Partial Reprint Cadillac Racing Pressroom
Saturday, July 29, 2017 Lexington, Ohio Cadillac V-Performance drivers Michael Cooper (Syosset, N.Y.) and Johnny O'Connell (Flowery Branch, Ga.) raced to second and third place finishes respectively in today's running of the Pirelli World Challenge Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio.
At the drop of the green on the long Mid-Ohio back straight Cooper in the Vector Blue No. 8 Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe slotted in behind the pole sitting and eventual winning McLaren of Alvaro Parente. Closely behind Cooper was his teammate O'Connell in the Velocity Red No. 3 Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe. The race was uneventful until a caution flew with just 18-minutes remaining. On the restart a lapped car was between Cooper and leader Parente,
"I don't know if we ran too many qualifying laps and hurt the rear tires, but the car was a handful," Cooper said. "I was hanging on out there, the car was loose on the rear tires. Johnny may have been a little faster, but I appreciate him running me clean and not making a move. We are going to stay up late tonight and make some adjustments for tomorrow. The Cadillac Racing guys will figure it out. I am happy with second today."which allowed the McLaren driver to seal the win and the Cadillac racing duo had to settle for second and third on the day.
The Pirelli World Challenge Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio race two will take the green flag at 12 p.m. ET tomorrow and will be televised on CBS Sports the same day at 2 p.m. ET. "We had a really good Cadillac today," O'Connell said. "I might have been able to play with the McLaren a little, but it wasn't worth taking a risk on getting by Michael and risking both cars. I am pleased with third and Michael taking second. I will be ready and if the car is as good tomorrow as it was today I can move up."
Sunday, July 30, 2017 Lexington, Ohio Cadillac V-Performance drivers Michael Cooper (Syosset, N.Y.) and Johnny O'Connell (Flowery Branch, Ga.) raced to seventh and eleventh place finishes respectively in today's running of the Pirelli World Challenge Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio.
Based upon their fast laps from yesterday's race, O'Connell started race two sixth with Cooper lining-up on the next row in seventh. The Cadillac racing drivers' fate was pretty much sealed on the opening lap. At the drop of the green Cooper in his Vector Blue No. 8 Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe was balked at the start and that allowed two competitors to get by him before the first turn. He got back on the throttle and came around the first lap in ninth positon. O'Connell was headed into the Key Hole running in fourth in his Velocity Red No. 3 Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe on the first lap when a Porsche got loose on the outside of him and then he got out of sorts and had a lazy spin onto the grass. He recovered in 22nd position and proceeded to make his way through the field posting the fast lap of the race. At the checker it was Cooper seventh and O'Connell 11th with Alvaro Parente in his McLaren taking his second win on the weekend.
"At the start it was like Long Beach all over again," Cooper said. "The Acura drove into a hole that wasn't there and I if I didn't lift he wrecks me and his teammate. They just went through that at Road America and we also saw some of that driving yesterday in the GTS race. If I don't lift there and save my championship hopes there is a huge crash. After that I struggled for some speed. We were able to put in a good lap in qualifying on Friday, but we had trouble translating that pace to the race. The Cadillac Racing guys will pour over the data and we will be ready for Utah."
"Unfortunately on the first lap the Porsche of Alec Udell got way out of shape on the outside than I got too far out of shape and then it was Road America all over again for me and I had to fight my way back through the field. I hope the fans enjoyed it. It is disappointing. This is all about points, it doesn't take much to lose it and make it up. Hats off to my engineer John Lankes and the crew they gave me a heck of a Cadillac today."
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