The Fitzgerald Chronicles: Watkins Glen Sahlen's Six Hours
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This past weekend was the Sahlen's Six Hours of The Glen. I drove the #38 TPC Racing Porsche GT3 Cup car, as I have at each Rolex event this season. My co-driver Manuel Matos and I did the entire race ourselves, just as we had done at the recent six hour event at Mt. Tremblant.

In the Grand Am Cup event on Saturday I drove the #83 Porsche 997 for BGB Motorsports with my co-driver Jim Bosler. That race was scheduled as a two and a half hour event.

I've traditionally had pretty good luck at Watkins Glen. I won the six hour race in 2000 and finished on the podium last year in my only other start. Unfortunately, this year would not go as smoothly.


We had three sessions in each car on Thursday during the officially sanctioned test day. The TPC Porsche was sliding around quite a bit, which I attributed to the incredibly old tires we were practicing on. It also seemed to understeer too much; a desirable characteristic at Mt. Tremblant, but not nearly as helpful at Watkins Glen.

In the BGB Porsche the idea was to get Jim as much track time as possible, as he had never been to Watkins Glen. I got in for one or two laps at the end of each session and then tried to give some feedback on the car. We made a few changes based on my limited feedback, and for the most part the car seemed to improve.

Official practice started on Friday morning. We still had a lot of understeer in the TPC Porsche and we were way off the pace. Things got worse in the afternoon session when Manuel got off course heading down into the boot (turn six) and met up with one of the ever present guard rails. It was a pretty hard hit to the left side of the car that bent the tub and broke a lot of suspension pieces. He was on some pretty old tires at the time and I can't help but wonder if that didn't contribute to the accident.

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