Murillo Racing scored the top two spots in Saturday’s IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge race at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP). They were dominant throughout the race as the No. 56 and No. 72 cars combined to lead all but two laps.
Co-drivers Eric Foss and Marc Miller claimed the victory in the No. 56 Murillo Racing Mercedes-AMG GT4, .338 of a second ahead of their teammates, Kenny Murillo and Christian Szymczak, who finished second in the No. 72 Mercedes. It was the team’s second victory in the last three races.
Foss, who led the final 33 laps, said, “The Murillo Racing team has always been on top of things and a great communicating team,” Foss said. “Having Kenny Murillo and Christian Szymczak come into the team this year has given us another push and added an incredible amount of additional data with two more talented drivers on the team.
“Christian was very generous today. I made a couple of mistakes toward the end of the race, and he had the opportunity to pounce, but we definitely wanted to make sure we stayed clean. It’s just amazing to bring both Mercedes-AMG GT4s home one-two like that and get the great result here. The biggest strength the Mercedes-AMG GT4 has is its balance. It is very driver-friendly.”
Szymczak was pleased with the team’s performance and optimistic about the future.
“It is awesome for the team,” he said. “Since we rolled the cars off the truck, they have been great, and we knew we were going to be in for a good finish for the weekend. I came out of the pits and Eric had already cycled through the pits. He was on warm tires, I was on cold, and he was just able to get by me for the lead. I would have tried to make a move if I could have, but there was just no viable place to make a move. It was just great to bring home the one-two finish. We just need to keep showing up, doing what we do, and hopefully, good results will keep coming our way.”
Marc Miller was eager to help out the team and fill in for the injured Jeff Mosing.
“I have known the Murillo guys and Jeff Mosing for years and when Eric called me, and I could do it, I didn’t hesitate. I called my wife and said ‘hey, we are going to Canada.’ It was our weekend off, but I really wanted to fill in for Jeff and do this for Eric.”
Murillo, who won his first career pole Friday and led a race-high 42 laps, said, “Christian and I both worked hard coming into this event. Anything less than a podium was not going to feel good. If we were going to get beat, it was going to be by our teammates. I am really happy for the team. They have been working really hard all weekend long. Canada always brings some logistical challenges, so we were working with just half the crew, it was especially hard on the crew, so to bring them a one-two finish just feels really good.”
Wickens and Wilkins score TCR class victory
To say it’s been an exciting week for Robert Wickens is an understatement.
Last week, he was in victory lane at Watkins Glen International, celebrating his first win since he returned to competition this year after suffering a spinal cord injury in 2018 during an IndyCar race.
Then, fast forward to Saturday when Wickens and Mark Wilkins earned the Michelin Pilot Challenge Touring Class victory. But it’s what came in between that put the biggest smile on his face.
Wickens was at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on Thursday when his wife call called to say the baby they were expecting was going to arrive early. Wickens immediately drove home for the anticipated birth of his first child, On Friday, he and his wife welcomed their son, Wesley Joseph Wickens, into the world.
Who says, you can’t have it all.