It was the seventh of eight race weekends for the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama with a 21-car field racing at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca for the first time since 2016. Great weather made for exciting racing and a podium filled weekend for Kelly-Moss.
Race 1 of the weekend kicked off Saturday with De Angelis in the No. 79 Racing for Children’s Porsche, sponsored by Medical Properties Trust to benefit Children’s of Alabama, taking the lead after lap 1. De Angelis held this lead for many laps, but with 19 minutes left, was overtaken in Turn 11 still finishing second overall.
De Angelis was not the only Kelly-Moss driver at the seventh race of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge. Alan Metni, Kurt Fezekas, and David Brule also put down consistent lap times for Race 1, all excited and eager to come out faster for Race 2 on Sunday.
With just under 10 minutes remaining in Sunday’s 45-minute race, De Angelis took the lead coming out of Turn 5. He then pulled away before a full-course caution came out for an incident in Turn 3. Both drivers in the incident were evaluated and released from the care center, but the race ended under full-course caution, giving De Angelis his first victory since sweeping both races of the doubleheader at Road America last month. The victory enabled De Angelis to extend his lead to 58 points and secure his 10th win of the season.
“I think it was pretty important to get that one off my chest,” De Angelis said. “Max had a really good run there with three races in a row. We had a tire go in (Race 1 at) VIRginia and then I made a mistake myself in Race 2. Then, yesterday he just outpaced us. Coming into the weekend, I had never been here, and the guys had never with the Gen 2 GT3 Cup car. We put in a lot of work last night to figure out what the issues were from yesterday and clearly it paid off for us.”
In the Platinum Masters class, Alan Metni returned to victory lane in the No. 99 Kelly-Moss Porsche for the first time since Race 2 at Road America last month. Metni held the Platinum Masters lead throughout the race en route to his sixth class win of the season. It also allowed Metni to slightly extend his Platinum Masters points lead to 15.
“It’s great to be here,” Metni said. “Laguna’s a wonderful place. I love this track. I’m really, really happy that my daughters, Layla and Ava, and my wife, Meryl, came to watch me. It made it a perfect weekend, so I’m quite happy. I’ve made a couple of really large, unforced errors in the last few stops, and it was starting to bug me. It’s really nice to get all the way through a race without any losses in focus.”
NBCSN television coverage of the WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca weekend will air at 4 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Sept. 25.
Next up for the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama is the season-ending doubleheader at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta as part of the Motul Petit Le Mans event week on Oct. 9-12. The first race of the weekend is Thursday, Oct. 10 with the season finale set for Friday, Oct. 11.
If you’d like to learn more about “Racing for Children’s”, sponsored by Medical Properties Trust to benefit Children’s of Alabama, one of the leading pediatric medical centers in the U.S., and its medical research efforts to treat and cure every form of childhood cancer, please visit www.racingforchildrens.org.