LOS ANGELES – Dreyer & Reinbold Racing rookie driver Cabot Bigham entered the final race of Red Bull Global Rallycross’ GRC Lites needing a minor miracle to win the championship down double digit points to two rivals, in a pair of Olsbergs MSE X Forces drivers Miki Weckstrom and 2015 GRC Lites champion Oliver Eriksson. He needed to hope he finished anywhere from four to five spots higher than them to overtake the points gap.
In a frenetic final that saw Weckstrom eliminated on the first lap of the race and Eriksson dropped down the order, Bigham emerged in second place – behind weekend dominant driver Alex Keyes, his DRR teammate – in the early stages of the final after starting 10th and last.
Then when Keyes fell off the road with a mechanical issue, Bigham suddenly had the lead and the title within his grasp. Eriksson recovered to fourth place, but it was not enough to retain his title, and the 20-year-old rookie out of Mill Valley, Calif. had won the GRC Lites title.
“Coming into this year, I really didn’t know what to expect!” Bigham said. “I knew I had the pavement experience, but was lacking in dirt. I was so fortunate to have such a supportive team in DRR. I also had my buddies Alex (Keyes) and Tanner (Whitten) to help me along the way. Everyone helped bring me up to speed so fast. I can’t thank them all enough!”
CORE autosport had a banner day behind Bigham, with rally rookies Scott Anderson and Colin Braun second and third to secure the Jon Bennett-owned, Morgan Brady-led CORE team its first double podium finish in GRC Lites competition.
You can see coverage of the GRC Lites finale from Los Angeles on Thursday, October 13, on NBCSN at 4:30 p.m. ET.
Helio Castroneves and Ricky Taylor delivered Team Penske’s first victory this season in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, winning at Road America from the pole position Sunday and moving up to sixth in points after finishing no better than seventh in the first three races this season.
The Team Penske No. 7 Acura DPi led a race-high 48 of 63 laps, including the final four after Castroneves seized a restart to take first from Renger van der Zande, who finished second with Ryan Briscoe in the No. 10 Cadillac DPi.
Other class winners at the Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, road course were the No. 81 ORECA LMP2 07 of Henrik Hedman and Ben Hanley in LMP2, the No. 3 Corvette C8.R of Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor in GTLM and the No. 12 Lexus RC F GT3 of Townsend Bell and Frankie Montecalvo in GTD.
RAIN-SOAKED RELIEF: Castroneves delivers Penske’s first win with late pass
Here are the race stats, points and results from the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race at Road America:
RESULTS: Click here for the overall finishing order and here for the class breakdown.
POINTS: In the DPi standings, the No. 10 Cadillac of Briscoe and van der Zande leads by six points (124-118) over the No. 5 Cadillac of Joao Barbosa and Sebastien Bourdais.
The No. 3 Corvette of Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor leads the GTLM standings with 130 points, 10 more than the No. 912 Porsche of Earl Bamber and Laurens Vanthoor.
In GTD, the No. 12 Lexus of Bell and Montecalvo moved into the lead by four points (121-117) over AIM Vasser Sullivan teammates Jack Hawksworth and Aaron Telitz in the No. 14 Lexus.
The No. 38 of Performance Tech Motorsport leads in LMP2.
Click here for the points standings for drivers and teams after Road America.
STATS PACKAGE FOR ROAD AMERICA:
Fastest laps by driver
Fastest laps by driver after race
Fastest laps by driver and class after race
Fastest lap sequence
Race analysis by lap
NEXT: The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s GT classes will race Aug. 21-22 at Virginia International Raceway.