Bentley Team Dyson was in Detroit, MI, for rounds 10 & 11 of the Pirelli World Challenge. The Belle Isle event is the third street race of the season for the PWC. Dyson’s weekend started out rough when an on track incident damaged the #20 Bentley Continental GT3 beyond repair, so once again, Butch Leitzinger would have to sit out.
“I was following Butch at the time,” said Chris Dyson. “He got his inside wheels just a few inches or so too far on the curbing and the back end stepped out very quickly on acceleration. It was a very small error and he almost caught it – but not quite—and the street course here at Belle Isle is unforgiving.”
Bentley Team Dyson Racing’s other car, the No. 16 Bentley/Breitling/Mobil 1 Team Bentley Dyson Racing Bentley Continental GT3, was qualified in seventh by Chris Dyson. Saturday’s sprint race was fairly uneventful for Chris Dyson as he moved the car through the field.
As the race progressed, the McLaren of Kevin Estre stretched its lead over Olivier Beretta’s Ferrari 458 Italia GT3, and Beretta stretched his lead over JD Davison and his Nissan GTR. By lap 15, Chris Dyson closed in on the front group to battle for third. Then on lap 20, Dyson was able to pass Davison on the front straight into Turn 1 to gain third.
As the race came to its end, Dyson found himself in 3rd place. Along the way he put down the second best lap time of the event, only missing first by .002 seconds. He also earned his second Clean Pass of the season on his move to over take Davidson for third place
“As always with the World Challenge we put out a great race, it was so competitive, so hardnosed. The quality of the top eight guys in this series is unbelievable,” said Dyson. “The Bentley was very good, we got caught up in a little bit off a first lap turn 2 fracas, straightened that out, had a great battle with Davison for a while, and once I cleared him, I think Mike Skeen and Johnny O’Connell had some trouble, so we were able to advance a little bit but honestly Kevin (Estre) and Olivier (Beretta) were really doing a great job. I think it’s a testament for all the work the series has done to make all the cars balanced. ”
2nd place finisher, Olivier Beretta said, “We had a really good race, no yellows, no contact and we had a nice, clean fight. I had a really good car, and like Chris (Dyson) said the championships are very competitive, there are good drivers, good teams so you’ve got a good series. Let’s see how the race will go tomorrow.”
The #16 car would have started P2 for the weekend’s second event, but unfortunately the weather didn’t cooperate and Sunday’s race was cancelled by the Pirelli World Challenge due to rain. This was Chris Dyson’s 2nd podium of the year.
Chris Dyson is in sixth in driver points, while Bentley is fifth in manufacturer points. Chris is also the only Bentley driver to reach the podium this season.
News Source: Pirelli World Challenge, Dyson Racing
Photo credit: Dyson Racing Team
Race Results from the Pirelli World Challenge:
1. GT, (2), Kevin Estre, Lochau Austria, , McLaren 650S GT3, 33.
2. GT, (1), Olivier Beretta, Monte Carlo, , Ferrari 458 GT3 Italia, 33, -9.631.
3. GT, (7), Chris Dyson, Pleasant Valley, N.Y., Bentley Continental GT3, 33, -12.043.
4. GT, (3), Johnny O’Connell, Flowery Branch, Ga., Cadillac ATS-VR GT3, 33, -32.800.
5. GT, (8), JD Davison, St Petersburg, Fla., Nissan GT-R GT3, 33, -38.566.
6. GT, (11), Robert Thorne, Littleton, Colo., McLaren 650S GT3, 33, -39.037.
7. GT, (6), Michael Lewis(R), Laguna Beach, Calif., Porsche 911 GT3R, 33, -40.262.
8. GT, (10), (A)Henrique Cisneros, Miami, Fla., Ferrari 458 GT3 Italia, 33, -45.643.
9. GT, (4), Ryan Eversley, Atlanta, Ga., Acura TLX-GT, 33, -1:04.236.
10. GT, (20), (A)Bret Curtis, Austin, Texas, BMW E89 Z4 GT3, 33, -1:04.237.
11. GT, (22), (A)Christina Nielsen(R), Aarhus Denmark, , Aston Martin Vantage GT3, 33, -1:04.727.
12. GT, (17), Duncan Ende, Los Angeles, Calif., Ferrari 458 GT3 Italia, 33, -1:05.304.
13. GT, (19), (A)Dan Knox, Pilot Point, Texas, Dodge Viper GT3-R, 33, -1:14.251.
14. GT, (16), (A)Bryan Heitkotter, Fresno, Calif., Nissan GT-R GT3, 32, -1 lap.
15. GT, (21), (A)Timothy Pappas, Boston, Mass., Dodge Viper GT3R, 32, -1 lap.
16. GT, (14), (A)Frank Montecalvo, Highlands, N.J., Mercedes Benz AMG SLS GT3, 32, -1 lap.
17. GT, (25), (A)David Welch, Napa, Calif., Audi R8 LMS Ultra, 32, -1 lap.
18. GT, (12), (A)Martin Fuentes, Mexico City, MX, Ferrari 458 GT3 Italia, 32, -1 lap.
19. GT, (24), (A)Bill Ziegler, Ponte Vedra, Fla., BMW E89 Z4 GT3, 32, -1 lap.
20. GT, (13), Peter Cunningham, Milwaukee, Wis., Acura TLX-GT, 30, -3 lap.
21. GT, (18), (A)Eric Lux, Buffalo, N.Y., Mercedes Benz AMG SLS GT3, 18, -15 laps.
22. GT, (9), Nick Catsburg, Voorthuizen NLD, , Lamborghini GallardoGT3FL2, 12, Crash.
23. GT, (5), Mike Skeen, Charlotte, N.C., Audi R8 LMS Ultra, 8, Mech.
24. GT, (15), Andy Pilgrim, Boca Raton, Fla., Cadillac ATS-VR GT3, 4, Engine.
Time of race: 50 minutes, 48.030 seconds.
Average speed: 91.593 mph
Margin of victory: 9.631 Seconds
Lap leaders: Laps 1-1, #61 Olivier Beretta; laps 2-33, #9 Kevin Estre
Fastest race lap: #61 Olivier Beretta, 1:31.297 (92.664 mph)
Fastest qualifier: #61 Olivier Beretta, 1:36.754 (87.438 mph)