GRAND-AM MRLS Doubleheader Disappoints for American DriverThere is no question that the setting and the weather were beautiful for the weekend's doubleheader GRAND-AM event at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca (MRLS) in Monterey, Calif. However, for Bryan Sellers, that was about all there was to write home about. The Braselton, Ga.-resident was scheduled to race Fall-Line Motorsports-prepared entries in both the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge (CTSCC) on Sunday morning and the Rolex Sports Car Series later in the day. A gearbox failure early in the CTSCC race kept Sellers from getting seat time in the No. 46 Trim-Tex Drywall Products/BCKSTGR Fall-Line Motorsports BMW M3 but the team rallied to take a ninth-place finish in the Rolex Series with the No. 46 BePositive.Org Audi R8 GRAND-AM.
Having qualified 16th in the CTSCC field, Sellers teammate Mark Boden (Winnetka, Ill.) had barely gotten started when the gearbox in the BMW began to give him issues. Since Boden entered the race fourth in GS class points, the team opted to make repairs on pit lane. When the work was completed, there was only time enough remaining in the two-hour, 30-minute race for Boden to take back to the track and complete his minimum drive time required to get points toward the championship. The Trim-Tex car finished 20th in class completing 33 of the 75 laps clocked by the winner.
Later in the day, Sellers prepared for the two-hour, 45-minute, Rolex Series Sports Car Festival race. This time co-driving with Al Carter (Greenville, Del.) in the Fall-Line Audi R8 Grand-Am. Carter qualified and started the car sixth. A yellow-flag fell 30-minutes into the race, perfect timing for the first pit stop and driver change and Sellers took over the V10-powered machine. After the stop, Sellers worked his way up to seventh before a second pit stop and subsequent penalty for excessive speed in pit lane dropped him back in the running order. He was able to rally up to ninth where the car would finish. It was Sellers' second time racing the Audi. He finished fifth at Kansas Speedway in his first attempt behind the wheel.
The broadcast of the CTSCC race will be shown on FOX Sports 1, Sunday September 15 at 4 p.m. ET.
Sellers will be back on track in the No. 17 Team Falken Tire Porsche 911 GT3 RSR on September 21 at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas. After the disappointment of not reaching the starting line at the most recent American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón race in Baltimore or getting to drive the Trim-Tex BMW at MRLS, Sellers is eager to stretch his legs on the 3.4-mile F1-facility.
On his weekend: "I think in weekends like this you have to evaluate the things you did
well on as well as the areas we missed. You have to be realistic and that also means seeing the positives. We were able to learn a lot about the Audi program and how to continue to improve it more for the future. The Fall-Line Audi showed some promise and some speed during the race, showing that our young program is making progress."
On the Rolex Series race: "The Rolex race was difficult. It was one of those races where things seemed to just go wrong. We tried our hardest to rebound from those mistakes and were able to stay on the lead lap but not really fighting with anyone for position. We had a very fast car that unfortunately we were just not able to take advantage of."
On the recent Balance of Performance (BoP) adjustment, a new rear splitter, given to the Audi R8 Grand-AM: "The BoP certainly helped. I don't think it made the car drastically faster however it made the drivability much better. I think Lime Rock will be a good race for the Audi. We need to make gains on tire degradation and find a way to make the overall stint average a little bit better but I think we're getting closer each time we turn a lap."
On the motivation for Lime Rock: "There is no extra motivation needed as we head into the final race of the season. I think everyone at Fall-Line will bounce back quickly. We need to end on a good note. We need to execute well with no mistakes, especially with the Trim-Tex BMW, so we can get Mark into a good position in the final points standings."
1 GT3 RSR on September 21 at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas. After the disappointment of not reaching the starting line at the most recent American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón race in Baltimore or getting to drive the Trim-Tex BMW at MRLS, Sellers is eager to stretch his legs on the 3.4-mile F1-facility.