George Kurtz won Round 5 of the 2022 GT America powered by AWS series, completing a dominant day that began with a last-second pole position in qualifying this morning, and ended with a grand slam victory from lights to flag.
On a sunny Saturday afternoon, a grid of 26 GT3, GT2, and GT4 cars took the green flag at ten minutes past noon. Kurtz led the SRO3 class field of seven to the green flag, and led the opening lap ahead of the #191 Zelus Motorsports Lamborghini Huracan GT3 of Utah’s Jeff Burton.
Kurtz and Burton traded fastest laps before a Safety Car was deployed on lap five when the #60 Dexter Racing Ginetta G56 GT4 of Matthew Ibrahim stopped at the Horse Shoe Corner (turn one).
When the race resumed, Kurtz got the drop on the field and began pulling away gradually, resetting the fastest lap of the race several times after the restart.
He completed 21 laps en route to a perfect victory, his second SRO3 class win of the season and his first since the opening round in St. Petersburg, Florida. And, by setting the fastest lap of the race with a 1’46.353, Kurtz is guaranteed the pole position for tomorrow’s Race 2 and could be poised to sweep the weekend.
The lumber magnate Burton came home in second, and Zelus Motorsports got both cars on the podium after Jason Harward charged through the field after a pit lane start, snatching third place from the #56 SKI Autosport Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 of Andy Pilgrim on the penultimate lap while they worked through slower GT4 traffic!
It was a great recovery after a spill at Oak Tree Corner (turn 11/12) in GT World Challenge America qualifying – and a subsequent change of tyres while under parc ferme – forced a pit lane start for Harward. He even went off at the same spot during the race, but didn’t lose any positions as he regrouped and charged forward.
Pilgrim finished fourth ahead of his old SPEED World Challenge rival Jason Daskalos in fifth, driving the #27 Daskalos Motorsports Audi R8 LMS Ultra. The #37 Triarsi Competizione Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo of Justin Wetherill was sixth.
CJ Moses also went from the pit lane to finish seventh overall as the sole GT2 entry, beating out the SRO3 class #70 MISHUMOTORS Callaway Corvette C7 GT3-R of Mirko Shultis after the German journeyman went off course in the final four laps.
Taking his first GT4 class win of the season was Adam Adelson in the #120 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport RS. This follows a GT4 America Pro-Am sweep in the most recent race meeting at NOLA Motorsports Park in May.
Adelson started from second behind polesitter Moisey Uretsky in the #55 Accelerating Performance Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4. But after the safety car restart, Adelson overtook Uretsky for the lead.
Ross Chouest in the #50 Chouest Povoledo Racing Vantage was making a play for second place, but he oversped into the first part of the Horse Shoe and went off course. This allowed Adelson to break away from Uretsky, who now had the #2 GMG Racing Vantage of Jason Bell bearing down on him.
Adelson completed 20 laps to take the victory, with Uretsky in second, and Bell in third.
Uretsky, who took the GT4 class pole for Race 1 this morning, set a fastest lap of 1’56.150 to take the class pole position for Race 2 tomorrow.
The #79 RENNtech Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT4 of Chris Gumprecht finished in fourth, ahead of the #8 Flying Lizard Motorsports Vantage of Elias Sabo in fifth, and the #25 Heart of Racing Vantage of Gray Newell in sixth.
The #19 NOLASPORT Cayman of Alain Stad was a late scratch from GT America this weekend (he and Seth Thomas will run GT4 America only), while the #21 Carrus Callas Raceteam GR Supra of Nick Shanny did not start. The #124 ARG/Rotek Racing Ford Mustang GT4 of Chris Alliegro retired after 11 laps following an incident with the #888 Zelus Motorsports Vantage GT4 of Sean Whalen, and was the third retirement after Ibrahim and Shanny.
Images © Brian Cleary, Fred Hardy, James Lietz / SRO Motorsports Group AmericaThe post George Kurtz Wins Round 5 of GT America at VIR first appeared on dailysportscar.com.