United Autosports have won the third round of the 2021 Michelin Le Mans Cup at Monza.
The #22 Ligier JS P320 of Gerry Kraut and Scott Andrews crossed the line seven seconds ahead of second place in only their third race with the team. The pair started 16th on the grid after qualifying for Gerry earlier in the day. Gerry stayed out of trouble at the start and made up places to hand the car over to Scott at the 50 minute mark. A brilliant strategy by the team and fantastic pace from Scott meant he brought the #22 up to the lead of the race and held on after the final round of pit stops to cross the line to take the win.
The #23 crew of John Schauerman and Wayne Boyd also performed brilliantly, crossing the line fourth after a starting position of 24th – a position that didn’t reflect John’s true pace throughout the weekend. John also stayed out of trouble on the start and during two safety car periods and passed a number of cars ahead of him before handing over to Wayne in fourth. During his stint, Wayne was running ahead of Scott during their first few laps, until a back marker, who was two laps down, pushed Wayne off the track dropping him to third. Wayne and Scott ran second and third until Wayne pitted for the final mandatory pit stop. A lap later Scott also pitted and took the lead of the race on his return to the track. Wayne was down in fifth place but managed to pass the car in front of him to take fourth at the chequered flag.
Unfortunately, the #32 Ligier of Daniel Schneider and Andy Meyrick could not take part due to an illness for Daniel. After being taken ill overnight, he was diagnosed with kidney stones, ruling him out of race. The team wish him a speedy recovery and the pair will be back at Le Mans.
The #22 Ligier now leads the championship once again, with the #23 only five points off the lead in third. The next rounds of the Michelin Le Mans Cup are held at Le Mans – the Road to Le Mans event – on 18-21 August.
“What a result. Awesome job by the team and my engineer Xavi. Scott did brilliantly too and I’m so happy to bring home this win with United Autosports.”
“It was a near flawless race. Gerry had a great opening stint and handed the car over to me in a really solid position. From there my engineer, Xavi and United Autosports made some perfect strategy calls, with our car very consistent throughout the entire run. I’m so happy for everyone involved and to reward the team after a tough week.”
“I turned the car over to Wayne in fourth. Mostly I got lucky. Everyone else seemed to have incidents and imploded around me. I passed some cars out there though and I was consistent, my lap times were good and I didn’t make any mistakes at all. I was really happy with the drive – it was super fun. Wayne did a mega job as always. I can always count on him to do the best job possible. I’m really happy.”
“From our starting position of 24th and to finish fourth was massive. I would definitely have taken that at the start of the race. It’s a little bit disappointing though. John’s pace was really good and we should have qualified better but he got unlucky during qualifying, which would have put him in a better position in the race. The car was really good, our pace was strong and great strategy from the team to get us so far up the grid. I’m a little bit annoyed as I was shoved into the gravel and lost a bit of time with some damage. I lost a couple of places, which if that hadn’t happened, we could probably have had the win, or at least a podium. But from 24th to fourth with some really good championship points, I’m really happy.”
“Wow what an amazing result for our Michelin Le Mans Cup team. The whole crew did an amazing job in tough circumstances so well done to them all.”
“The team did a great job with the strategy, which has become quite critical in the MLMC this season. Gerry, John, Scott and Wayne have all been on the pace. John got unlucky with two red flags in qualifying and then Wayne got caught out when they pitted under a green flag and then an FCY was called which meant everyone else could pit and not lose too much time. But either way, I’m so pleased to Gerry and Scott – their first win with us in only three races. And for John and Wayne to make up so many places, that was brilliant. A real lift for the team after a tough few days. We would all like to wish Daniel well too and can’t wait to have him and Andy back with us at Le Mans.”