WORLD WRAP: Parente scores bizarre win
Pirelli World Challenge
Alvaro Parente has taken his second win of the season at Long Beach in a race which was stopped due to a fire hydrant flooding the track early in proceedings.
The 50-minute affair was suspended for 15 minutes when a hydrant on a nearby street poured water onto the circuit between Turns 8 and 9 after a road car hit it.
The pole-sitting Parente had kept Patrick Long out into Turn 1, and led when the race was red flagged.
The K-RAX Racing McLaren driver had to survive that restart and another caution period with just over 10 minutes to go, but was able to gap Long and manage his lead each time, winning comfortably in the end.
“We really wanted to get this win,” said the Portuguese, who reset the race lap record on his way to victory.
“I had a great car in my hands, my team and McLaren GT did a great job, and I’m happy to be back on the top step today.
“That (flooded track) was a little crazy with the water on the track. I went into that turn and all of a sudden there was a river in front of me so I just went foot off throttle and prayed that I wouldn’t crash or anything and just skidded through the puddle.
“It was last minute for me; you’re flat out on that straight and suddenly you see a black shadow there, the water from the fire hydrant.”
Long took second in the Wright Motorsports Porsche, while Bryan Sellers put another K-RAX McLaren on the podium.
Round 3 is at Virginia International Raceway from April 28-30.
WeatherTech Sportscar Championship
The Taylor brothers have notched up a hat-trick of wins to start the WeatherTech Sportscar season.
Jordan Taylor finished the Long Beach race in the #10 Konica Minolta Cadillac prototype, taking the lead with five minutes left when traffic helped him to round up Ryan Dalziel at Turn 1.
Tayor managed to grow the margin to more than six seconds at the finish, giving he and brother Ricky another victory to add to those at the Daytona 24 Hour and 12 Hours of Sebring.
Dalziel had led for much of the second half of the 100-minute race after the #2 Tequila Patron Nissan, driven also by Scott Sharp, had used pit strategy to elevate themselves from sixth on the starting grid.
Jonathan Bomarito/Tristan Nunez in the #55 Mazda took third.
Ryan Briscoe and Richard Westbrook took the #67 Chip Ganassi Ford to second in the GTLM class and seventh outright, behind Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner in the #4 Corvette.
Round 4 will be held at Texas’ Circuit of the Americas from May 4-6.
World Touring Car Championship
Tiago Monteiro leads the championship after he headed a Honda one-two in the feature race in Round 1 at in Morocco.
Monteiro started on pole and led all the way, while his team-mate Norbert Michelisz passed Nestor Girolami on Lap 1 and would go on to take second.
Girolami rounded out the podium in his Volvo.
Esteban Guerrieri won the opening race, which went under Safety Car shortly after the start when Yann Ehrlracher’s Lada hit the stalled Citroen of John Filippi.
Ryo Michigami was another early victim when he spun his Honda and made contact with Tom Chilton’s Citroen.
Pole-sitter Tom Coronel led when the race restarted but lost six positions when he ran wide due to brake problems with his Chevrolet.
That handed the lead to eventual winner Guerrieri in his own Chevrolet.
Round 2 is at Monza from April 28-30.