tires. In the dirty air the car gets super hot and you lose power so we weren’t able to attack anybody ahead of us. I think Andy up front was able to stay ahead and keep max power but we struggled for that reason.”

Andrew Davis, No. 6 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro Z/28.R
“It was just unfortunate, that yellow fell at the worst possible time for us. We had the race under control and I was very pleased with the performance of our Camaro Z/28.R. The guys gave me a great car.I was really managing the pace and saving fuel a little bit which ended up kind of catching us out because I didn’t have to come in for fuel yet and I had stretched a bit of a lead so we were going to do one more lap and the timing of the yellow just hurt us because then we got hung out to dry. Still very proud of the crew and very happy for the team. Another victory for Stevenson Motorsports, so that’s great. A good and bad day for us as far as points go but we’re definitely still in this for the championship fight. Really happy for the team and Chevy and Pratt & Miller and for Stevenson Motorsports.”