Ford Nears GS Championship With Multimatic Motorsports

In Friday’s Continental Tire Challenge Finale At Road AtlantaFreedom Autosport Mazda Leads Pair Of Porsches In ST Battle Multimatic Motorsports is closing in on its third Grand Sport (GS) team championship in the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, with Scott Maxwell and Billy Johnson seeking their sixth victory of the season in Friday’s Road Atlanta 150 co-driving the No. 15 Ford Shelby GT350R-C.Victory in the recent Circuit of The Americas 150 extended Multimatic’s lead to 31 points, meaning Maxwell will secure his third career title by driving for 45 minutes, the minimum time required to score points. It would be the first championship in the series for Johnson, who has added motivation in that a 23rd career victory would make him the leading winner in series history, breaking a tie with Matt Plumb.“Obviously, winning the championship would be huge to reward all the hard work Multimatic and Ford Performance put into the GT350R-C in its first full season of racing,” Johnson said. “It would be awesome and a huge accomplishment [to be the leading career winner in the series], and it’s definitely something we’re going to try to do this weekend.”Maxwell also leads the series with five TOTAL Pole Awards. The team opened the season by winning at Daytona, and added consecutive victories at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Lime Rock Park and Road America before their Texas triumph. Rounding out their season were a pair of second and fourth-place finishes.CJ Wilson Racing will field a pair of Porsches at Road Atlanta. The No. 33 ONE Capital Management/ Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport for Danny Burkett and Marc Miller will be joined this weekend by the No. 35 Safecraft/New Balance Porsche driven by Tyler McQuarrie and Till Bechtolsheimer. Burkett and Miller gave the team its first GS victory at Road America. They are second in the standings, trailing the Multimatic Motorsports duo 295-264.Another Porsche to watch is the No. 12 Bodymotion Racing Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport. Trent Hindman and Cameron Cassels won three races earlier in the year and have six podium finishes, ranking third in the standings despite missing the season opener at Daytona. Hindman was the 2015 winner at Road Atlanta, joining Ashley Freiberg in the No. 46 Fall-Line Motorsports BMW M3.McAleer, McCumbee Hold Lead In Topsy-Turvy ST BattleChad McCumbee and Stevan McAleer captured the lead in the Street Tuner (ST) standings with a seventh-place finish in the Circuit of The Americas 150 in the No. 25 Freedom Autosport Mazda MX-5.Spencer Pumpelly and Nick Galante came to Texas with a healthy lead in the championship, but mechanical problems in the opening minutes resulted in the No. 17 RS1 Legistics/ Porsche Cayman finishing 21st. They slipped to second in the standings, trailing the Mazda duo by eight points, 241-233.Jeff Mosing and 2014 ST champion Eric Foss won at Austin to storm back into contention in the No. 56 Murillo Racing/Mosing Motorcars Porsche Cayman. They are third in the standings, 10 points behind the leaders.C360R is the defending ST winner of the Road Atlanta, with Paul Holton and Kyle Gimple sharing the No. 75 Audi S3.“We were very aggressive on our strategy last year,” said Holton, who now co-drives the No. 76 Ford Shelby GT350R-C with Pierre Kleinubing for C360R in the GS class. “We decided to start the race on slick tires, and we went from 17th to second in two laps. As soon as I pitted, we put Kyle in the car on rain tires, and we absolutely walked away from there.”NOTEBOOKMultimatic Motorsport won GS titles in 2002 (then known as Doncaster Racing) and 2005. Maxwell won the 2002 championship, winning four races with David Empringham. He also shared the 2008 title with Joe Foster for Hyper Sport Racing. Ford – which holds a three-point lead over Porsche in the manufacturer standings, 303-300, won titles in 2005, 2008 and 2009.Rebel Rock Racing will run in GS for the second time this season, fielding the No. 6 Porsche 911 for Casey Carden and Ethan Low. Carden, a native and resident of Braselton, Georgia, will be racing in the series for the second time, finishing 11th in ST for Rebel Rock a year ago at Road Atlanta. Low will be racing in GS for the first time after running with MINI JCW and Alara Motorsports in ST this season.Mark Pombo’s No. 37 MINI JCW will be crewed by four military veterans in the Road Atlanta 150. The car will be co-sponsored by Hire Heroes USA. Army veterans Danny Gordon, Blake Cash and Marsha Dickerson will be joined by Navy vet Ryan Blowers on the car co-driven by Pombo and Nate Norenberg. The MINI JCW team placed all three cars in the top 10 at Texas, and finished second at Road Atlanta last year in the debut of the No. 73 driven by Mat Pombo and Derek Jones.Headquartered just north of Atlanta, Hire Heroes USA has built a national reputation of excellence for helping veterans find jobs, currently at the rate of more than 100 vets confirmed hired every week. The company provides services at no cost to any U.S. military member, veteran or spouse transitioning to the work force.Aurora Strauss is set for her second start in the Continental Tire Challenge, joining Justin Piscitell in the No. 18 RS1 Porsche Cayman. She made her debut for RS1 earlier this season, finishing eighth with Piscitell at Watkins Glen.Continental Tire Challenge practice begins on Wednesday at 2:35 p.m. ET. qualifying is set for Thursday at 4:45 p.m. The two-hour, 30-minute Road Atlanta 150 will take the green flag on Friday at 12:25 p.m. The race will be streamed live on and the IMSA mobile app at 12:25 p.m. ET, and will be broadcast on FS1 at 11 a.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 9.