Hargrove Closes In On Porsche Canada Crown
BOWMANVILLE, Ontario – The ultimate finish line is in sight for Scott Hargrove after he earned his fifth victory of the Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Michelin season Saturday at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
Hargrove only needs to start the season-ending round 10 Sunday to clinch the Platinum Cup (2014 car models) season championship in the No. 69 OpenRoad Racing Porsche.
“It was kind of a perfect race from a driver’s standpoint,” Hargrove said. “I started on pole, got the lead on the start and was able to pull a gap early on and then just kind of maintain the gap for the rest of the race. Phenomenal result for these guys. I am thrilled to be here and can’t wait to finish off the championship tomorrow.”
Hargrove led the 45-minute race from the pole to the checkered flag, as he has finished first or second in all nine events this season. The race ended under caution due to contact between Platinum Masters competitors Perry Bortolotti and Carlos de Quesada with six minutes remaining in the race.
Chris Green finished second in the No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche to sustain his slim championship hopes. Green trails Hargrove by 18 points. The winner of each race earns 20 points.
Spencer Pigot finished third in the No. 21 Alegra Motorsports entry. Marco Cirone placed fourth and was the first Platinum Masters (drivers age 45 and older) finisher in the No. 88 Mark Motors Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car. De Quesada continued after the late incident with Bortolotti to round out the top five in the No. 22 Alegra Motorsports Porsche.
Hargrove eased away from Pigot and Green early in the race, maintaining a gap of around one second. Pigot passed Green for second in turn one on the first lap, and Green needed to regain the spot to keep his title hopes alive.
Green pulled off that crucial pass with 25 minutes remaining on the 10-turn, 2.459-mile (3.957 km) circuit. But he never got a chance to threaten Hargrove, who led by 1.899 seconds at the halfway point of the race
Hargrove extended that lead to 3.202 seconds with 17 minutes remaining. Green sliced the gap to 2.350 seconds with 13 minutes left but never approached Hargrove until the field was bunched under the race-ending caution period with six minutes remaining.
“Those guys were definitely quick, and I had to push for the whole race,” Hargrove said. “The OpenRoad Porsche was so good. I was able to run consistent lap times all race long, matching my best lap of the race even at the end.”
Cirone earned his fifth Platinum Masters win of the season and only needs to start the race Sunday to clinch his second consecutive championship in the class for drivers age 45 and older. Tim Sanderson edged closer to his first Gold Cup championship with his third victory of the season in the No. 07 Alegra Motorsports/Northwest Atlantic Motorsports Porsche. Chuck Harris cruised to his eighth victory in nine rounds this season in Silver Cup (2005½-2009 car models) in the No. 50 Alegra Motorsports Porsche.
Scott Hargrove, Christopher Green, Spencer Pigot, Marco Cirone, Tim Sanderson, Jerimy Daniel, Etienne Borgeat, Carlos De Quesada, Ilker Starck, Andre Belzile, Shaun McKaigue, Martin Harvey, Chuck Harris, Keith Bass, Perry Bortolotti.