L.A. to NY For the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge at Watkins Glen
Los Angeles, CA - Watkins Glen, New York is a normally friendly and welcoming little burgh, with a population of just over 2,000.
But it’s world-renowned racetrack, Watkins Glen International, wasn’t very friendly or welcoming to the LA Honda World Racing team in the Touring Car (TCR) class of Saturday’s Tioga Downs Casino Resort 120 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge race.
Things were going along fairly well for LA Honda World Racing’s co-drivers Mike LaMarra and Ryan Eversley until Lap 40 of the 52-lap race.
With Eversley behind the wheel around the 3.4-mile, 11-corner layout and with roughly 25 minutes left in the event, the No. 73 Honda Civic FK7 TCR was running seventh when it lost all power in the track’s noted “Boot” area, pulled off the pavement, was unable to be restarted and was forced to retire.
“Every racer has a story about a $5 part causing them to lose a race and this weekend it was our turn to experience that, unfortunately,” Eversley said. “Mike (LaMarra) did a good job in his stint and ran some great laps before our pit stop.
“However, about 5 laps into my stint the car just shut off and I had to pull over and retire the car. I have to say how impressed I am by the LA Honda World crew. Our pit stops were flawless and the at track presentation is second to none. That’s great to see from such a young program.”
The car wound up being scored 14th in the 16-car TCR class, 12 laps behind the winner.
Ironically, Eversley had just run a strong lap of one minute, 59.771 seconds when the car quit. LaMarra, meanwhile, recorded the fastest lap in the car during his earlier stint behind the wheel at 1:59.607.
The car had qualified ninth in the TCR class with a time of one minute, 58.218 seconds.
“These past few races have worn me down,” an obviously perturbed Eversley said. “(I’m) pretty dejected and beyond frustrated. Something’s gotta give.”
LaMarra said to LA Honda World Racing’s fans, “I can’t thank you guys for the amount of support I receive, it’s amazing. I just wish I could pay you back with a result, but this year has been character building to say the least.”
LA Honda World Racing’s next and final IMSA event of 2022 will be the season-ending Michelin Pilot Challenge event on Sept. 30 for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.
Meanwhile, LA Honda World Racing’s SRO/TC America squad still has eight races remaining on its own schedule, with its next two races, ironically enough, at Watkins Glen International on July 23 and 24.
Part of the Honda Performance Development program, L.A. Honda World Racing is the official race team of L.A. Honda World, a factory-authorized Honda dealership in the Los Angeles suburb of Downey, CA.
About L.A. Honda World Racing
L.A. Honda World Racing is an in-house professional racing team based in Southern California and participates in the SRO / TC America and IMSA racing series exclusively racing touring cars built by Honda Performance Development. They are also a factory authorized Honda dealer for American Honda Motor Co. www.lahondaworldracing.com
About Honda Performance Development
Honda Performance Development, Inc. (HPD), has a rich heritage creating, manufacturing, and supporting Honda Racing and Acura Motorsports customers since 1993. From pinnacle racing in INDYCAR and IMSA Sports Cars to commercial racing programs, HPD powers the dreams of professional and amateur racers from age 4 to 40+. HPD is a wholly owned subsidiary of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. and leads all of Honda and Acura's high-performance racing programs in North America. HPD specializes in the design and development of powertrain, chassis, electronics, and performance parts, as well as technical and race support. HPD offers parts and race support to Honda and Acura amateur and professional motorsports racers and is continually expanding its palette of racing programs that make Honda racing products available to all racing styles, from karting and Quarter Midgets to the highest levels of pro racing. For more information, visit www.hpd.honda.com