Caledon Ontario, (August 25th 2014). The Mantella Autosport, No.8 Powered by Spyder/Gulf lubricants Aston Martin Vantage raced hard to a strong finish at the famed VIR circuit, earning a season best P7 while setting a new race lap record along the way.

Once upon a time there was a giant Oak Tree here. Now just the Aston that set a new race lap record.

Once upon a time there was a giant Oak Tree here. Now just the Aston that set a new race lap record.

Hot and humid conditions welcomed the CTSCC teams for the 10th round of the championship at the hilly, technical and fast VIR circuit. A schedule conflict with the Pirelli World Challenge Championship, currently led by team driver Mark Wilkins meant another Canadian talent would be at the helm for this round. A pre-event test at Mosport allowed Sasha Anis to acquaint himself with the Vantage and be well prepared for the VIR event. 3 hours of track time on the promoter test day allowed both Anthony Mantella and Sasha Anis to get up to speed and apply the lessons learned on the IRacing simulator.

JKMD7819

At the shaded false grid ready to go.

Friday brought the first official sessions and at the end of the final practice, it was clear the setup work done on the Aston was On Point, with Sasha Anis posting 4th fastest time, just 5/100ths off P1. Next up Anthony Mantella drove a well executed qualifying, placing the Aston on the 7th row for the 2.5 hour Saturday race.

Despite having been widened during the re-pave, VIR is still a difficult track to pass on, patience was a must to safely move by the ST traffic.

Despite having been widened during the re-pave, VIR is still a difficult track to pass on, patience was a must to safely move by the ST traffic.

“It was spectacular to be back in the seat of the Aston following a good run at Road America” said Anthony Mantella. “VIR just might have earned the title of my favourite new track, providing a much appreciated challenge. Even with a great setup provided by the best team in the paddock, the famed Uphill Esses at VIR literally sent me spinning. I can hardly wait to get back on that track again.

“Sasha Anis is a tireless competitor, his analytical and driving skills coupled with his desire to constantly be better and faster makes for one hell of a party on the racetrack. Also, without fail, Andrew Wojteczko brought his A game to the track once again, ever improving the Aston, making the car fast–maybe too fast for me! Bring on the cowboy hats and spurs, it’s almost time to party in Texas!”

Can you feel the love? I think so.

Can you feel the love? Sure can.

“The team did an incredible job with the car setup all weekend long” said Sasha Anis.  “We knew that the car would be prone to a loose condition under trail-braking and worked hard to address that in testing prior to coming to VIR. We ended up with a very stable setup that I could push hard on all race – and the tire wear was very uniform. As a result we had the fastest car in the closing laps of the race while other teams were struggling to put power down.”

“I have to thank the Mantella Autosport team, specifically Anthony and Andrew for giving me the opportunity to drive again in GS. The guys put their faith in me to deliver a good result despite the fact that I had never driven VIR, and I am ecstatic that we were able to set a new race lap record at VIR and bring the car home without any damage. Anthony drove a great race and gave me a fresh car that could run hard right to the end.”

“One of the things we focused on this weekend was to have a ton of fun, which turned out to be very easy with the Mantella guys. The team’s dynamic is one that you don’t come across very often – everyone has great chemistry and we were all in good spirits while still focusing and getting our respective jobs done with absolute focus and attention to detail. I really believe that success can only come when everyone is relaxed and in good spirits – and this weekend was a great example of that.” Sasha Anis.

As always, the fan walk was well attended, if you haven't already, you have to come experience a CTSCC race in person.

As always, the fan walk was well attended, if you haven’t already, you have to come experience a CTSCC race in person. The best Sportscar racing, period.

The team now prepares for some local testing before heading South to Texas for the penultimate round of the 2014 CTSCC championship. Get your cowboy hats ready, it’s going to be a good one.

Anthony leads the race winning 07 TRG Aston before a minor off track excursion forced an unscheduled stop.

Anthony leads the race winning 07 TRG Aston before a minor off track excursion forced an unscheduled stop.

Already looking forward to 2015 at VIR. Such a great event.

Already looking forward to 2015 at VIR. Such a great event.

To keep up to date on the travels of the Mantella Autosport Race Team check out our Facebook and Instagram and Mantellaautosport.com where we will post updates all season long.

Mantella Autosport is an 8 man, all Canadian, race team based out of Caledon Ontario. For 2014 they are campaigning an Aston Martin Vantage GT4 factory race car in the Continental Tire Sportscar Challenge. The televised 12 race schedule, will see the team travel to premier race tracks in North America on their mission to win the 2014 Championship.

Anthony Mantella – Team owner and driver. 2014 marks his inaugural season in Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. In 2013 Anthony finished 3rd overall in the Masters Class in the Porsche GT3 Cup Canada Platinum. In 2012 Anthony finished 6th overall in the same class.

Mark Wilkins – Driver. Winner of the 2014 Rolex 24 Hrs of Daytona, PC class, 3rd – 2013 Pirelli World Challenge GTS championship, 3rd – 2013 GT Rolex 24, 1st -2012 Petit Le Mans in the PC class. 1st – 2010 Sebring 12 hour Winner PC class, 1st -2010 Laguna 6 hour PC class. Mark’s skill behind the wheel coupled with his car set up and driver coaching abilities makes him an incredible asset to the Mantella Autosport Team.

For more information on Sponsorship Opportunities, and Track Experiences contact Lance Webb at jlancewebb@gmail.com