Dempsey Racing determined to avenge narrow 2013 Laguna Seca loss
Patrick Dempsey and Andrew Davis set to turn the tables in No. 27 Dempsey Racing Porsche 911 GT America following last year’s last-lap pass and close second-place finish
Determined to avenge last year’s last-lap pass and close second-place finish in the IMSA ALMS GT Challenge (GTC) race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Dempsey Racing and team drivers Patrick Dempsey and Andrew Davis return for this weekend’s Monterey Grand Prix, May 3 – 4, looking for their first IMSA TUDOR United SportsCar Championship victory.
Dempsey earned a career-best second-place finish at Laguna Seca in last year’s all-Porsche GTC race but the runner-up placing was bittersweet as then teammate Andy Lally was crowded off the track and out of the lead in a one-lap dash to the finish.
With the GTC class basically folded into the IMSA TUDOR Championship’s new and multi-make GTD division, a victory in Sunday’s 120-minute sprint will be a challenge, but one the Dempsey Racing team can handle.
“It’s always good to get back to Laguna Seca,” Dempsey said. “It has been a longtime between races but fortunately I had a chance to test in Porsche Supercup in Germany and at Road Atlanta where we working on some brakes. So at least I have been getting into the car somewhat consistently even with such a huge gap between Sebring and this weekend’s race.”
Davis has taken over for Lally as Dempsey’s season-long co-driver in 2014 and joins his teammates in looking for a strong result at Laguna Seca.
"Laguna Seca is one of the great American race tracks and ranks very high on my list of favorites,” Davis said. “I've been competing at the track for nearly a decade and in that time I've had my share of great moments and heart breaks. I hope it is another great one come Sunday!"
More than a month break followed each of the opening rounds of the 2014 season at the Rolex 24 At Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring. Both races were particularly challenging for the majority of the Porsche 911 GTD America teams but Dempsey Racing did show some competitive consistency.
“Dempsey Racing has had great runs at Monterey in the past although we’ve narrowly missed out on winning here,” said Joe Foster, who co-drove with Dempsey and Davis at Daytona and Sebring. “Patrick and Andy even started the last lap of the IMSA event here last year in the lead only to be pushed off by a P2 car in Turn 4 on the last lap! This weekend we hope to build on the promise we’ve shown at Daytona and Sebring and have a solid finish. I’ll be watching from the timing stand this weekend which means I’ll be more nervous than behind the wheel!"
Laguna Seca has traditionally been a “Porsche track,” and the year’s first sprint race is also a welcome change.
"It feels like ages ago that we were in Sebring for our last event, and I'm beyond ready to get our No. 27 Dempsey Racing Porsche back on track,” Davis said. “There is always a certain excitement that comes along with getting back into our sprint race format. There are so many outside variables that play a role in the longer endurance races, but now we can put our heads down and move into attack mode."
A two-day event, the Continental Tire Grand Prix of Monterey begins with practice and qualifying on Saturday. Race-day Sunday starts with a 20-minute warm-up at 8 a.m. PDT for all IMSA TUDOR classes before the 10:15 a.m. PDT race start for the GTD/PC race.
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