Prototype Challenge Canadian Tire Motorsport Park Sunday Notebook
Sunday, July 9, 2017

The second of two 45-minute weekend sprint races of the IMSA Prototype Challenge Presented by Mazda series at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park found Kenton Koch once again leading a field of exuberant points chasers to the green flag for another heated contest on his road to another series victory.

A field of 17 cars rushed to take the green flag Sunday morning at 9:30 a.m. ET on the 3.957-km (2.459-mi), 10-Turn road course and formed a tight scrum at the start. 

As Koch breezed under the flag in his P1 Motorsports Ligier JS P3 and took point in nearly a repeat of yesterday’s performance, a multiple-car incident in Turn 2 nearly three quarters of the way through the field spelled trouble for the No. 2 of newcomer Michael Watt, the No. 38 of Stephen Dawes and the No. 7 of Kris Wright, causing the first full-course caution period of the race.

Watt in his ASC Motorsports Ligier continued, but Wright of JDC Motorsports and Dawes of Performance Tech Motorsports were unable to continue and retired from competition.

As the field went back to green on Lap 6, Koch and rival Colin Thompson in the No. 14 Kelly-Moss Road and Race entry took the opportunity, and the perfect track conditions, to check out and build a significant gap on the field.

In a repeat of yesterday’s performance, Thompson seemed to be struggling with the Norma M30 chassis in handling due to repairs from an on-track incident last weekend at Watkins Glen International. As the race progressed, the gap between he and Koch continued to grow, despite Thompson’s increasingly faster lap times.

As the checkered flag dropped on LMP3 competition, Koch had gained over a 12-second gap on Thompson to take his second flag-to-flag win of the weekend. And while Thompson’s efforts resulted in a solid second place, he proved that he still had the pace to challenge with very nearly a 40-second lead on the third finishing LMP3 entry of Naj Husain in the No. 3 entry of Extreme Speed Motorsports.

This was Husain’s second finish of the weekend on the overall LMP3 podium as well as a dual sweep of the LMP3 Masters victories. All in all, a great weekend for the Plains, Virginia driver in his Cloudistics Ligier in his first weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

In a flip-flop of yesterday’s performance, Paul Fix moved into the second-place position in LMP3 Masters in his No. 44 Ave Motorsports Ave-Riley AR2, taking advantage of Watt’s battle with Stuart Rettie in his ODU Motorsports MPC entry. The two had light contact near the end of the race on Lap 29, forcing Rettie to retire and Watt to limp the last two laps to the checkered flag to finish third in class.

It was déjà vu again in MPC competition, as Kyle Masson restarted his winning streak in yesterday’s sprint and continued to keep in high gear for race two, taking his seventh series victory Sunday.

He once again shared the podium with his elders, as the MPC Masters field boxed Masson in with Jon Brownson in the No. 34 Eurosport entry taking second place on the MPC podium, as well as the victory in Masters. He was followed by his race rival Joel Janco in the No. 25 entry of JDC Motorsports. The two enjoyed an epic on-track duel throughout the race, improving their positions to finish in fifth and sixth overall, respectively.

Yesterday’s MPC Masters class winner, Michal Chlumecky, began his race in fine form, holding the lead and running as high as fifth overall before a spin in Turn 1 and light contact with the tire barriers ended his day, giving up the class win to Brownson.

Up next for the IMSA Prototype Challenge Presented by Mazda series is Round 9, which will take place July 21-22 at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Connecticut as part of the Northeast Grand Prix.

Delayed television coverage of the IMSA Prototype Challenge races at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park as part of the Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix in conjunction with the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will be provided July 27, 2017, at 8 p.m. on Fox Sports 2 (FS2). The broadcast will also be available on YouTube 24 hours after it airs on television.

For more information on all IMSA competition - or to access IMSA Radio, which will have live streaming of both races - visit IMSA.com.

For more information about the IMSA Prototype Challenge Presented by Mazda series, visit www.imsa.com, follow hashtag #IMSAPC, @IMSA on Twitter or IMSA on Facebook.

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