- All-GT class racing puts spotlight on GTLM and GTD at Northeast Grand Prix
- Connecticut resident Ryan Briscoe and co-driver Richard Westbrook hope to keep climbing IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship point standings
- Ford second in manufacturer point standings, just two points behind leader
LAKEVILLE, Conn. – No track features door-to-door, all-GT class fisticuffs quite like Lime Rock Park. This week, the annual IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Series showdown returns to northwest Connecticut for more action and Ford Chip Ganassi Racing hopes to be in the mix.
“(The Northeast Grand Prix at) Lime Rock is a very unique event and like no other track we race on all year,” said Richard Westbrook, co-driver of the No. 67 Ford GT with Ryan Briscoe. “It only has one left-hander which makes it very interesting setting up the car. Our team and engineers have a lot of experience oval racing and this will, of course, be a help. It will be great for fans of the GT class to see a whole field of GTs lead the field and the weather and crowd are always superb at Lime Rock at this time of the year, so I cannot wait.”
While most IMSA WeatherTech races feature prototype cars as well, the easily recognizable, built-for-consumers GT cars are increasingly fan favorites. At Lime Rock Park, the best of GT class racing stands alone in the spotlight.
Westbrook and Briscoe, an Australian who is raising his family in Connecticut with wife Nicole, an ESPN sportscaster, have scored two podiums in a row and hope to continue to climb the championship point standings. Last year, the two finished third at Lime Rock.
“It’s definitely always an exciting one for me, being my home track, per se, for the last few years,” said Briscoe, who moved to the state in 2014. “It’s the smallest track we go to, but it’s very high-speed and intense, just a really hard race. Last year, we started on pole and ended up third after a close battle with the Corvettes, so we’ll try to continue our podium streak and try to get the first win for the No. 67 Ford GT this year.”
Last weekend Briscoe attended the Formula E race in Brooklyn, N.Y. to promote the Northeast Grand Prix, courtesy of Lime Rock and Ford Chip Ganassi Racing tire partner Michelin. He attended the grid walk, toured the paddock and answered questions about this weekend’s race.
“It was pretty cool to see so many race fans wearing Lime Rock Park gear that are going up to the race this week,” Briscoe said.
Joey Hand and Dirk Müller, co-drivers of the No. 66 Ford GT, are currently third in the championship points standings, 10 points behind the leaders, while Westbrook and Briscoe are fourth. Ford is second in the GTLM manufacturers standings, just two points behind the leader.