Ende starts and finishes fourth in a wild Pirelli World Challenge race
April 22, 2013 (Los Angeles, Calif.) â€“ The results will show that Duncan Ende, in the no. 24 STANDD / Merchant Services Audi R8 LMS, started and finished in fourth place in Sundayâ€™s Pirelli World Challenge Long Beach Grand Prix presented by KIA. What they wonâ€™t show is how Ende twice fell through the order to battle back to where he started.
His charge through the field not only netted him the fastest lap of the race, but a new GT-class track record at 1:22.020 (86.368 mph).
As the lights went out to start the fifty-minute race, Endeâ€™s Audi suffered a brake malfunction, causing him to plummet through the field and fall amongst the GTS-class cars. With the problem resolving itself, Ende was able to mount a charge through the field, setting fast lap as he raced up to seventh position. Pushing hard to make up time, Ende then lost time going off in turn one of the famous street circuit, surrendering several of the positions he had just made up.
Ende was able to make up a few more positions and benefited from some of the carnage in the GT class to move up to fourth when the race ended under full course caution.
â€œWell that was interesting,â€ said Ende. â€œI was really hoping that the race would have restarted because the Audi R8 LMS was so good today. I was pushing it really hard â€“ maybe a little too hard into turn one â€“ but luckily we were still able to get a good finish and good points because the GMG Racing crew prepared a really fast car â€“ while the race was frustrating on some levels, getting the fast lap and the track record is something to be proud of.â€
Ende narrowly missed his second podium of the weekend, as he and teammate Bruno Junquiera scored a third place finish in Saturdayâ€™s American Le Mans Series race in the Prototype Challenge class.
â€œThe double podium this weekend would have been nice, but after our DNF in the first World Challenge race at St. Petersburg itâ€™s good to score points for the second race in the row,â€ said Ende. â€œFourth is my least favorite position because itâ€™s so close to the podium! It was a hard way to finish where I started but it was fun race, and itâ€™s always a great experience to race in Long Beach which is so close to home.â€
After three rounds of the 2013 Pirelli World Challenge season, Ende sits seventh in the GT class at 207 points.
The Pirelli World Challenge Long Beach Grand Prix presented by KIA will air on Sunday, May 5 at 2:00 PM ET on NBC Sports, and can be seen on-demand at world-challengetv.com.
The next Pirelli World Challenge race will be at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas on May 17-19.
To learn more:
Merchant Services, Ltd., visit www.merchantservicesltd.com
STANDD, visit www.standd.org, and follow them on twitter at @STANDD_626
Racerâ€™s Roast, visit www.racersroast.com
GMG Racing, visit www.gmgracing.com
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