Challenging CTSCC race in New Jersey for APR Motorsport’s VW’s

Challenging CTSCC race in New Jersey for APR Motorsport’s VW’s

APR Motorsport - NJMP - 2012

Juan Alvarez and Juan Pablo Sierra Record Career- Best result of Eleventh in Crash-Filled Race

May 12, 2012 (Millville, N.J.) – In a race that saw multiple crashes, penalties, and cars on fire, the no. 131 APR VW Jetta GLI of Juan Alvarez and Juan Pablo Sierra led the way for the team in Saturday’s B+ HEROES 200 presented by BCKSTGR , the fourth round of the 2012 Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, as they took the checkered flag in eleventh place.

The day would begin with a narrow escape for Nate Norenberg. Starting 14th in the no. 161 APR VW GTI, Norenberg had nowhere to go when a multi-car incident happened in front of him on the opening lap of the race. A car behind him become airborne, landing on the driver’s side of his no. 161 APR VW GTI and causing heavy damage. Luckily, the damage was only cosmetic and after being checked out by the team under caution, Norenberg was back on his way at the tail end of the CTSCC ST field.

The no. 131 APR VW Jetta GLI took the green flag from 31st position, avoiding the mayhem at the start. Alvarez stayed out of trouble during his opening stint, turning the car over to Sierra in 17th. Sierra would find himself in the thick of a race-long battle with several other cars, sitting in 16th with fifteen minutes remaining. Sierra was able to advance several positions in the final stretch and with a late-race caution, to advance up to 11th position at the checkered.

“That was a very crazy race,” said Sierra. “Juan did a great job and the car was perfect when I got in it. It was a little bit loose at the start but it got better and I was able to be consistent and not burn up the tires too quickly. We were on the tires for a long time and at the end of the race I was battling with three Mazdas, they were able to brake much deeper than I was at the end of the long straight-aways. But I’m happy that Juan and I were able to get a good finish in a very crazy race.”

In the other Jetta, the no. 191 APR VW Jetta GLI, Daniel LaRiva and Christian Perez survived relatively unscathed to cross the line in 20th position. Perez had been as high as third in the middle stages of the race, but a late-race splash for fuel compromised their finishing position.

“The team had a great strategy that helped us get far up the field, but we needed a yellow, and the one that came at the end of the race came too late,” said Perez. “Daniel did a great job at the start and the car was in great shape. We keep getting better each race and more comfortable in the car. We’re happy with how the race went even though we had to pit at the end for fuel.”

After the heavy impact at the start, Nate Norenberg soldiered on in the no. 161 APR VW GTI, falling to 30th before pitting under full course caution to hand the car over to Josh Hurley. Quick work by the APR team enabled Hurley to rejoin the race in eighth position, running with the leaders as the race restarted. However, a mechanical gremlin surfaced – possibly as a result of damage earlier in the race – and Hurley began to lose time. He would eventually take the checkered flag in 22nd position.

“What’s so frustrating is that even though the car was really damaged and very loose, it was still very fast,” said Hurley. “After Nate got run over at the start, the car was very good. We were just outside of the top-five and still gaining time and positions when the car started to slow down. It would have been great to be able to finish where we were running with the car looking so beat up. It’s a testament to the cars that even though it was so damaged we were able to go so fast.”

In the no. 171 APR VW GTI, David Cheng leapt up several positions at the start and race through the field throughout the first 30 minutes of the race. However, while in the midst of a battle for position, his car began to suffer from an electrical problem that would force he and teammate Aleks Altberg out of the race.

“I was able to get good runs and pick up positions each time on the starts and restarts,” said Cheng, who started the car in 21st position. “I was up to ninth and battling with the cars ahead for seventh for a few laps until the car began to have some electrical gremlins. It’s too bad, because I knew we were in a good position and Aleks would have been able to keep us up there.”

The next round of the CTSCC is the EMCO Gears Classic at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio on June 8-9. The B+ HEROES 200 presented by BCKSTGR will be shown on Saturday, May 26th at 2:00 PM ET on SPEED Channel.

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