Posted on June 30, 2021 Tags: Watkins Glen
Images courtesy Sam Cobb.
AUSSIE AIDAN READ helped teammates Robby Foley and Bill Auberlen to a stunning victory in Sunday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in their Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GTD to win the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen.
The iconic race at the famous New York State venue forms part of the four-round IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup.
After strong showings – but little good fortune at the opening races at both Daytona and Sebring – the victory demonstrated the full potential of the Perth racer and his classy Turner team in this ultra-competitive classic.
And Aidan drove the lights out to help his buddies across the line at the 5.4km NASCAR-owned former F1 circuit, with its 11 tricky turns and remarkable reputation. It’s a huge win for the young man and his teammates.
Turner Motorsport is recognised as North America’s most successful privateer BMW race team.
Run in searing temperatures at Watkins Glen, Robby Foley took the start and manhandled the Beemer into sixth before Aidan took charge after 75-minutes. The WA gun went about his work – driving consistent and quick laps to claim third before handing the helm to Bill Auberlen.
Fueling issues meant the experienced American had to pit for a top-up, dropping the M6 to the back of the field – but still on the lead lap. A timely safety car to saw Bill able to move the BMW back into contention. After Robby Foley’s second stint, it was time again for Aidan to take the wheel, inheriting 11th place.
It was a huge ask, and the Turner Motorsport crew knew a spirited stint required both speed and fuel efficiency from Aidan, which the 21-year-old West Australian duly delivered. Lap after lap he moved steadily through the pack turning competitive times and often the quickest car on track, while still maintaining great fuel mileage.
He brought the car through to the front and pitted – in first place – for what would be the final time and looking strong, with all of his rivals requiring a further stop.
“Proud to be part of the success. My first trip to Victory Lane here in the States. A breakthrough result. What a day🏁🌮” – Aidan Read.
When the Safety Car was deployed – with 40-minutes to go in the 6H classic – the team’s 30-second lead was immediately eroded.
But the valuable track position was maintained, and it was Turner Motorsport’s race to win.
Bill Auberlen duly delivered, using his experience to bring the car home cleanly from the position Aidan had built for him.
“Everybody in the team did a great job today and I certainly think I made a significant contribution to the win.
“This was probably my best driving performance of the year and in difficult conditions.
“I am pleased I was able to deliver the pace and consistency required by the team to win in endurance races where strategy and speed are needed.
“I think the experience I have gained racing in the ADAC GT Masters GT3 series – where the pace is relentless, and the competition is at the highest level – along with my LMP2 Prototype endurance experience in the Asian Le Mans Series, have given me the tools and experience to deliver exactly the kind of drives needed to win in the WeatherTech Championship.
“I think I proved that today.”AIDAN READ
Do yourself a favour and read more about this remarkable young West Aussie and his racing activities. Check out his website – www.aidanread.com.au – ‘like’ his Facebook page or view content on his YouTube channel.
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