The Red Dragon Focuses On Endurance Success at Petit LeMans…and a Top Three Finish in the 2018 IMSA Championship

Racetrack: Road Atlanta

2.54-mile permanent road course features 12 turns

Race: Saturday, October 13, 2018 11:05 am – 10:05 pm ET

LIVE TV: FS1 10:55 am – 12pm ET, FS2 12pm – checkered flag.

Radio/Web: www.IMSA.com – All sessions LIVE

 

FAST FACTS:

+1 For the Simpsons! Congratulations are in order for GAINSCO driver Stephen Simpson and his wife Kristy.   They will welcome their first child in March of 2019!

Chasing the Top Three: The No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Red Dragon™ enters the 10-hour Petit LeMans ranked fifth, just ten points out of the top three in the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.

Endurance Success:  Stephen Simpson, Misha Goikhberg and Chris Miller scored their first IMSA WeatherTech victory at the last endurance race, The Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen.  Stephen Simpson’s phenomenal three-wide pass against Juan Pablo Montoya and Jordan Taylor secured the victory for the Red Dragon.  This weekend, Chris Miller returns to the cockpit to team with Simpson and Goikhberg.

Another New Baby:  Stephen Simpson, JDC-Miller MotorSports Crew Chiefs Josh Kerrigan and Aaron Vogt and team owner John Church visited the Dallara Factory in Indianapolis this week.  The No. 85 and No. 99 Cadillac DPi-V.R’s are being built at the factory and are nearly complete.  Testing is scheduled to commence in early November.

Our Road to The Top Five: The Red Dragon is currently ranked fifth with 231 points. The No. 99’s average starting position is ninth and the average finishing position is sixth.  Simpson and Goikhberg have completed every lap, highlighted with the victory at Watkins Glen and second place at Road America.  Stephen Simpson set the fastest race lap at Mid-Ohio.  Stephen Simpson, Misha Goikhberg and Chris Miller are in a four-way tie for eighth in the Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup Championship with 21 points.

Misha Goikhberg on the season finale, The Petit LeMans: Road Atlanta is a very good track to host the season finale.  The weather is often a factor, most areas of the track have one lane, so traffic management can be consequential. Also, the last couple of hours of the race are in the dark and some areas of the track are not well lit, so that adds another challenging element.  All of this makes for an exciting race.  Our team is ready to finish the season on a high note and we will do our best to clinch 3rd place with the Red Dragon in the season championship.”

Stephen Simpson on his highlights this season, and one race he would change: “I’ve definitely had a few highlights this year.  Firstly, being a part of and representing GAINSCO Auto Insurance driving the Red Dragon for the first time at Daytona…that was a big deal for me.  Bob Stallings has done such a great job over the years building his team, and the success that it has had and to be given the responsibility as one of the drivers in 2018 was fantastic.  Our win at the Sahlen’s 6 Hour at Watkins Glen was another great achievement.  Having come close to winning the race last year and then being able to get the job done this year felt great.  Being able to help get the Red Dragon back into Victory Lane made the win even more special.  Overall, I am happy with my performance this year, but there are always things I’d do slightly differently.  Detroit comes to mind, if I could do that race again, I would have been less aggressive and been more conservative which would have resulted in a much better finish and more points.”

Stephen Simpson on the Race Strategy for Petit LeMans: “The strategy for the 10-hour race is only really going to be finalized on Friday afternoon.  However, Chris, Misha and I will likely rotate in and out of the car three times.  The goal is to make sure we are able to keep up a good average pace, not make mistakes and make sure we put ourselves in a position to be within a shot of winning in the final hour.”

Chris Miller on his return to The Red Dragon for the first time since Watkins Glen: “I can’t remember ever anticipating a race more than this year’s Petit LeMans.  It’s obviously a very special race on its own, but we are also fighting with many cars in the championship and have a good chance to finish in the top three in the standings.  We finished fourth last year, but the competition has been even stronger this season so finishing well would be even more meaningful.  For me personally, it’s the first race back with the team since we won at Watkins Glen!  I know everyone has been working hard and the car has been fast, so I can’t wait to get behind the wheel and do my part to get our GAINSCO Auto Insurance No.99 another great result”

Chris Miller on the transition to the Cadillac DPi-V.R. in 2019: “Petit LeMans will be our last race with the ORECA before we begin our new relationship with Cadillac.    The ORECA has been such a great car for us and it is definitely a little bittersweet to know I may never drive it again.  It would be great to win our final race with the car as a thank you to everyone who has helped us over the last couple of seasons.   After the race we expect to take delivery of the first Cadillac DPi-V.R. to the shop very soon and I can’t wait to see it in person and get to work.  But until the checkered flag waves Saturday night, all of our focus will be on finishing the 2018 IMSA Championship with another win.”

 

Media Contact:

Katie Brannan

P.R. GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing

Cell/Texts: 775.783.9033

www.gainscoracing.com

www.gainsco.com

 

Photography Credit: LAT Photographic

About GAINSCO, Inc.  GAINSCO, Inc. is a U.S. holding company specializing in automobile insurance, automotive sales and service, auto racing and investments. GAINSCO was established in 1978 as a Texas corporation and is based in Dallas, Texas, with a regional office in Miami, Florida. GAINSCO’s insurance company subsidiary is MGA Insurance Company, Inc.  As GAINSCO Inc.’s insurance brand, GAINSCO Auto Insurance® is the primary sponsor of the No.99 Red Dragon in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. GAINSCO distributes policies through a network of thousands of independent agents and digital marketplaces across the southern states. GAINSCO Auto Insurance uses its motorsports sponsorship and marketing campaign to build brand awareness and advance its distribution strategies.

About GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing™:  Committed to excellence in road racing since its formation in 2001, GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing’s legacy includes two Sports Car Championships, 16 victories and 31 pole positions in the Rolex Sports Car Series. Its legacy of all-star drivers includes Bob Stallings, two-time Daytona Prototype Champions Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty, seven-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Jimmie Johnson, two-time IndyCar Champion Jimmy Vasser, GT Champion Darren Law, C.A.R.T. Champion Cristiano da Matta and celebrated American drivers Memo Gidley and Rocky Moran Jr.  The team ceased operations after the 2017 season, opening the door to partner with JDC-Miller Motorsports in the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. For more information, visit www.gainscoracing.com.

 

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2018-10-15T11:09:34+00:00