- Eversley, Smithson race to third-place finish
- LA Honda World rally to top 10 after on-track incident
It was another podium finish in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge series for the Atlanta Speedwerks team, with the #94 Honda Civic Type R TCR of Ryan Eversley and Scott Smithson finishing third today in the Mid-Ohio 120 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
Eversley entered the weekend in second place in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge point standings, following second and seventh-place finishes in the opening two rounds of the championship.
Today's third place for Eversley, alongside new co-driver Smithson, solidifies the long-time Honda racer as a championship contender in 2021.
Eversley and Smithson's Atlanta Speedwerks teammate, Brian Henderson set the fastest time in TCR qualifying in the #84 Honda Civic Type R TCR but unfortunately lost the time following post-qualifying tech inspection. Starting in the 15th spot, Henderson and co-driver Robert Noaker pushed through a broken front splitter to finish 11th at the flag.
The LA Honda World entry of Mat Pombo and Mike LaMarra started on the front row, and looked set for a top-five finish in their #73 Civic Type R TCR, before being forced off track with less than an hour left in the race. The incident required an extra stop for repairs, but the #73 team rallied to cross the line eighth after the two-hour race.
The VGMC entry of Victor Gonzalez and Ruben Iglesias started the race 14th and brought their #88 Honda Civic Type R TCR car home in the 13th position.
Mid-Ohio 120 Honda TCR Race Results
- 3rd - #94 Ryan Eversley and Scott Smithson, Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR
- 8th - #73 Mat Pombo and Mike LaMarra, LA Honda World Honda Civic Type R TCR
- 11th - #84 Robert Noaker and Brian Henderson, Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR
- 13th - #88 Victor Gonzalez and Ruben Iglesias, VGMC Racing Honda Civic Type R TCR
- Ryan Eversley (#94 Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR), finished third: "I was thinking about the [championship] points at the start of my stint, because I think we were around eighth when I took over and it's so hard to pass here. Plus the TCR field is really balanced at the moment. So, I had to make sure I didn't run into anyone and get a penalty while still staying near the #77 that we're battling in the points. When I got to the Audi I was able to get by, and then I got to the back of the Hyundai and waited for him to make a mistake in order to get by. And then at the end we got traffic that allowed me to get up and onto the podium. I had to be really patient through the stint, which is never easy for a driver! But our Honda rotated through the corners so well today, I was able to keep the tires under us and we were one of the fastest cars, even at the very end of the race. I think we could have been even higher up if we had more time and less GS traffic. But, I'm really happy for our team and for Scott [Smithson], it's his first podium in IMSA. To be the top Honda, and on the podium at Mid-Ohio, is always great."
- Scott Smithson (#94 Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR), finished third: "It feels really good to get this result. Honestly, it's been a lot for me to take in all at once— coming from SRO and having just one season there. Driver changes are new to me, IMSA is new to me, Mid-Ohio is new to me, so there's been a lot to learn, but it's been awesome. The car felt great. I still have to clean up some race craft stuff on my end, but Ryan [Eversley] was able to bring it home and fantastic to be on the podium."
The MICHELIN Pilot Challenge next travels to Watkins Glen International June 24-26 for the four-hour Tioga Downs 240. The race can be streamed live on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.
HPD has three ready-to-race Civic models for touring car competition. The line starts with the affordable and reliable Civic Si TCA race car, then leads to the Civic Type R TC racer that puts legendary Type R performance on track, and culminates with the no-compromise, championship-winning Civic Type R TCR race car. Our unparalleled trackside support at every level from HPD engineers is a unique benefit that no other manufacturer can offer. Find out more about these cars and our touring programs at: https://hpd.honda.com/Motorsports/Touring
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