All posts in “CORE autosport”

CORE Returns to GRC Action in Atlantic City

 ROCK HILL, S.C. (Aug. 10, 2017) – After a nearly two-month absence from the Red Bull Global Rallycross series, CORE autosport is back with Jon Bennett and Colin Braun for the latest doubleheader event in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

 

CORE’s last GRC event was June 17 -18 in Ottawa, Canada. Due to a conflict with its IMSA schedule, the team missed the July 9 event at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indiana. Missing an event has effectively taken Bennett and Braun out of GRC Lites title contention, but both drivers still have their eye on scoring their first GRC wins.

 

Atlantic City is the first return event of the 2017 GRC season, although the track differs greatly from last year. The races still takes place at Bader Field (a.k.a. Atlantic City Municipal Airport), but the layout has been shortened from 1.102 miles, to 0.902-mile. The Joker Lap has also been shortened and no longer bypasses the dirt section and the course will be run counterclockwise instead of clockwise as it was last year.

 

The event, minutes away from the Atlantic City Boardwalk, has also been expanded to a two-day event.

 

Coming off their best GT Daytona finish yet in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship (seventh at Road America), Bennett and Braun are eager to jump back into their No. 54 and No. 56 GRC Lites entries and catch some air!

 

The GRC Lites final in Atlantic City will take place at 4:50pm ET on Saturday, August 12, and at 4:45pm on Sunday, August 13. Both finals will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network, Wednesday, August 23, at 5pm ET.

 

 

 

“I’m looking forward to our next GRC round. It’s massively different from our racing in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Colin and I always enjoy the GRC weekends. Colin has been really competitive, and I have had success as well. I hope we can take our momentum from our successful finish at Road America to Atlantic City.

 

“Atlantic City is an exciting town. For once, we’re heading back to a track that will look somewhat similar to a track from last year, which will be helpful. Being at an abandoned airstrip will give the cars some room to stretch their legs.”

– JON BENNETT

 

 

“I’m looking forward to hopping in a GRC car. It’s been a while. We missed the event at Indianapolis. I think it’s actually helpful for Jon and I to skip an event and come back at it fresh. It helps us to avoid going at it with the same approach. We’ll go in there and drive the best we can and figure it out as we go. The guys have had a good amount of time in the shop to get the cars shined up and ready to go. I’m excited to go to Atlanta City, I think we’ll have a good run there.”

– COLIN BRAUN

CORE Wants to Continue Canadian Win Streak

ROCK HILL, S.C. (July 6, 2017) – It’s only been a few short days since the checkered flag fell at Watkins Glen International, but CORE autosport is eager to return to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP), site of its most recent IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship victory.

 

CTMP is one of CORE’s most successful tracks. The team has scored four Prototype Challenge victories at the circuit formerly known as Mosport, including the last two seasons (2015 – 2016). In fact, CORE has never finished off the podium at CTMP.

 

Continuing such a streak will be no easy task this weekend. Now running a Porsche 911 GT3 R in the GT Daytona category, drivers Jon Bennett and Colin Braun are up against a field of 14 incredibly diverse and competitive cars.

 

 

Noteworthy

  • CORE autosport has won the PC class at CTMP in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2016.
  • Braun has earned the PC pole at CTMP twice: 2012 and 2016.
  • Bennett raced in the Porsche GT3 Cup races at CTMP in 2013 and finished second in the Masters Class.
  • CORE is missing its first GRC race of 2017 because of the conflict with CTMP this weekend.

 

 

“Colin and I always look forward to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. It’s a track that we’ve had success at in the past and it’s just a really fast, flowing track that requires a lot of commitment and confidence. It will be interesting to attack its fast corners in the Porsche instead of the PC car that we’ve brought there since 2011. We won’t have the same kind of downforce as we had with the PC car, so it will be about finding the most mechanical grip that we can.

 

“It’s a shame to be missing our first GRC event of the season, but it will be good for Colin and I to have back-to-back races in the Porsche. It’s only been a few days since Watkins Glen, so the muscle memory and the feel for what the car wants is still in the forefront of our minds.”
– JON BENNETT

 

“It’s good to have back-to-back races. We’re fortunate enough that we didn’t tear our car up, so we’re able to polish on it and make it a little better and take it to Canada. I think it’s good for everyone that we get to work some back-to-back weekends. We get to carry some momentum forward. For Jon and I specifically, we’re not jumping into something different, like the GRC cars, between IMSA events. I think for us it’s nice that we can carry that momentum into the next one. Hopefully that helps us move the bar forward at Mosport.

 

“We’ve had a lot of success at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, but PC racing was a different game. We’re still learning this car and figuring it out as a group. We do our best every weekend and we’re improving. We’re learning a lot about this kind of racing and what this car needs. I think we’ll have a decent result at Mosport. This kind of racing is up and down with the way the cars are and the balance of performance. We race wheel-to-wheel. We beat the Acura at the Circuit of the Americas, and then they won the last two races. It just goes to show how the cycle of speed and tracks favor a car. We’re looking forward to Mosport and hoping that it will be a great track for the Porsche.”
– COLIN BRAUN

CORE is Bringing the Heat to Texas

ROCK HILL, S.C. (May 2, 2017) – Days after competing in the opening round of the Red Bull Global Rallycross GRC Lites Championship, CORE autosport is back on the road for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Drivers Jon Bennett and Colin Braun will go from dirt and air time to the immaculate Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

 

CORE has plenty of reasons to look forward to COTA: it’s finished on the podium there in all of its visits with the Prototype Challenge car, including a win in 2015. This year, however, the team takes its GTD Porsche 911 GT3 R for its first crack at the 3.4-mile, 20-turn road course, which hosts the Formula 1 US Grand Prix in October.

 

Traditionally, IMSA has raced at COTA in September, but this year sees the first time the race is held in the spring. Though temperatures are not expected to be as brutal as September, COTA will still be one of the hottest races on the calendar.

 

 

Noteworthy:

  • Thursday, May 5 is Jon Bennett’s birthday.
  • Bennett and Colin Braun’s PC win at COTA in 2015 sealed its fifth-straight PC Championship.
  • CORE finished second in PC at COTA in 2014 (Bennett & Braun) and third in 2013 (Bennett and Tom Kimber-Smith).
  • CORE did not take part in last year’s race at COTA.
  • Braun grew up in Ovalo, Texas, 3.5 hours from Austin.

 

 

 

“We’re looking to put together our first mistake-free event of the season. We’ve had several snafus that hurt our performance over the course of the season. We’re looking forward to what our performance will be when we can accomplish a typical CORE weekend, which is normally mistake-free.

 

“We’re pretty well suited for our first hot race of the season. We have good systems to keep the driver cool. More importantly, in some ways, COTA is our first traditional road circuit with the Porsche. It’s not an oval converted for road racing, it’s not an old airport, and it’s not a street course. We’re looking forward to getting the Porsche onto a more conventional road circuit.

 

“I like COTA because it’s used for Formula 1, so it has generous amounts of runoff and I like to take risks and I think in the process learn the limits of the race car without putting the equipment in jeopardy. I’m looking forward to that aspect of COTA; it allows you to hang the car out on the edge without big mechanical risks.”
– JON BENNETT

 

 

 

 

“COTA is a pretty unique place. It’s a very exciting, cool track, since it’s a Formula 1 track. It’s got a lot of first-gear hairpins, it’s got an interesting section of Esses and a really long right-hand corner. It has a lot of unique things that mix together for a track that doesn’t have a lot of flow, but certainly presents a lot of challenges and is fun in that aspect.

 

“At a place like COTA, with the surface that they have, tire wear isn’t too big of a concern. For us, it’s going to be different since we’re going earlier in the year. We’re used to seeing really high track temperatures and high ambient temps. If we were going back in the PC car, we’d probably take a different approach than previous years, but we’re going in a car that we’ve never run there, so we don’t know any better.

 

“If you look on paper at the performance Mercedes has had over the first three races, those would have to be the cars to beat. They’ve had good pace and been very dominant. Those were a completely different set of tracks though and COTA is going to be interesting one. It has very long straightaways and very long braking zones. It has a lot of places where putting the power down is going to be important and I think those areas are where the Porsche is going to be very strong.

 

“Jon and I have both had success at COTA and locked up PC championships there, so I feel like we have a lot of confidence about that circuit. We’re learning every time we go racing with this car. This is the fourth different race track we’ve been to now, so we’re leaps and bounds ahead of where we were. Jon and the whole team have done an amazing job, building on everything through the season, so I’m excited to get things kicked off at COTA.”
– COLIN BRAUN

 

 

Advance Auto Parts Sportscar Showdown | May 4 – 6

Track Length: 3.4 miles, 20 turns

Race Length: 2 hours, 40 minutes

 

SCHEDULE (All times Eastern)

Thursday, May 4

10:45am – 11:45am: Practice #1 (All Classes)

3:55pm – 4:55pm: Practice #2 (All Classes)

 

Friday, May 5

9:55am – 10:55am: Practice #3 (All Classes)

1:05pm – 1:20pm: Qualifying (GTD Class)

 

Saturday, May 6

9:40am – 10:00am: Warm Up (All Classes)

11:45am – 12:30pm: Driver Autograph Session

2:35pm – 5:15pm: Advance Auto Parts Sportscar Showdown

 

TV SCHEDULE (All times Eastern)

LIVE Qualifying:

Friday, May 5

12:55pm – 2:35pm: IMSA.com

Race U.S.:

Saturday, May 6

7:00pm – 10:00pm: FS1

LIVE Race International:

2:35pm – 5:15pm: IMSA.com

 

LIVE In-Car Cameras & Commentary:

IMSA.com

CORE Adds Jonsson, Long to Rolex 24 Lineup

ROCK HILL, S.C. (Dec. 13, 2016) – CORE autosport has completed its driver lineup for the 2017 Rolex 24 at Daytona. Patrick Long and Nic Jonsson will join Jon Bennett and Colin Braun in the No. 54 Porsche 911 GT3 R for the team’s first attempt at the 24-hour spectacle in the IMSA Weathertech SportsCar Championship’s GT Daytona category.

Long is no stranger to CORE autosport, having partnered with both Braun and Tom Kimber-Smith in a Porsche 911 GT3 RSR for CORE’s 2013 GT effort in the American Le Mans Series. Porsche’s only American factory driver brings with him 14 years of Porsche experience, including a victory and three podiums at the Rolex 24.

For all Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup races (Daytona, Sebring, Watkins Glen, Petit Le Mans), Jonsson will serve as CORE’s third driver. Jonsson has nearly two decades of professional sports car racing under his belt. His resume includes the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, Rolex Sports Car Series, American Le Mans Series and World Endurance Championship. The Swede has finished on the podium at the 24 Hours of Le Mans three times and earned class victories at Sebring and Petit Le Mans.

Long and Jonsson will get their first seat time in the No. 54 Porsche 911 GT3 R at the Roar Before the 24, January 6 -8. It will be the final test before the 2017 race season kicks off in earnest with the Rolex 24 at Daytona, January 26 – 29.

 

16-CORE-JB-HeadshotWJON BENNETT
No. 54 CORE AUTOSPORT PORSCHE 911 GT3 R

“The first race of the 2017 season with our GTD Porsche 911 GT3 R is going to be super competitive. I’m very fortunate to share the car all season with Colin, who I’ve spent a lot of time with and he knows how to win 24-hour races. Now, to have Pat Long and Nic Jonsson added to our lineup, I feel fortunate to be sharing the car with fast drivers with endurance backgrounds. Pat Long, obviously has extensive experience in our car. Although I don’t know Nic very well, Colin has praised his abilities and I look forward to getting to know him better.”

 

 

16-CORE-CB-HeadshotCOLIN BRAUN
No.
54 CORE AUTOSPORT PORSCHE 911 GT3 R

“I’m excited to have a guy that knows Porsches like Pat does with us. To have someone that knows the car and has so much Rolex 24 experience will be a great asset.

“Driving with Nic again will be great. I’ve known him for a long time and learned a lot from him back when I was driving for Krohn. Much like Pat, he’s done this race a lot and he knows GT3 cars. I think our lineup is a great one. It’s probably a sleeper lineup, because we don’t have any big IndyCar or F1 names, but I think it’s as good as it gets when it comes to sportscar racing.”

 

 

16-core-nj-headshotNIC JONSSON
No. 54 CORE AUTOSPORT PORSCHE 911 GT3 R

“I’m very excited to have the opportunity to be a part of CORE autosport for the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup in their new Porsche GT3 car. I’m very thankful to both Team Manager Morgan Brady and Team Owner Jon Bennett for having the faith in me to offer this opportunity. CORE has shown ever since they came in to IMSA that they are one of the absolute top teams, winning races and championships in the very competitive Prototype Challenge category. To join an already very successful organization with one of the most iconic motorsports brands in Porsche and with such strong teammates in Jon, Colin and Pat makes me very excited.”

 

 

16-core-pl-headshotPATRICK LONG
No.
54 CORE AUTOSPORT PORSCHE 911 GT3 R

“It’s great to be back with CORE autosport. I feel we have a special past together and rejoining them for their first race in the GT3R has a special connection to the first time we rolled out as a team in the 911 RSR at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in 2013.

“There is some heavy competition in this year’s GTD class, but I have huge respect and confidence in the program Jon Bennett and Morgan Brady have put together and I know there will be no punches pulled leading up to the start of this year’s Rolex 24.”

CORE Heads to GRC Seattle with New Driver

ROCK HILL, S.C. (Sept. 14, 2016) – CORE autosport will participate in the latest Red Bull Global Rallycross round in Seattle with an adjustment to its driver lineup. Scott Anderson will join Jon Bennett in the team’s pair of GRC Lites cars at Evergreen Raceway.

 

For its fourth GRC Lites event, CORE welcomes rookie Scott Anderson to the team. The 26 year-old is making his GRC debut, but comes into the series with a strong open-wheel background. Since 2011 he has raced in the Skip Barber National Championship, USF2000, Pro Mazda Championship and Indy Lights.

 

Bennett will continue to drive the No. 54 in Seattle. Anderson has signed on to drive the No. 56 car at Seattle and the finale in Los Angeles.

 

Similar to the Daytona International Speedway layout, the 0.791-mile Seattle course incorporates the banked oval of Evergreen Speedway as well as the dirt infield. Its Joker Lap allows drivers to skip half of the dirt section, including the jump.

 

The GRC Lites race from Seattle will be shown on Red Bull TV Sunday, Sept. 18 at 2pm ET. The race will air on NBC Sports Network, Thursday, Sept. 22, at 5:30pm ET.

 

 

16-CORE-JB-HeadshotGRC“One of the challenges of a GRC event is the uniqueness of each circuit. Each circuit requires strategic thinking to unlock the speed. Predicting the grip level and speed on a section of purpose-built racing surface should be familiar for us.

 

“It is difficult to determine how much previous experience at our recent GRC rounds will help us in Seattle. The course map gives us an idea of what is ahead, but walking the final course is the key to understanding the circuit.  Additionally, there are often small changes to the course to accommodate nuances of the actual venue.

 

“Considering this will be my fourth GRC event, making The Final is an important goal for me.  While I respect the quality of the GRC Lites field, I believe a podium finish in my inaugural season is achievable.”

 

 

16-core-grc-mailchimp-anderson

“I’ve wanted to try out some kind of rally racing since I first started racing. GRC seems like a perfect mix of both the side-by-side racing I’m used to and the unpredictable, extreme elements that got me interested in rally in the first place. I think GRC is going to be the next big series.

 

“I found CORE through my sponsor Hull & Knarr. We had been looking at getting into GRC and knew CORE was getting involved. Hull & Knarr was able to provide their services to both CORE and their partners, so it’s a natural fit.

 

“Besides sliding around in the snow in my street car, I have basically no rally experience. I just finished my second day of testing in the GRC lites car, so I think that should be enough to know what I’m doing during the race weekend, but there’s plenty to learn still.

 

“I’d like to thank Hull & Knarr for their huge support and making this happen and Evil Bikes for their support as well. I think they have a big future in the GRC paddock, it’s not even the race weekend yet and I’m getting people telling me how cool it is to have them in GRC.”
– Scott Anderson

CORE Moves to GTD With Porsche in 2017

ROCK HILL, S.C. (Sept. 12, 2016) – Five-time IMSA Prototype Challenge Champions CORE autosport will move to the GT Daytona class for the 2017 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with a Porsche 911 GT3 R.

 

Knowing the PC class will be eliminated from the WeatherTech Championship in 2018, CORE evaluated multiple options for the future of its sports car program. Ultimately, the team decided that a switch to the GTD class in a Porsche 911 GT3 R made the most sense.

 

The switch from PC to GTD means CORE will continue to compete in a pro-am class. The choice of Porsche was a natural fit considering CORE’s history of running a customer Porsche entry in 2013, team owner/driver Jon Bennett’s experience in the 2013 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge, and CORE’s multi-year partnership with Porsche to run the German marque’s factory GTLM program.

 

“The move to GTD evolved pretty naturally,” Bennett said. “We knew we wanted to compete at a pro-am level. The competition in GTD is incredible and we’ve had a relationship with Porsche for four years now, so the 911 GT3 R stood out as a smart choice. As a Porsche owner myself, I’m really excited about the opportunity to team up with Colin Braun and race one.”

 

CORE has already begun its preparations for its 2017 GTD debut, and as a result it has elected to withdraw its No. 54 Flex-Box/Composite Resources ORECA FLM09 from the remaining IMSA rounds at Circuit of the Americas and Road Atlanta.

 

“At CORE, we place a high value on preparation, and I don’t think we can go into 2017 as prepared as we need to be if we’re distracted by the final two PC rounds,” CORE autosport COO Morgan Brady said. “The first IMSA-sanctioned test at Daytona is only two months away and the 2017 season kicks off with a 24-hour race; we can’t be tying up loose ends when the green flag drops.”

 

CORE’s PC program concludes with five-straight team titles (2011 – 2015), four driver titles (2011, 2012, 2014, 2015), 16 pole positions and 20 class wins. The team is currently third in the 2016 PC Team points. Bennett and Braun are fourth in the PC Driver points.

 

Without a PC entry at Circuit of the Americas, Bennett will travel to Seattle, Washington, this weekend to compete in the latest Red Bull Global Rallycross event at Evergreen Speedway.

CORE Takes GRC Lites to Atlantic City

ROCK HILL, S.C. (Aug. 23, 2016) – Atlantic City, New Jersey awaits CORE autosport for the latest round of the Red Bull Global Rallycross season. For the third time this year, drivers Jon Bennett and Colin Braun will compete in the GRC Lites class.

 

So far CORE’s GRC program has taken on the infield of Daytona International Speedway and the parking lot of RFK Stadium, but this weekend, the two-car team will face the coastline runways of Bader Field, aka Atlantic City Municipal Airport. At 1.102 miles, the 10-turn course is the longest on the 2016 GRC calendar.

 

After its second-ever GRC event, Bennett, Braun and team learned how much could change from course to course. With that lesson in mind, they know to carefully study not just the layout of the track, but also the weight of the dirt and the material underneath it.

 

“We are really enjoying being a part of the series and how helpful the GRC paddock is,” CORE GRC Program Manager Brian Colangelo said. “We have experienced a warm welcome from everyone. With each event, we’re eager to apply what we’ve learned at the previous round. We are achieving our goals every step of the way and I am proud of everything this team has accomplished in such a short span of time.”

 

This weekend CORE welcomes a new sponsor to its GRC program: Scoot-E-Bike™. Bennett and Braun will be able to get around the event grounds on these compact electric scooters with a top speed of 20 mph. The on-board charger can plug into any standard wall outlet and provides a range of up to 30 miles per charge. It will be an invaluable mode of transportation every race weekend.

 

The GRC Lites Final will be streamed live on Red Bull TV, Sunday, August 28, at 3:30pm ET. A full broadcast will air on NBC Sports Network, Thursday, Sept. 1, at 5:30pm ET.

 

 

 

16-CORE-JB-HeadshotGRC“Colin and I are both enjoying this new challenge of GRC. It’s been great to meet new and talented competitors. I have also enjoyed learning to adapt our cars and my driving style to a constantly changing surface.”

 

“With two GRC events under our belts, we have learned there’s much more to the track walk than studying the racing line. It’s important to study the make-up and composition of the dirt surface and how it will react to being watered down. Looking for good passing areas is another important aspect of learning these new circuits. Our new Scoot-E-Bikes will make it easy to get around the venue and observe other drivers. I’m really excited about having a quick and rechargeable way of getting around at these events!”

 

“In preparing for Atlantic City, I now have some good notes from our previous events to review and better understand the feel of our GRC Lites car and how it’s affected by changing conditions.”
– Jon Bennett

 

 

16-CORE-CB-HeadshotGRC“I’m enjoying the new challenge and I’ve been learning a lot of new things. There are a lot of things to learn, not just about making the car fast, but about how the event works and making everything flow the right way. It reminds me a lot of when I transitioned from sportscars to NASCAR. There were so many things to learn.

 

“I think we’ve learned that on our track walk, instead of looking at it in a two-dimensional way, there’s a third dimension, which is: what kind of dirt is being used, how is it going to change and what’s under it. At Daytona, we had dirt on dirt. At Washington D.C., we had dirt on asphalt, which pretty quickly would get pushed aside and you’d have spots of asphalt. I think there’s a lot more in the dirt section for us to study and understand.

 

“We definitely have the pace to be competitive, so for me, the biggest thing I’m working on is putting the whole weekend together. I want two clean practice sessions that lead into a good qualifying and then having good starts in the heats to put myself in a position to be in the first row or two for the final. These races are a lot about track position and getting through the first two corners. Once you fall a little bit behind it’s really hard to catch up.”
– Colin Braun

CORE Continues on GRC Learning Curve

WASHINGTON D.C. (July 31, 2016) – CORE autosport’s Red Bull Global Rallycross journey continued this weekend at RFK Stadium in Washington D.C. Drivers Jon Bennett and Colin Braun showed strong pace in their second-ever GRC event, but their final results did not illustrate the big improvements made by the team.

With one GRC event under its belt, CORE autosport had a better understanding of what to expect at RFK Stadium. But, by GRC’s very nature, two important elements change with each track: the location of the Joker Lap and the surface texture (both permanent and dirt). The team quickly realized on the track walk that D.C.’s dirt was quite a bit sandier than the dirt they raced on in Daytona.

After a strong showing in practice where Braun even topped the timing screens for a bit, qualifying ended with Braun fifth and Bennett 10th. Neither Braun nor Bennett were able to crack the top three in the heat races to advance to the main, which meant both drivers would have to fight their way through the last chance qualifier (LCQ).

Braun quickly took the lead in the LCQ, but was hit hard by another car. The hit broke the car’s steering and ended Braun’s day in the No. 56. Bennett had better luck and captured the final transfer spot to take up the 10th position on the grid for the final. There, he would advance one spot to finish ninth in the No. 54.

The final result belied the major strides made by the team in their rookie GRC season. As CORE continues to make progress with its GRC program, it looks forward the next rallycross event in Atlantic City, August 28.

The GRC Lites race from Washington D.C. will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network, Thursday, August 25, at 5:30pm ET.

 

16-CORE-JB-HeadshotGRC“The good news for GRC D.C. was we’re beginning to get used to the flow of the event; where to be and when to be there. It sounds small, but it does affect you mentally and your performance. Beyond that, we’re beginning to understand the characteristics and personalities of the competition each weekend. Unfortunately, we don’t have the results to reflect that we had a very positive weekend in Washington.
 
“The last chance qualifier was interesting. On the grid it began to rain, which is something I enjoy. It’s a bit of an equalizer. I was optimistic when it began to rain. Colin was on his way to winning that race, but unfortunately he was the victim of someone else’s mistake, which broke the steering and ended his chances for the final. I was able to move to the final by finishing fourth in the LCQ.
 
“I started 10th in the final and it was a good opportunity for me to learn how to be competitive. In the final, you’re racing against the best drivers in our field. It was a good seminar for me when it comes to sharpening my competitiveness. I was able to move up a position to P9 and gained a lot of experience.
 
“I think we’re building a toolbox for future races and I think each race will help CORE’s program get stronger and stronger. I think if we can get both cars in the final and one car on the podium at the next one, that’d be a good finish for us. Hopefully our experience builds as we go to Atlantic City and Los Angeles. I suspect we’ll begin to move up to the top of the results sheet.
 
“One of the coolest things that’s happening is the brand awareness of CORE. On more than one occasion people have commented that ‘we’re happy to see you guys here after all the success in sportscars.’ It’s cool to see our business grow. I think growing outside the IMSA paddock adds more legitimacy to how good we are at what we do.”
– Jon Bennett

 

16-CORE-CB-HeadshotGRC“The track itself was a nice layout when you’re driving by yourself, but was nearly impossible to pass on. It was really important to qualify well and get a good start. It was so easy to get trapped behind a slower car. There was maybe one semi-passing opportunity around the whole place. The track was fun and technical by yourself, which I think is why we were so quick during practice.
 
“I felt like all our procedures and processes are getting better and our understanding of how the weekend flows. With this only being our second race, we’re still learning a ton. We’ve come to a new venue and it’s our first time seeing what the differences can be in where the Joker Lap is and the texture of the dirt. It was sandier here than it was at Daytona. On one hand it was nice to go to the second race, because we knew what to expect, but on the other hand, we learned that a lot of things can change from race to race.
 
“I was leading the LCQ and then the person I passed decided to riffle it in there in the dirt section, as it was raining, and got into the water and slammed into me. The hit was so hard it broke the steering shaft. It’s a big disappointment, because we were super fast in the first practice and decent in the second one. The CORE guys did an awesome job giving me a fast car and our results on paper don’t really show the huge amounts of progress we’re making.”
– Colin Braun

CORE Ready for Sophomore GRC Event

ROCK HILL, S.C. (July 26, 2016) – After securing a podium finish in its Red Bull Global Rallycross debut last month, CORE autosport gained valuable insight into the series that will help keep the podium finishes coming. As a result, drivers Jon Bennett and Colin Braun are eager to take on their second GRC event this weekend at RFK Stadium in Washington D.C.

 

Even beyond the dirt and jumps, GRC Lites is a totally different world compared to CORE’s usual sportscar racing. Instead of qualifying, where the course is open to all drivers attempting to set their fastest lap time, GRC features two heat races, where drivers fight to finish in the top three and earn a spot on the grid for the main. All drivers finishing outside the top three go to a last-chance qualifier (LCQ) to battle for the final four spots on the grid.

 

Instead of a two-hour and 40-minute race, GRC Lites main events are only 10 laps and all races begin with a standing start. In each race, every driver must complete one “joker lap,” which is a deviation from the main course that could either be slower or faster than the main course depending on the event setup. Deciding when to take the “joker lap” is a key strategic decision, much like when to make a pit stop in sportscar racing.

 

Now that CORE has one full GRC event under its belt, the team has a better understanding of how to utilize track time and employ the best race strategies. Bennett, Braun and team are looking forward to measured improvement at this weekend’s Washington D.C. event.

 

The GRC Lites main event is streamed live on Red Bull TV, Saturday, July 30, at 2:30pm ET. A full recap show will air on NBC Sports Network, Thursday, August 25, at 5:30pm ET.

 

 

16-CORE-JB-HeadshotGRC“We have our first event under our belt and we understand the way the event flows and a little bit about our competitors and the feel of a GRC weekend. I think Colin and I are really looking forward to going to Washington D.C. and focus more on our actual racing and not just on understanding how the event works and the mechanics of going GRC racing. Plus, we both know how to properly jump a car now, so that chapter’s been written! We’re looking forward to settling into a groove and doing our homework on how to make the cars faster and be more competitive.

 

There are some aspects of GRC racing that are new to us: one being the standing starts and two being the jumps. I think we have some data from the cars now that we’re able to analyze and figure out what kind of start seems to be better. In terms of the jumps, we can figure out if we’re better with a fast and long jump or a slower and shorter jump, in terms of overall lap time. Those are all things we didn’t have any information on prior to Daytona and we are armed with going to Washington. We’re looking forward to a new level of competitiveness and watching that grow as our abbreviated GRC season continues.”
– Jon Bennett

 

 

16-CORE-CB-HeadshotGRC“I’m really looking forward to getting back in the GRC car. It’s so much fun. It’s so different and we’re still in the steep part of the learning curve. I’m really excited to continue that learning process and figure out more about the car and how to go fast. Daytona was a lot of fun, but it was also a taste of all the stuff we needed to learn. We went back to the shop and talked about it as a group and I think we’ll be a lot stronger doing our second race.

 

“I think one of the biggest things we’ve learned is how the race works, how the practices work, how it all flows. The weekends are so different from our typical sportscar weekends. There are so many little details about how the weekend goes from an operations standpoint. I think it’ll be a real help having that experience under our belt now. We know how many times we need to practice standing starts and a lot of little procedural things like that, so I feel like we’ll be in good shape this weekend.”
– Colin Braun

 

 

 

CORE Set for Fireworks at Watkins Glen

ROCK HILL, S.C. (June 28, 2016) – It’s time for the meat of the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season as CORE autosport prepares to tackle four races in six weeks. Kicking things off is Watkins Glen International, which hosts Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen, the third segment of the Tequila Patròn North American Endurance Cup.

 

The question on everyone’s minds heading into Watkins Glen is how the repaving of the circuit in the off-season will affect the track’s handling and lap times. CORE attempted to get a head start on that question with some testing in May and returned with rave reviews from drivers Jon Benett, Colin Braun and Mark Wilkins.

 

Wilkins will once again join Bennett and Braun in the driver seat for this six-hour event. Wilkins last raced with CORE at the 12 Hours of Sebring, in March, which ended in a victory.

 

Notes

  • CORE finished fourth in last year’s event at Watkins Glen and won the race in 2014.
  • Braun earned the PC pole for the 2014 race. Qualifying was rained out in 2015.
  • Wilkins won overall in a Daytona Prototype at Watkins Glen in 2008.
  • CORE is currently fourth in the PC team standings. Bennett and Braun are fifth in the driver standings.
  • CORE is third in the TPNAEC team championship.

 

 

16-CORE-JB-HeadshotW“Watkins Glen is one of North America’s iconic road courses. I can’t think of a road course with more history. My favorite section is Turn 10. This corner has a bit of camber and the prototype’s downforce is in full effect here. It feels like being fired out of a cannon.

 

“The repaving of Watkins Glen was executed with perfection. When we tested here in May I found the surface to be super-smooth with incredible grip. I predict track records will be easily broken this weekend.

 

“I think racing shares many values with the spirit of our country. The bravery to take risks, the belief that we can always improve and perform better, and the determination to win despite any setbacks. I think our early patriots shared many personality traits with race teams and drivers, so the IMSA weekend at Watkins Glen is a fitting Independence Day celebration.”
– Jon Bennett

 

 

16-CORE-CB-Headshot“Watkins Glen, newly repaved, is a lot of fun and I can’t wait to get back in the PC car with Jon and Mark. The new pavement has a lot of grip. Even though we tested there for a couple of days, the surface is still a bit of an unknown, because that was right after they repaved it. I’m sure its ever-changing. It won’t be similar to our setup notes from last year for sure! It’ll be fun to figure out and see how it develops over the weekend.

 

“I think in the longer races, there’s more opportunity for mistakes to happen and CORE is good at minimizing mistakes. That’s a key element to our success in the long endurance races like Watkins Glen.

 

“There’s nothing more American than Watkins Glen and the history that place has. With the work we do at CORE with the Wounded Warrior Project and the tourniquets that Composite Resources makes, there’s lots of things that tie together to make for a cool, patriotic Independence Day weekend!”
– Colin Braun

 

 

16-CORE-MW-Headshot“Watkins Glen has always been a top track in my mind. I’ve always enjoyed racing there. I’ve had some tough luck there, but I won a big race there in the Daytona Prototype days. My opinion of the track elevated significantly at the test in May. The changes made to the track, the repaving, the choice of material they used, is spectacular. It’s quicker, it’s smooth and it’s super grippy. I’m holding out my final judgment until we race on it, but I was really impressed.

 

“I think the process and procedures that CORE have in place are what prevent us from making mistakes and help us stay out of trouble. I think the amount of experience that everybody has and how long we’ve been racing together makes for a strong cohesiveness. All of that comes together into a well-oiled machine and we just need to go out and execute. We all know what our jobs are and what we bring to the team. In the end, if we can put that all together, then we’re in a position to do well.”
– Mark Wilkins

 

Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen | July 1 – 3

VENUE

Track Length: 3.4 miles, 11 turns

Race Length: Six Hours

 

SCHEDULE (All times Eastern)

Friday, July 1

11:25am – 12:25pm: Practice #1 (All Classes)

3:20pm – 4:20pm: Practice #2 (All Classes)

Saturday, July 2

10:15am – 11:15am: Practice #3 (All Classes)

1:00pm – 1:45pm: Driver Autograph Session

4:30pm – 4:45pm: Qualifying (PC Class)

Sunday, July 3

8:00am – 8:20am: Warm Up (All Classes)

9:00am – 9:40am: Open Grid

10:10am – 4:10pm: Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen

 

TV SCHEDULE (All times Eastern)

LIVE Qualifying:

Friday, July 2

3:40pm – 5:10pm: IMSA.com

LIVE Race U.S.:

Saturday, July 3

10:00am – 4:30pm: FOX Sports 1

LIVE Race International:

Saturday, July 3

10:00am – 4:30pm: IMSA.com

 

LIVE In-Car Cameras & Commentary:

IMSA.tv