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

Posts tagged ‘Racing’

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.

Salt Lake City, Utah. (August 23, 2016) – Surrounded by stunning mountains and breathtaking sunsets, Picturesque Utah Motorsport Campus hosted the 8th event of the Pirelli World Challenge GTS season.

High Altitude at Utah Motorsport Campus

High Altitude at Utah Motorsport Campus

 

Why is this event different from the rest? Well it is the teams first professional win since it’s inaugural season in IMSA GS in 2014. Read on to find out more.

The elusive top stop, congratulations Anthony Mantella on your first pro win! Here's to many more!

The elusive top stop, congratulations Anthony Mantella on your first pro win! Here’s to many more!

The win at Utah marks the 3rd podium this season for the team in PWC GTS racing, and the first win. What’s more, Anthony Mantella drove a perfectly executed race to achieve this result, racing hard and smart. This was certainly not a one off, lucky victory, rather the start of a new chapter for Anthony Mantella, knowing he has the capability to run at the front. As often seen in many disciplines, the first win leads to many more to follow. Everyone at Mantella Autosport is thrilled to help continue this journey.

_c7d9726

Race 2 saw Anthony Mantella start P1, and Martin Barkey P3, when the lights went out on the standing start, both KTM XBow’s were still standing. The high grip surface found in Utah coupled with the hot rear tires hooked harder than expected resulting in both cars stalled on grid. Once re-started, it was only a short period before the boys were back in the hunt, and experiencing some fantastic door to door racing, ultimately resulting in Martin Barkey P6 and Anthony Mantella P8.

Race 2, Team Effort moving through the pack

Race 2, Team Effort moving through the pack

The team now heads to Sonoma for pre event testing before the 9th and penultimate round of the Pirelli World Challenge Championship September 14-18th.

#teammates

#teammates

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

Braselton, Georgia. (October 5th, 2015) – Mantella Autosport’s Kyle Marcelli and Martin Barkey brought the No. 80 MBRP Inc. Camaro Z/28.R to a 3rd place finish overall in October 2nd’s race while the No. 8 Gulf Liveried Camaro Z/28.R of Anthony Mantella and Mark Wilkins finished 5th at the season ending Road Atlanta race. Mantella Autosport is proud to congratulate Chevrolet on winning the Manufacturers Championship.

Camaro Z28.R Train

Camaro Z28.R Train

A mix of conditions during testing and practice allowed the team to prepare for an uncertain weather forecast for race day, honing in on ideal wet and dry setups. Despite a forecast calling for no precipitation during the 2.5 hour race, the actual conditions were anything but. Steady rain that increased in intensity while on the pre-grid forced a difficult tire decision for team engineer and strategist on the #80 car, Andrew Wojteczko. “I was confident based on the forecast that dry tires were the right choice as we went to grid, but the conditions leading up to the start had me doubting that decision. Turns out Ginger and Martin Barkey were having the same concerns and after some quick communication, I made the call to put both cars on wets.” It was a decision that proved to be instrumental to a successful opening stint for both Martin and Anthony, with them running in P3/P4 in the opening laps of the race. “I’m stoked to finish the season out with our teams first podium in CTSCC competition.” Said Andrew Wojteczko. “The team performed really well and did a great job getting the 8 car turned around after the damage following the practice incident. I’m really looking forward to what 2016 may bring, some exciting possibilities in the works.

Engineer Andrew Wojteczko making sure to hit target fuel consumption in the final stint.

Engineer Andrew Wojteczko making sure to hit target fuel consumption in the final stint.

Here’s what Martin had to say “I really enjoy racing at Road Atlanta, the track flows well and really pushes a driver to go 110% at all times. Fast corners and heavy brake zones combined with cold track conditions and rain would seem to be just what we needed to get our first podium of the season. Mantella Autosport prepped a great race car all week, when the rain came at the start of the race it was go time and we were prepared.

I would like to thank the entire Mantella Autosport race team for such a successful 2016 race season. This team always brings their best game to every race event. Thanks as well to Kyle Marcelli my co – driver and driving coach. Without the countless hours of data review and his drive to be the best prepared drivers we simply would not have had the results we did.” Martin Barkey drove a clean first stint bringing in a perfect car for Kyle Marcelli to race to the end.

Tension ran high during the closing moments while fighting to regain P2

Tension ran high during the closing moments while fighting to regain P2

“All year I’ve commented that I feel we have a team, car and drivers capable of racing up front. We have shown our speed on numerous occasions, but today we put it all together and the result reflected that.

The conditions were very challenging, and required everyone to bring their best effort. Mentally it was a demanding race that required every ounce of focus.

I’m proud of Mantella Autosport, they have proven to be a competitive, professional race team. Our race car reliability has been excellent all year thanks to hard work and preparation. For my teammate Martin Barkey, this year he has made big leaps in his development as a race driver. It’s been a pleasure to work with him, and watch his speed and confidence mature. His driving in the first stint of the race was impressive and played a key role in our result.” Said Kyle Marcelli

Kyle Marcelli in P2 leading the Stevenson Motorsport #6 car.

Kyle Marcelli in P2 leading the Stevenson Motorsport #6 car.

Hard earned champagne on the Podium

Hard earned champagne on the Podium

The 8 car also had a great run achieving a top 5 finish. Anthony Mantella drove a great first stint and had the following to say “What a way to close out the season. Martin drove a clean race with myself in tow. Right from the start I was impressed with our pace, racing up near the front. I’ve really come to enjoy racing in the rain. Racing the Continental Series has surely honed our skills as a team and we’re excited for what the future may hold.

Anthony Mantella watches Mark Wilkins close out the season after a spectacular starting drive in the challenging conditions.

Anthony Mantella following a spectacular starting drive, earning the hard charger award, watches on as Mark Wilkins closes out the season.

Mark Wilkins found “Road Atlanta proved to be a week of highs and lows for the 8 car. The Mantella Autosport Crew prepped a great car for Anthony and I and testing went well. Andrew rolled an excellent car off the trailer for us and the Road Atlanta circuit provided all smiles thanks to its awesome flow. Unfortunately, we suffered a setback on Thursday when Anthony was sent into the wall by an ST car that missed his braking zone. Many thanks to Joe, Lionel and the entire Mantella crew for repairing the car and getting it back on track so we could race! Anthony did an awesome job keeping the car up front in very tricky conditions. All in all, a fifth place finish is a good result to end the season with and many congrats to our sister car for a great podium effort! Many thanks to Anthony for the opportunity to race alongside him and to Andrew for running a fantastic program. Super proud of Mantella Autosport!”

8 car back on track and racing hard after post practice repairs.

8 car back on track and racing hard after post practice repairs.

Be sure to follow Mantella Autosport on Facebook and Instagram for the most up to date information on the team and plans for 2016.

It definitely didn't dry up like the forecast said it would.

It definitely didn’t dry up like the forecast said it would.

Austin, Texas. (September 21, 2015) – Mantella Autosport’s Kyle Marcelli and Martin Barkey brought the No. 80 MBRP Inc. Camaro Z/28.R to a sixth-place finish overall in September 18th’s race and marked the return of the #8 Gulf Liveried Camaro Z/28.R of Anthony Mantella and Mark Wilkins to IMSA CTSCC competition at the Circuit of the Americas.

Two MA team cars back in action at COTA.

Two MA team cars back in action at COTA.

The lack of a promoter test day limited the potential to make multiple setup changes. Following practice 1 it was immediately clear that despite being an extremely smooth surface, tire degradation in the texas heat was severe at the 3575lb IMSA mandated base weight (plus fuel/driver) and a setup change was made on both the #8 and #80 Camaro for practice #2.

Sawmill Creative getting the great shots as usual

Sawmill Creative getting the great shots as usual

“COTA proved to be a challenging race in many ways. As always the competition in the CTSCC was very strong with all teams, drivers and cars bringing their best performance. The heat introduced another element of challenge as the 100 degree plus temperatures took a toll on us drivers. My co-driver Martin Barkey drove one of his best qualifying performances to date and executed a clean race stint.

Martin Barkey starting P9 after a well executed qualification.

Martin Barkey starting P9 after a well executed qualification.

My double race stint was exciting and challenging. We made our way to P4 before getting spun in turn 13 which dropped us back to P11. Ultimately, that ruined our chances of a podium. We had to fight hard with multiple cars that have more straight line speed to work our way back to P5, and unfortunately pushed too hard and wore out our rear tires. With the heat and lack of rear tire grip, it was difficult to manage the pace we needed in the closing laps. We lost one position to finish P6.

I’m very proud of Mantella Autosport. The guys worked hard to fix some gearbox issues we were having before qualifying. They once again prepared a reliable, quick race car for Martin and I to compete with. I’m looking for to Road Atlanta and with a little luck spraying some champagne.” Said Kyle Marcelli.

Kyle Marcelli aced the first restart to gain two positions.

Kyle Marcelli aced the first restart to gain two positions.

Co Driver Martin Barkey felt “It was a roller coaster race to say the least. After battling slick track conditions during practice sessions we found a good set up for the race that would allow us to be competitive.The entire race found both Kyle and I battling for position. Pushing hard yet trying to keep keep tires on the car seemed to be the job at hand. Kyle Marcelli ran a super strong race working his way up to P4 before being spun by a competitor.I think we had a chance to once again fight for a podium, finishing P6 just seems to be coming up short. We are hoping for a good clean race at Atlanta. with a little luck on our side we might just net the podium position we are capable of.

Mantella Autosport crew executed exceptionally well in the pit.

Mantella Autosport crew executed exceptionally well in the pit.

“It was great to be back in the 8 car and back on track with the Mantella Autosport guys. It was a tough weekend. Unfortunately, we had to retire the car due to an issue with the cooling system and subsequent overheating.  I felt we had a very well balanced car and many thanks to Andrew Hall for his engineering expertise. Anthony drove a strong first stint and had a great start. Thanks to the Mantella Autosport crew who are working hard to get the Z28R prepped for the final race of the season at Road Atlanta. I love this track and can’t wait to end the season on a high note.” Said Mark Wilkins. Unfortunately a ruptured coolant hose ultimately lead to the demise of the LS7 power plant prior to the 2.5 hour mark, though still scoring points for completing greater than 70% of the race.

4 tires and fuel for Mark Wilkins.

4 tires and fuel for Mark Wilkins.

Team Owner Anthony Mantella stated “It was great to have the whole team together in Texas.  Coming to COTA was really just practice to get us back in shape after two missed races. Mark and I really like Road Atlanta And we would love to podium there. With a freshened car we’ll be ready to compete then move on to a different series and hopefully not have to endure the BOP problems associated with IMSA CTSCC racing.

Anthony Mantella focused and ready to race despite extremely hot conditions. Regular training helps cope with the extreme temperatures.

Anthony Mantella focused and ready to race despite extremely hot conditions. Regular training helps cope with the extreme temperatures.

The team now prepares at the legendary T1 Race Development location in Dallas Texas (home of the T1r 2165WHP Nissan GTR) prior to sending the rig to Road Atlanta for the final race of the year October 2nd 2015. Be sure to catch the COTA race broadcast on Fox Sports or at IMSA.com in the days to come. Be sure to keep up to date by following the Mantella Autosport Facebook and Instagram pages.

The immediately recognizable COTA tower. A great place to take in the race action from.

The immediately recognizable COTA tower. A great place to take in the race action from.

LAKEVILLE, Conn. (July 27, 2015) – Mantella Autosport’s Kyle Marcelli and Martin Barkey wielded the No. 80 MBRP Inc. Camaro Z/28.R to a sixth-place finish overall July 25 at Lime Rock Park.

_WML1264

The IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race featured few yellow flags and short cautions, a rarity on the 1.5-mile, technical course. The short track provided the teams with little room for error; one lap could be completed in less than a minute, with speeds over 100 mph.

pre event track walk, helps reveal the small details about a track that can make a big difference in lap time.

pre event track walk, helps reveal the small details about a track that can make a big difference in lap time.

Barkey spent most of his race dueling with the No. 99 Aston Martin of Rob Ecklin Jr. and former teammate Brett Sandberg in the Grand Sport class. Barkey and Ecklin parried back and forth, stealing position from one another, through the majority of Barkey’s one-hour stint.

staged and ready for a 2 hour, 40 car run around the bull ring

staged and ready for a 2 hour, 40 car run around the bull ring

Due to the lack of cautions, Barkey was forced to pit for a driver change and fuel under green flag racing.

The CTSCC Fan walk is always well attended, Martin Barkey and Kyle Marcelli signing autographs for the fans.

The CTSCC Fan walk is always well attended, Martin Barkey and Kyle Marcelli signing autographs for the fans.

“I had a great time battling the 99 Aston,” Barkey said. “Rob and I traded places for most of the entire stint. It was nice, clean racing between classes, the GS cars and ST (Street Tuner) cars, with no issues, which made for an overall good race.

“The Continental Tires held up fine. We ended up with a car with too much understeer overall, so had to drive accordingly. The Camaro handled this track well. It is heavy and it is tall, yet we were able to run a good, clean, respectable race. The Mantella Autosport team is top-shelf; they prepared a great car for us today.”

 

Cresting the jump requires a lift of the throttle to manage wheel spin.

Cresting the jump requires a lift of the throttle to manage wheel spin.

Marcelli took over for Barkey after the one-hour mark of the two-hour event. He exited the pits 20 seconds behind the leader, but a late caution came out with 15-minutes left in the race to level the playing field.

Marcelli contended for the lead in the GS class but was unable to get around the Ford Shelby cars, which dominated the second half of the race. Marcelli dealt with understeer through his stint, making the Camaro more difficult to drive in the corners.

It was a one stop race, driver change, 4 tires and fuel at the 57 minute mark.

It was a one stop race, driver change, 4 tires and fuel at the 57 minute mark.

“Overall, it was a clean, well-driven and well-executed race for us,” Marcelli said. “The Mantella Autosport team was at the top of their game all weekend. Martin did a super job in the opening stint. He drove smart and showed confidence.

“My stint was a bit lonely for the first 45 minutes, being that our pit stop was under green flag racing. The caution was our best chance to move forward. However I just didn’t have anything for the leaders. I tried many different lines and driving techniques, but ultimately it was not enough. We ended the day with good points and will continue to push forward during the balance of the season.”

8 car had to go behind the wall for repairs after an st car had brake issues and made contact bending rear suspension components.

8 car had to go behind the wall for repairs after an st car had brake issues and made contact bending rear suspension components. Lionel channing getting his sweat on while working hard to get the 8 car back in the race.

The No. 8 Gulf Oil Camaro Z/28.R of Anthony Mantella and Mark Wilkins finished 11th in the GS class after contact early in the race from an ST car caused damage.

The No. 8 returned to the garage for repairs after the collision. The diligent work of the Mantella Autosport crew returned the No. 8, Mantella and Wilkins back to the race. But with very few cautions, the No. 8 car re-entered 38 laps down from the lead and was unable to make up the lost position.

Sawmill Creative killing it as always with the awesome photos and video. Event video to follow shortly.

Sawmill Creative killing it as always with the awesome photos and video. Event video to follow shortly.

Lead Engineer Andrew Wojteczko was proud to see his drivers shine through the adversity faced. Wojteczko focused on the points championship and where his drivers stood after Lime Rock Park. Mantella stands sixth in the driver championship while Marcelli and Barkey stand seventh and Wilkins stands ninth after missing Watkins Glen due to a conflicting race.

Stunning.

Stunning.

“Martin ran a great race,” Wojteczko said. “He was able to give me the hour stint I needed to keep us on the lead lap. It’s exciting to see a significant progression in performance compared to last year’s pace. The yellow flag did bunch everyone up for Kyle, but the understeer didn’t allow him to bring the fight at the end. The guys executed the steps really well, I’m proud of all the guys.”

Watkins Glen, N.Y. (June 27, 2015) – The No. 8 and No. 80 of Mantella Autosport finished in the top 10 Saturday in the Continental Tire 150 at Watkins Glen International despite racing in heavy rain.

Full wet setup and ready to race. Based on the radar there was no question this was going to be a wet race.

Full wet setup and ready to race. Based on the radar there was no question this was going to be a wet race.

The No. 8 Gulf Oil Camaro Z/28.R of Anthony Mantella and Sasha Anis finished eighth after starting 10th while the No. 80 MBRP Inc. Camaro Z/28.R of Martin Barkey and Kyle Marcelli finished ninth after starting 12th, both in the Grand Sport class.

Only two practice sessions and then qualifying meant the pre event testing was more valuable than ever.

Only two practice sessions and then qualifying meant the pre event testing was more valuable than ever.

Round 4 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge took place under challenging conditions, with constant rainfall that induced spins and wall contact by many cars.

The rain and chaos limited green-flag racing. There was only one green lap in the last our of the two-hour, 30-minute race. A red flag was thrown with 30 minutes left in the race, as cars were parked for 17 minutes in the pit. The red flag was followed with a 13-minute caution period to the checkered flag.

Staged for qualifying

Staged for qualifying

Both the No. 8 and No. 80 Camaro Z/28.R ran clean races with fast pace, avoiding all on-track incidents.

Barkey was held up behind another GS-class car and was pushed deep in the field behind cars in the Street Tuner class. He maneuvered through the ST traffic, regaining position near the top of the GS class quickly.

The rain didn't let up at any point during the 2.5 hour race, ultimately leading to IMSA intervening and shutting down the fun.

The rain didn’t let up at any point during the 2.5 hour race, ultimately leading to IMSA intervening and shutting down the fun.

“It is fun racing here at Watkins Glen at any time,” Barkey said. “I really enjoyed my time in the Camaro Z/28.R. Unfortunately in the class split, there was a GS car that wouldn’t advance and kept me back.

“It’s a little disappointing to see a race like that where we showed good pace. Both Kyle and Sasha had some of the quickest pace out there toward the end. It would have been an exciting finish.”

Running the rain line. Out wide and off of the concrete.

Running the rain line. Out wide and off of the concrete.

Team Owner Mantella was proud of the hard work and dedication Mantella Autosport showed over the weekend. Mantella’s personal hard work shined under heavy cloud cover as he skillfully maneuvered the wet 11-turn, 3.4-mile circuit and traffic.

“It was a great race,” Mantella said. “Our Camaro Z/28.R was awesome. I’d never raced it at the this track in the rain, and after 10 laps I felt invincible in the car and could really go flat out of the apexes to catch the other cars. The team did a great job.

The team has a few Andrew's, in order from left to right, Andrew Hall, Andrew Wojteczko, Andrew Stittle

The team has a few Andrew’s, in order from left to right, Andrew Hall, Andrew Wojteczko, Andrew Stittle

“I would have liked to see a green flag at the end. It was disappointing, yet another decision surrounding this event that set us back, starting with the BoP adjustment before the race. We eat, sleep, drink and love this sport: All we want is a chance to show our true capabilities on a properly balanced playing field. But in the end, Chevy finished on top, and that’s all that matters.”

Lead Engineer Andrew Wojteckzo echoed Mantella’s thoughts on the team’s work ethic but was disappointed his drivers and crew didn’t receive more time to show their capabilities.

Kyle Marcelli showing a well known Porsche how it's done in the rain.

Kyle Marcelli showing a well known Porsche how it’s done in the rain.

“I’m happy with the two top-10 finishes,” Wojteckzo said. “Unfortunately, the eighth- and ninth-place finishes doesn’t really reflect what we had today. The setup for the rain was spot-on, and the drivers did an awesome job. We could see it in the lap times, and we had some of the fastest cars on track.

“We were hoping for an opportunity to show that. I guess mixed emotions. It was incredibly frustrating to watching the time tick down toward the end and just realizing we weren’t going to get the opportunity.”

It was a challenge keeping anything dry.

It was a challenge keeping anything dry.

No. 80 co-driver Marcelli and No. 8 co-driver Anis received the least amount of green-flag racing. They participated in the second half of the race, which included long, continuous caution periods.

“In a nutshell, I was frustrated with how the last 40 minutes ran under yellow,” Marcelli said. “For us, we’re a Pro-Am lineup, and our chance to race up front comes in the last hour of the race. Our starting driver’s job is to hand off the car in good condition, on the lead lap and in decent position. Then we try to race our way to the front in the end. Having run the last 40 minutes under yellow, we just didn’t receive the opportunity to do that.

Anthony Mantella ready to run a clean race despite challenging conditions.

Anthony Mantella ready to run a clean race despite challenging conditions.

“Our pace was really good. I understand that just prior the yellow both the 8 car and the 80 car were two of the quicker cars on track, running in the (2:) 25’s in the wet. The car was really good; I had a lot of fun. Frustrated with how the end of the race played out, though.”

Anis shared similar sentiments.

“From where we were starting from, we wanted to make up some positions,” Anis said. “The yellows didn’t come at the right time for us for us to kind of attack. The end of the race, the last 30 minutes would have been a great time to attack, and IMSA just decided to not let us race those last 30 minutes. We didn’t get to see where we would end up, but I guess the car’s in one piece so we can look at it that way.”

Mantella Autosport hosted tech talks with Corvette and Camaro fans were well received.

Mantella Autosport hosted tech talks with Corvette and Camaro fans were well received.

Mantella Autosport’s next race will be at its home track of Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario. The Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge weekend will take place July 9-12.

Caledon Ontario, (September 20th 2014). The Mantella Autosport, No.8 Powered by Spyder/Gulf lubricants Aston Martin Vantage qualified well, unfortunately first lap contact necessitated a behind the wall repair before resuming.

Great view from the tower

Great view from the tower

Hot and humid conditions with severe rain storms best described COTA 2014 with temperatures exceeding 42 degrees C with the humidex factored in. Pre-event analysis and setup work resulted in a fast Aston Martin Vantage right off the transporter, especially important at an event with only two practice sessions before qualification.

The red white and blue of COTA

The red white and blue of COTA

Anthony Mantella continued to improve his qualification posting a season best 12th place after completing only two timed laps. ” I knew I had to get it done in the first two laps to make sure I had the best possible tires to start the race.” Continental GS rules require cars to start the race on 3 of their 4 qualification tires. “It’s encouraging looking at the data, there was a top 6 qualification between the two laps so I’m just going to keep working at improving my consistency and the results will come.” Said Anthony Mantella

Team drivers Anthony Mantella and Mark Wilkins

Team drivers Anthony Mantella and Mark Wilkins

Unfortunately race day visions of greatness were quickly dissolved following contact in the first corner that left the Aston stranded on the side of the track. The team stayed positive and quickly got to work as soon as receiving the car back from the flat bed. A new tie rod, minor body repair, MAF sensor repair and an alignment and the car was back on track with Mark Wilkins at the wheel.

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Mark Wilkins.

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Mark Wilkins.

“The car was a blast to drive in the mixed conditions, we pitted for wets half way through my stint and managed to climb back to 18th place at the chequer. The balance of the car was fantastic and the team did a great job getting it fixed up and back out. It was easy to manipulate between under/oversteer and confidence inspiring at the limit. It’s always a great feeling when you’re made aware you’re running the fastest current times of the session over the radio. I know we’ll be strong again in Atlanta and can’t wait to get back behind the wheel.” Said Mark Wilkins.

Jake Media with the great shots as always!

Jake Media with the great shots as always!

“I’m very pleased with the performance of our team” said Andrew Wojteckzo. “The guys do a great job and I know without any doubt our drivers are getting in the best prepared car on track for every session. Unfortunately contact is a part of the sport and you’re not always able to show your true potential. Everyone executed perfection on the tasks that they could control and that’s all I can ask for.” JKMD9818

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

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

Caledon Ontario, (August 9th 2014). The Mantella Autosport, No.8 Powered by Spyder/Gulf lubricants Aston Martin Vantage overcomes challenges to achieve a strong result.

JKMD2853

Photos courtesy Jake Media

2014 has been a challenging season so far. Following an engine issue at Mosport, the team attempted to install the spare only to find a cracked cylinder head, a result of not fully draining the cooling system prior to air freighting from the UK to Canada. As luck would have it, with two engines in need of repair to make the quickly approaching Brickyard race, Prodrive was in the middle of relocating their engine service shop. This resulted in missing the Indy race and almost missing Road America, almost.

JKMD3164

With help from TRG’s Debra Buckler and the amazing freight services of First-Air and Shuttle Freight, the team took delivery of a refreshed engine late Saturday August 2nd. Sunday was spent reassembling the car, Monday morning with OnPoint on the dyno then off to the local track TMP to ensure everything was performing to spec. A successful test Monday afternoon allowed Andrew Stittle to Frappe’ la rue, and make it in time for move in at Road America.

JKMD3552

3rd fastest lap of the race.

The promoter test day was put to good use, allowing Anthony Mantella to apply what he learned in his Chump Car debut race at Road America earlier in the year where he earned a hard fought 3rd place finish. It was clear time spent working on chassis and setup improvements paid dividends when team mate Mark Wilkins found himself P1 in the first official practice, well done Mark!

JKMD3342

Anthony Mantella, dedicated to his craft and always improving, always hungry for more.

Anthony found some traffic in qualifying but managed a respectable P13 in the highly competitive CTSCC GS field.

JKMD5193

The Mantella Autosport Aston Martin Vantage is always a crowd favourite on the pre race Fan Walks! Your chance to get up close with the cars and drivers.

Mantella started the race on row 7 and showed good pace early in the 2.5 hour race. “Just before our first pit stop, the right side safety net released unexpectedly.” Said Anthony.  A temporary repair was done on the net during the pit stop to get Mark Wilkins out and stay on the lead lap. Unfortunately race officials refused the repair forcing another stop to reassemble the net, forcing the team to go down a lap. With a never give up attitude, Mark Wilkins posted 3rd fastest lap of the race and started the charge up the leader board. A full course yellow allowed the team to take advantage of the “Lap Down Wave By” procedure and got Mark back on the lead lap in P18 at the restart with 30 minutes to go.

JKMD3474

IMSA does a great job achieving competitive parity amongst the many different marques competing.

“The last 30 minutes at Road America were intense.” Said Anthony Mantella “Mark drove from 18th to 11th. It was a great drive for Mark. I only wish we could have got him better track position for that run, I am sure the results would have been great”

JKMD3331

Mark Wilkins, always fast.

The Mantella Autosport team continues to build on the lessons learned at each stop of the 2014 CTSCC season. Road America reaffirmed the Mantella Autosport program has the pace needed to run at the front and great results are within reach. 3 events to go and time to show what we can do.

 

Next Stop: VIR – Virginia International Raceway. See the race Live on IMSA.com Saturday August 23rd at 2:00PM

Tour De Road America completed!

Tour De Road America completed!

Team members Andrew Wojteczko and Andrew Stittle completed the Tour De Road America, a 2 hour bicycle race around the famed Road America circuit in support of the Austin Hatcher foundation. 9 laps completed and over 2600 calories burned.

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

 

JKMD4488

Spyder apparel, the best in the business, on the slopes or at the track.