Pirelli World Challenge GTS, KTM XBow GT4 #8, #80, #88

Posts tagged ‘Mantella’

Mantella Autosport is your Canadian source for APR software and hardware upgrades for your VW, Audi, and Porsche vehicles. Please don’t hesitate to give us a call or email with any questions you may have or to schedule an appointment.

Anthony Mantella leads teammate Martin Barkey through CTMP's high speed Turn 1. No brakes needed in the KTM XBow here.

Anthony Mantella leads teammate Martin Barkey through CTMP’s high speed Turn 1 in their APR flashed XBow’s. No brakes needed in the KTM here.

We race what we sell, APR calibrations have been used successfully by the Mantella Autosport Audi powered KTM XBow GT4’s to win multiple races in the Pirelli World Challenge GTS Championship.

As a Mk7 Golf R owner with APR upgrades, Technician Andrew Stittle with Mantella Autosport understands first hand what APR upgrades can do for you.

As a Mk7 Golf R owner with APR upgrades, Technician Andrew Stittle with Mantella Autosport understands first hand what APR upgrades can do for you.

Experienced technicians are standing by to give you the professional level service you expect for your fine automobile.

Contact: Andrew Wojteczko, andrew@mantellaautosport.com, 647-588-3044

Bowmanville, Ontario

The third event of the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge GTS Championship marks the only Canadian stop on the schedule, a track that is respected world-wide as a high speed and high consequence circuit, that also happens to be Anthony Mantella and Martin Barkey’s home track. Located 1 hour East from Toronto, this former F1 circuit draws large crowds and always offers fans an action filled experience.

Martin Barkey on route to Mantella Autosport's first Pole Position. Congratulations Martin on a great Qualifying.

Martin Barkey on route to Mantella Autosport’s first Pole Position. Congratulations Martin on a great Qualifying.

After a successful test program leading up to the event, the teams’ KTM XBow GT4’s were dialed in and ready to do battle. Martin Barkey wasted no time, securing pole position in the #80 MBRP Exhaust Mantella Autosport KTM XBow for Race #1.

Anthony Mantella leads teammate Martin Barkey through CTMP's high speed Turn 1. No brakes needed in the KTM XBow here.

Anthony Mantella leads teammate Martin Barkey through CTMP’s high speed Turn 1. No brakes needed in the KTM XBow here.

Anthony Mantella drove a great Race #2 finding the final step of the podium, P3 in front of the home crowd and the teams first podium of 2017. Strong performances from both team drivers moved Anthony up to P4 in the overall GTS Championship and maintained Martin’s P2 standing. 2017 is shaping up to be a strong championship effort for Mantella Autosport.

Anthony Mantella barely avoids a Mustang GT4 that suffered a driveline failure on the standing start.

Anthony Mantella barely avoids a Mustang GT4 that suffered a driveline failure on the standing start.

Podium celebrations after a hard fought P3. Congratulations Anthony!

Podium celebrations after a hard fought P3. Congratulations Anthony!

The CTMP autograph session was well attended. Always a great opportunity to meet your favourite drivers.

The CTMP autograph session was well attended. Always a great opportunity to meet your favourite drivers.

Mantella Racing- Pirelli World Challenge CTMP

Lead tech on the 8 car Joe Ferguson and Team Manager/Engineer Andrew Wojteczko reflect on a successful event while waiting for the 8 car to clear post race tech.

Follow us on Facebook (Mantella Autosport) and Instagram (Mantella_Autosport), and check out our awesome event videos on Youtube or on the Mantellaautosport.com website. Photos by: Michael Wong

Alton, Virginia, May 8 2017

Picturesque Virginia International Raceway marked the location for the second event (races 3 and 4) of the Pirelli World Challenge GTS Championship.

At the famous Oak Tree corner.

At the famous Oak Tree corner.

Martin Barkey and Anthony Mantella’s time spent testing at VIR made itself immediately apparent when they topped the final practice session leading into Qualifying.

Lined up for Race 1

Lined up for Race 1

Qualifying saw Anthony put together a well executed 4th place effort and Martin 6th. Unfortunately a penalty carried forward from the St.Pete event meant Anthony would start 5 spots back.

Trying hard to find passing opportunities

Trying hard to find passing opportunities

Martin drove a great race managing a 4th place finish and a 2nd row starting position for Race 2. Anthony ended up P11 but was fast enough to qualify on the 3rd row for race 2.

Race 2

Race 2

Race 2 saw a close battle between Anthony Mantella and Jason Bell, unfortunately minor contact resulted in a cut right front tire and a pit stop for replacement. Anthony continued but was no longer in touch with the leaders. Martin Barkey struggled to get some passes done early and ended up P5.

Consistency is proving to be key in the 2017 GTS championship, after 4 races Martin Barkey sits in 2nd place in the overall championship.

Follow us on Facebook (Mantella Autosport) and Instagram (Mantella_Autosport), and check out our awesome event videos on Youtube or on the Mantellaautosport.com website. Photos by:Jay Bonvouloir

St. Petersburg Florida, March 21 2017

The 2017 Pirelli World Challenge GTS championship kicked off March 10-12 in the streets of St. Petersburg Florida. It was exciting to see the new hardware in the class now made up of the KTM XBow GT4, Mclaren 570 GT4, Camaro GT4, SIN R1 GT4, Mustang GT4, Cayman Clubsport MR GT4 and the Panoz Avezzano currently awaiting it’s GT4 Homologation. The GT4 category is really looking like the place to be for great competition without the costs of GT3 category racing.

Constant action in turn 1

Constant action in turn 1 as Martin Barkey gets the inside line.

Anthony Mantella holds off the Camaro GT4 in turn 1

Anthony Mantella holds off the Camaro GT4 in turn 1

PWC maintained the double header sprint race format for 2017 and once again it didn’t disappoint with two action packed 50 minute races. Martin Barkey ran a clean race #1 earning P5 and won the first ever GTS-A race while Anthony Mantella finished P10.

Winner of the first ever GTS-A race, we'll take it but we're here for overall wins.

Winner of the first ever GTS-A race, we’ll take it but we’re here for overall wins.

Day 2 saw Martin Barkey challenging the lead pack, holding P4 while Anthony Mantella was looking for opportunities to get by the Camaro of Tony Gaples while defending the Panoz of Ian James. It all went wrong on the restart when Martin Barkey made contact with Lawson Aschenbach going for the inside pass, and Anthony mantella made contact with Ian James, defending on the inside. Martin was able to continue, serve a drive through penalty and work his way back to P11.

 

Not the day Anthony Mantella had hoped for, focused forward now to VIR

Not the day Anthony Mantella had hoped for, focused forward now to VIR

The streets of St.Pete are a beautiful place to race.

The streets of St.Pete are a beautiful place to race.

While St.Pete didn’t bring the results we’d hoped for, the cars ran flawlessly and there is much to build on going to the second round of the season at VIR. Following the race the team went straight to VIR for 2 days of official testing with Pirelli World Challenge. It was great seeing both Anthony and Martin challenge each other to improve and learn from each others strengths on track. Bring on the second round of the championship!

You can't beat the experience racing like this brings. Want to find out for yourself? Email andrew@mantellaautosport.com to find out more.

You can’t beat the experience racing like this brings. Want to find out for yourself? Email andrew@mantellaautosport.com to find out more.

Follow us on Facebook (Mantella Autosport) and Instagram (Mantella_Autosport), and check out our awesome event videos on Youtube or on the Mantellaautosport.com website. Photos by:Jay Bonvouloir

Monterey, California. (October 21, 2016) – The season finale of the 2016 Pirelli World Challenge championship took place at the famed Laguna Seca circuit, world-renowned for the “Corkscrew” corner and stunning views surrounding the track. The weather was perfect for a motor race, clear and sunny averaging 25 degrees C. Unfortunately these same conditions have left much of the surrounding area in a state of drought, making farming difficult and increasing risk of fire. It is a constant reminder that we need to be conscious of our consumption and the state of our environment, and take measures within motorsport to reduce our environmental impact.

Working together in the early going of Race 1, P2 and P3 chasing down the leader

Working together in the early going of Race 1, P2 and P3 chasing down the leader

Two test day sessions kicked off the event, and it was clear we were off pace. We have found a setup window that has worked well at the recent events, however this was not going to work at Laguna Seca. The team worked efficiently to run through an array of setup changes put together by team engineer Andrew Wojteczko. It was clear the setup work paid off when Martin Barkey claimed his first Pirelli World Challenge win in race #1 with Anthony close behind in P4.

Action packed racing as always in the GTS category. Some of the best racing around, period.

Action packed racing as always in the GTS category. Some of the best racing around, period.

Unfortunately Sunday’s race did not go to plan with the #8 car serving a drive through penalty for avoidable contact early in the race and ultimately both the #8 and #80 cars retiring with gearbox issues. The team will identify and address the failures making sure the issue does not recur going forward.

Martin has had the opportunity to dial in his champagne game this season, with three podiums, finding the top step at the final event of the season

Martin has had the opportunity to dial in his champagne game this season, with three podiums, finding the top step at the final event of the season

Reflecting back, the 2016 race season saw the Mantella Autosport team overcome adversity in the early going, develop an intimate understanding of the Xbow from a driver, engineering and mechanical perspective ultimately leading to great results. The close knit nature of the team is undeniably a large factor in the success, generating a great deal of excitement from all involved to carry the momentum forward into the 2017 season.

Celebrating the win at the wall, congratulations Martin Barkey!

Celebrating the win at the wall, congratulations Martin Barkey! (From left to right, Andrew Wojteczko, Brandon Yapp, Kevin Stittle, Kyle McDougall)

Mantella Autosport is currently accepting resumes from funded drivers interested in joining the program to compete alongside Anthony Mantella and Martin Barkey as a 3 car effort in the proven winning KTM XBow GT4 for the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge GTS Championship.

It's a team effort, from driving to wrenching, engineering to spotting, respect and comradery, these are all elements that make success possible

It’s a team effort, from driving to wrenching, engineering to spotting, tires to film and media, these are all elements that make success possible (from left to right: Eric Urness, Andrew Wojteczko, Joe Ferguson, Kevin Stittle, Jacob Barkey, Martin Barkey, Anthony Mantella, Kyle McDougall, Andrew Stittle, Corson Panneton, Trevor McClure, Brandon Yapp, Carl Cason)

Be sure to follow the Mantella Autosport website (www.mantellaautosport.com) facebook and Instagram accounts for all the latest details. Media by Sawmill Creative

That's a wrap on 2016. There is no question that auto racing builds friendships like nothing else.

That’s a wrap on 2016. There is no question that auto racing builds friendships like nothing else.

Sonoma, California. (September 21, 2016) – The penultimate round of the Pirelli World Challenge Championships brought the team to beautiful sunny California. Formerly known as Sears Point, Infineon, and now Sonoma Raceway, whatever you call it, this is one beautiful race circuit. Surrounded by rolling hills the track mirrors the landscape with blind crests and high speed curves, coupled with some heavy break zones and tight hairpins that invite some risky passes.

Anthony Mantella, Racing hard to turn 2, avoiding the spinning Maserati

Anthony Mantella, Racing hard to turn 2, avoiding the spinning Maserati

Both Anthony Mantella in the #8 Gulf liveried KTM Xbow GT4 and Martin Barkey in the #80 MBRP Exhaust KTM XBow GT4 have yet to compete at Sonoma raceway, so testing was key to success. Three days of testing prior to the event yielded the necessary time to familiarize with the challenging circuit and hone the setup.

Joe Ferguson always makes sure the XBow he oversees is prepared to perfection.

Joe Ferguson always makes sure the XBow he oversees is prepared to perfection.

Come race day, all of the testing and preparation clearly paid dividends with Martin Barkey setting fastest race lap, and Anthony Mantella hot on his heels, both battling for P2 for the majority of the run. Unfortunately Anthony Mantella made contact that forced a pit stop for repair, ultimately taking him out of the competition. Then the same fate for Martin Barkey, contact with the same car that ended the run for the #8, caused damage to the #80 and a drive thru penalty. A decision to complete the race and appeal the drive thru held on to P4 at the line, but was unsuccessful resulting in loss of points for Race 1 and starting from the back for Race 2.

Martin Barkey moving to the front, leads the Maserati of Jeff Courtney

Martin Barkey moving to the front, leads the Maserati of Jeff Courtney

Race 2, and the standing start that saw both cars stall on grid at Utah, was not a problem here. A great launch saw Anthony Mantella battling for the lead and Martin Barkey making his charge to the front. Once again Martin set fastest race lap, working his way up to P7 and a clean car at the chequer. Anthony earned the move of the race, with an impressive outside pass around a very wide mustang in the bus stop, claiming his second straight podium and P2.

Anthony Mantella finds the podium for the second straight event.

Anthony Mantella finds the podium for the second straight event.

The team now prepares for the season Finale at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Don’t miss it, October 7-9th, where KTM looks to secure the manufacturers championship.

Exiting the tight turn 7 hairpin.

Exiting the tight turn 7 hairpin.

Be sure to follow the Mantella Autosport website (www.mantellaautosport.com) facebook and Instagram accounts for all the latest details. Media by Sawmill Creative

It was a hard fought race with the Camaro Z28.R of Lawson Aschenbach, multiple passes back and forth made for some great action for the fans.

It was a hard fought race with the Camaro Z28.R of Lawson Aschenbach, multiple passes back and forth made for some great action for the fans.

Lakeville, CT. (June 4, 2016)

Martin Leads Hugh Plumb in an XBow vs XBow battle

Martin Leads Hugh Plumb in an XBow vs XBow battle

Lime Rock Park is a beautiful racing circuit with recent updates, nestled in the rolling hills and forests of Connecticut. Though the track does face some scheduling challenges due to local bylaws restricting on track activity on select weekdays and Sundays, it is always a pleasure to race at this historic circuit. The track features significant elevation changes, mostly right hand corners and a short overall length (1.5 miles) that breeds close racing and has earned the track the nickname “The Bull Ring”

Starting the event right with some tips from GT driving ace Kyle Marcelli. From left to right, Martin Barkey, Anthony Mantella, Kyle Marcelli, Andrew Wojteczko

Starting the event right with some tips from GT driving ace Kyle Marcelli. Serious business.
From left to right, Martin Barkey, Anthony Mantella, Kyle Marcelli, Andrew Wojteczko

The majority of the promoter test day was rained out, erasing the opportunity to complete valuable setup work. So, straight into race day with not enough time between sessions to make any significant changes. Fortunately we had good KTM XBow GT4’s off the trailer and were ready to challenge the competition.

That's one hard charging Anthony Mantella! Congratulations!!

That’s one hard charging Anthony Mantella! Congratulations!!

“I was excited to compete at Lime rock because I believe the KTM is perfectly suited to this track.” Said Anthony Mantella “Lime Rock is very small and very hard to pass on. The KTM does not have the top speed needed to pass on the straights but it’s very fast in the corners. I was honoured to be presented with the Hard Charger Award for passing six cars on the start of Race #1. I was having a great race until a significant blow by Harry Gottsacker in the #29 Ginetta at the half way mark damaged the car and ended my day.

Turning right

Turning right

With the car repaired and ready for Race #2’s standing start format, Anthony dropped the hammer when the lights went out but didn’t get the launch he was looking for. “Unfortunately with the poor start I lost one position but gained it back being aggressive in corner one. Once again I was racing with the #29 car, this time looking to over take, I had a run on the exit of corner three, I tried to stay on the throttle to pass him and we made contact, ending the race for both of us. Not the result Anthony was after but when his race was done, he came direct to the pit lane to cheer on teammate Martin Barkey.

Holding off a SIN R1 in the MBRP XBow GT4

Holding off a SIN R1 in the MBRP XBow GT4

“You just have to love the BullRing!” exclaimed Martin Barkey. “It’s tight and small with very limited passing so it always delivers good, close racing. Mantella Autosport had the MBRP KTM Xbow GT4 set up just right allowing me to grab a P10 in race one and my first PWC podium, P2 in race two. Racing door to door with these guys is a blast, watching what the competitor’s cars were able to do well while trying to capitalize on what the KTM does well made for some great racing. I look forward to taking this momentum to Road America in June.”

P2 at the chequer, Congratulations Martin Barkey on your first PWC podium!!

P2 at the chequer, Congratulations Martin Barkey on your first PWC podium!!

While it was thrilling to see Martin achieve his first PWC podium and finish the weekend with a great result, our thoughts and prayers are with the DeLaTorre and Palmer families, both drivers sustained critical injuries in the Saturday morning warmup for the Lime Rock Park PWC GT race. Wishing a speedy recovery from everyone at Mantella Autosport.

Be sure to follow along at Mantellaautosport.com, on Facebook @mantellaautosport, on Instagram @mantellaautosport

Photo Credit: Sawmill Creative

 

 

Bowmanville, Ontario (July 11, 2015) – Mantella Autosport challenged for the lead and proved it was a contender for victory at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

Cresting the infamous corner 2 at Mosport

Cresting the infamous corner 2 at Mosport

The Gulf Oil No. 8 Camaro Z/28.R of Anthony Mantella and Mark Wilkins recorded its best finish of the season of fifth after starting ninth, while the MBRP Inc. No. 80 Camaro Z/28.R of Martin Barkey and Kyle Marcelli finished sixth after starting eighth.

Raising awareness and support for a young boy suffering from Severe Aplastic Anemia

Raising awareness and support for a young boy suffering from Severe Aplastic Anemia

 

Oliver checking out the view from the driver's seat.

Oliver checking out the view from the driver’s seat.

The two-hour, 30-minute race featured five yellow flags, and the caution periods played into the team’s race strategy.

The Mantella Autosport paddock was the place to be all weekend with large crowds and Gulf promotional giveaways.

The Mantella Autosport paddock was the place to be all weekend with large crowds and Gulf promotional giveaways.

In the first hour of the race, the No. 8 and No. 80 were running first and second, respectively, in the Grand Sport class, with Wilkins and Marcelli dueling for the lead. The two cars were on a different pit strategy than the rest of the field and pitted with 30 minutes under green, dropping in position.

Kyle and Mark leading the field into turn 9

Kyle and Mark leading the field into turn 9

Both Marcelli and Wilkins recovered to their respective finishes, hoping the leading cars would have to pit for fuel and tires.

Get your signed Mantella Autosport team posters! Available at upcoming CTSCC events.

Get your signed Mantella Autosport team posters! Available at upcoming CTSCC events.

Mantella Autosport had no such luck but walked away proud of the fight it produced for guests from Gulf Oil Canada and MBRP Inc., and family that came to support the team.

“Anthony did an awesome job today,” Wilkins said. “He gave me a clean car and a perfect car to go out and just run. The yellows sort of helped and sort of didn’t. They definitely got us in the game. We took two tires on the last stop toward the end, and we knew we had plenty of fuel. We knew the guys in front of us would be close (on fuel).

“We were strong today, for sure. It’s just so hard to pass here at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. All in all, it’s a good day for Mantella Autosport, the Camaro Z/28.R and Team Chevy.”

Carl Cason getting the wheels and tires ready to race.

Carl Cason getting the wheels and tires ready to race.

Mantella handed a smooth-running race car to Wilkins after fighting off competitors and gaining position while battling with the No. 80 of Barkey and Marcelli.

“The strategy worked perfectly at the end,” Mantella said. “In the beginning, it wasn’t working out, but then it came to us. What was supposed to happen was the cars in front of us were supposed to run out of fuel or run out of tires. It didn’t work that way. Those guys conserved their fuel, conserved their tires. They’re pro drivers, so you never know what’s going to happen. So we’re fifth and sixth, and it’s a great showing at our home track.

“During the driver change, Mark only took two tires and was running with guys that took four tires. That says something about Mark’s capability that he can only take two and still run the pace with the guys up front. That really says a lot about what kind of a driver he is.”

Back on track after the final stop making a push to the front.

Back on track after the final stop making a push to the front.

Marcelli and Barkey in the No. 80 Camaro Z/28.R were in tune to the steps of the No. 8. The teammates spent a majority of their race fighting for the front, alongside Wilkins and Mantella.

The No. 80 car ran a similar pit strategy to the No. 8, though it opted for four tires during the driver change.

Nick Giovanatto brings positive energy and keeps spirits high

Nick Giovanatto brings positive energy and keeps spirits high

“It was a good showing for Mantella Autosport for both cars to be up front for a good portion of the race,” Marcelli said. “I had a lot of fun. It was tough. We had a lot of work to do going into the race. To lead a good portion of it was a lot of fun and was a good show for the home crowd. It proved to myself that I’m capable and proved to the team that we are capable.

“Our strategy was a bit different from the leaders, so we were always a bit off-sequence. The difficult thing here is passing. It’s such a fast track and there are two brake zones, and if you’re defensive through there, it’s like follow the leader. I threw a ‘Hail Mary’ and got side-by-side with our sister car a couple of times. But overall it was a good showing, and I’m happy with our result.”

8 vs 80 driver change practice put on a good show for the fans under the Mantella Autosport tent.

8 vs 80 driver change practice put on a good show for the fans under the Mantella Autosport tent.

Barkey and Marcelli were hoping to best their top finish of fourth place, posted in mid-March at Sebring International Raceway. But their finish encouraged the team and showed progress.

“Overall, it was a great race,” Barkey said. “Kyle and I both are happy with our driving. The team provided a great car. Hats off to Mantella Autosport. We started the race off battling back in seventh, eighth and ninth. We had a great race with the guys in the No. 41 Nissan, and between Anthony and I working together and being able to fend off the Nissan, I was able to find a position on Anthony. We just continued to work together and work our way through.

The crew all ready to rock on race day

The crew all ready to rock on race day

“The first pit stop we found ourselves in second and third, and later on in the race Kyle and Mark found first and second. I think it was a really good showing. We’ve probably got over 100 guests here as a team, and we’re excited to put on a good show for everybody. I think we finished where we needed to. It would have been nice to finish a little higher in the finish, but it was good race.”

Prior to the strong finish in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race, the team had a race against the clock.

Mantella Autosport spent six hours repairing the No. 8 to ensure it would not miss qualifying after damage suffered in a crash during the first practice. Being close to home paid off for the team as the crew made a trip back to its Toronto-based shop for parts.

Sawmill Creative killing it with the great photos, make sure to check out the event video!

Sawmill Creative killing it with the great photos, make sure to check out the event video!

Round 6 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge will take place July 24-25 at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Connecticut.

Round 5 action from CTMP will air at noon (ET) Sunday, July 19 on Fox Sports 1.

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MONTEREY, Calif. (May 2, 2015) – Mantella Autosport overcame slick track conditions and on-track incidents to finish Round 3 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge ninth and 16th before heading to a surprise wedding in Turn 8 of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

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CTSCC GS guarantees close, action packed racing

 

After the race, the team surprised crew member Joe Ferguson with a suit and explained his beautiful bride-to-be was waiting for him at the top of Mazda Raceway’s famous “Corkscrew” turn. Ferguson, who thought his wedding was to take place Monday, was swept off his feet by his bride, Clair Ferguson, who organized the surprise.

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One very special race day

 

The bride selected the Corkscrew as their wedding destination because Mazda Raceway is her now-husband’s favorite track and because of the venue’s breathtaking views.

“It was great to see a good friend so happy,” said owner and driver Anthony Mantella. “After a rough race day, we all needed a reason to relax and get our mind off of things. We’re a family here at Mantella Autosport, so it was an honor to be a part of their big day. We wish them nothing but the best; they’re both amazing people, and I know they’ll be very happy together.”

Joe Ferguson, you may now kiss your bride!

Joe Ferguson, you may now kiss your bride!

Prior to the wedding, Mantella Autosport reflected on its hectic race day that included both cars fighting to the finish.

“Thanks to the Mantella Autosport guys and Team Chevy for giving us a really strong Camaro Z/28.R,” Wilkins said. “It took a fair amount of abuse today. It was a little bit unfortunate with the incident. I feel bad for Martin (Barkey) and Kyle (Marcelli). We had a strong car, too.

Rolling speed through the cork screw, pre contact.

Rolling speed through the cork screw, pre contact.

“Obviously we fought a little bit of handling adversity with the damage, but we tried to stay out of trouble and get some points. The guys did a good job. We had good stops. We worked hard, and it’s another top-10. We want to move up the grid, so we just need to keep working.”

Andrew Wojteczko, lead engineer and engineer of the No. 8, looked past the early incident and concentrated on a race strategy to get the No. 8 back to the front of the field.

Strategy decisions and killer fast pit stops kept the 8 car on the lead lap despite the damage and repairs.

Strategy decisions and killer fast pit stops kept the 8 car on the lead lap despite the damage and repairs.

“Anthony did a great job on the start,” Wojteczko said. “We moved up from 13th to ninth and had the pace to stay there, so we were happy to see that. Unfortunately, we just had a moment, and the two team cars made contact, which is never what you want to see happen.

“My guys did such a great job recovering. I’m really, really pleased with how the team performed and stayed positive.”

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The race will be broadcast at 11 a.m. (ET) Sunday, May 17 on FOX Sports 1.

Team manager/engineer Andrew Wojteczko took part in the Twilight Charity bike ride and managed to complete the most laps in the event.

Andrew Wojteczko putting in the KM's, completing the most laps during the charity ride.

Andrew Wojteczko putting in the KM’s, completing the most laps during the charity ride.

Mantella Autosport’s next race will be the Continental Tire 150 at The Glen, a two-hour, 30-minute event. The race takes place in Watkins Glen, New York at Watkins Glen International.

The Mantella Autosport paddock is the perfect place to stop by and get an up close look at what a CTSCC GS car is made of.

The Mantella Autosport paddock is the perfect place to stop by and get an up close look at what a CTSCC GS car is made of.

For additional information regarding Mantella Autosport please contact megan@mantellaautosport.com

Catch the TV coverage on Fox Sports 1 April 5th 9:00AM to 11:00AM Eastern Time. Or stream on IMSA.COM

Catch the TV coverage on Fox Sports 1 April 5th 9:00AM to 11:00AM Eastern Time. Or stream on IMSA.COM

SEBRING, Fla. (March 20, 2015) – Mantella Autosport placed both its No. 8 and No. 80 Camaro Z/28.R cars in the top 10 of Round 2 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge on Friday at Sebring International Raceway.

The No. 80 of Kyle Marcelli and Martin Barkey finished fourth in the Microsoft Visual Studio 150 while the No. 8 of Anthony Mantella and Mark Wilkins finished seventh in the Grand Sport class.

 

Final setup checks on the pad.

Final setup checks on the pad.

At Sebring, Mantella Autosport Lead Engineer Andrew Wojteczko was hopeful the team’s call for two tires on the No. 8 would lead to a better result but was happy to collect the points from the 7th place finish.

“It’s an improvement coming from Daytona,” Wojteczko said. “Still good points there, but this is the direction we want to be going, and we keep trying to improve from here. I’m thrilled with everybody on the team; the guys really did a great job.

“Penalty-free, and that’s the key to succeeding in this series, no doubt.

Finding speed through data analysis and driver coaching

Finding speed through data analysis and driver coaching

“Setup on the 8 car, we just didn’t have it at the end. With our strategy, I was hoping to see a yellow in that last run, and it just didn’t work out. We did a short fuel and two tires trying to gain a bunch of track position, and it worked. But we really needed a yellow to make that car work to the end. But two top-10’s. Great for points, and I am really proud of the whole team.”

Moving up through the pack

Moving up through the pack

The No. 80 of Marcelli and Barkey, engineered by Sasha Anis, ran strong throughout the two-hour, 30-minute race. The car lost ground once when Barkey was pushed off track to avoid an incident.

“I had one little bobble coming into (Turn) 13,” Barkey said. “I was between a GS and an ST car, one of them found the left side of my car, and I just went off into the grass. I couldn’t save it, so I wanted to keep it one piece, let it run off the track and found the exit road back on. I lost one position in class, so not a big deal but not what we wanted. I lost some time but saved the car. Kyle and Sasha did a great job with the race. I’m really happy with our result.”

JKMD5673

Marcelli took the wheel from Barkey halfway through the race and entered in the 10th position. Marcelli led a steady charge to the front, but as the clock wound down he was forced to back off from third place to conserve fuel. But with a large-enough gap between his Camaro Z/28.R and the fifth-place car, he had a smooth ride to the finish line.

Ready for battle

Ready for battle

“It sure would have been nice to have Team Chevy a one-two-three (finish),” Marcelli said. “A one, two and a four is, I guess, second-best. I’m very pleased with Mantella Autosport. I’m very pleased with our Camaro Z/28.R. We’ve done a lot of testing here. And we’ve done a lot of testing on an old tire and a new tire, so we were really, really confident going into this race.

Hustling turn one

Hustling turn one

“Providing everything went well, I thought we were going to have a shot at a result, and it kind of worked out that way. I got in the car I think P9 or P10, and our strategy worked out actually quite well, and I had fresher tires than everyone in front of me. So I had to take advantage of that.

“When the race went green, we were really aggressive and made five spots on the first two laps. That got us to about P4, and then we just kind of held that position. For the last half an hour, we were on fuel conservation mode. We weren’t sure we were going to make it to the end, so I had a nice 10-second gap to the fifth-place car, and we just kind of went on cruise mode.”

Pit stop practice under way.

Pit stop practice under way.

The No. 8 of Mantella and Wilkins, like their teammates, had a strong start. But they had to fight to hold position at the end, with track temperatures soaring higher than 100 degrees and only two new tires. And Wilkins battled in the last minutes of the race, climbing up the running order while sliding around the slick, hot track.

“When I went out, we gambled a little on tires,” Wilkins said. “We took two instead of four to try to get some track position back. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the call we needed, but that was the call Andrew and I made together.

“We thought it would get us to where we needed to be, and we thought maybe we could hold them off. But it’s a hot day and we ran out of tires, and we just tried to hang on best we could to get good points. Anthony had a great stint; he did an awesome job. He ran right up near the front and had great pace, and just hat’s off to him.”

perfect placement

perfect placement

Team owner and driver Mantella started the race 11th and took the No. 8 Camaro Z/28.R straight to the front of the pack. Diligently weaving through traffic, Mantella spent most of his time at the front of the field, even leading the GS class.

Though the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge event was not an endurance race, the bumpy, 17-turn, 3.74-mile circuit is often tough enough on the car and driver to make it feel like one. Mantella felt energized about the performance of his entire team.

“This was definitely my strongest performance of the year, although it’s only the second race,” Mantella said. “My fitness is really good. If they gave me some new tires, I feel like I literally could have done a second stint. The car was great; the guys did an excellent job. Mark drove a great race, and Andrew did an incredible job, as well. Of course, congratulations are in order for Martin, Kyle and Sasha.”

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Mantella Autosport competes next in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge on May 2 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California.

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For more information on Mantella Autosport, visit mantellaautosport.com and follow the team socially on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.