Race Weekend Central

Bijoy Garg Wins VP Racing SportsCar Challenge Race No. 1 At Sebring

Jr III Racing’s Bijoy Garg led flag-to-flag Sunday morning (March 12) from the pole to win Race No. 1 for the IMSA VP Racing SportsCar Challenge at Sebring International Raceway. It is Garg’s first sports car victory after he split time between the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship and Indy Pro 2000 presented by Cooper Tires last year.

Garg started from the pole and quickly got out to a four-second lead over Dan Goldburg, who swept the opening weekend at Daytona. Further back, MLT Motorsports’ Adrian Kunzle and Forty7 Motorsports’ Jon Brownson collided on the first lap and went off, but were able to continue.

Garg’s lead ultimately peaked at nearly six seconds over Goldburg. Around the halfway point of the race, Goldburg began to reel him back in. The rest of the LMP3 field were more than 20 seconds back, allowing Garg and Goldburg to settle things amongst themselves.

Brian Thienes was in his customary third spot (where he finished both races in Daytona back in January) until he went off-course with 20 minutes to go in turn 15. He would recover, but ultimately dropped to fifth.

With 13 minutes to go, the race’s sole full-course caution flew due to debris on the Ulmann Straight. Everyone was able to close back up.

The green came back out with just over four minutes remaining. Garg was able to extend his lead back out to two seconds and held on for the win.

Garg’s margin of victory was 3.479 seconds over Goldburg. Muehlner Motorsports America’s Antonio Serravalle was third, followed by Sean Creech Motorsport’s Dr. Lance Willsey. Thienes ended up fifth.

In GSX, Stephen Cameron Racing’s Greg Liefooghe started from pole in his BMW with KohR Motorsports’ Luca Mars alongside. Kelly-Moss Road & Race’s Sebastian Carazo moved up from the fourth starting spot to put his Porsche in second and briefly pressured Liefooghe for the lead. However, the veteran Liefooghe slowly began to pull away.

Mars was able to run Carazo back down and take second back 13 minutes into the race. From there, Mars began to run Liefooghe back down. It took only a few laps for Mars to catch Liefooghe while both drivers were driving away from Carazo.

The caution gave Mars a chance to regroup for one last charge on Liefooghe. The final two laps saw Liefooghe and Mars stage a fierce battle for the lead. On the final lap, Mars was finally able to get past. From there, he held on for the win.

Mars ended up .292 seconds ahead of Liefooghe at the finish. Carazo was third, followed by Accelerating Performance’s Moisey Uretsky. Turner Motorsport’s Francis Selldorff was fifth in his previous generation BMW.


Race No. 2 for IMSA VP Racing SportsCar Challenge is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. ET Sunday afternoon.

About the author

Phil Allaway has three primary roles at Frontstretch. He's the manager of the site's FREE e-mail newsletter that publishes Monday-Friday and occasionally on weekends. He keeps TV broadcasters honest with weekly editions of Couch Potato Tuesday and serves as the site's Sports Car racing editor.

Outside of Frontstretch, Phil is the press officer for Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, N.Y. He covers all the action on the high-banked dirt track from regular DIRTcar Modified racing to occasional visits from touring series such as the Super DIRTcar Series.

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