TeamTGM Takes Top-Five at Watkins Glen

Sunday, July 2, 2017

There may have been a mix of weather conditions at Watkins Glen International on Saturday with periods of rain, but the sun shined brightly on TeamTGM when the Atlanta-based organization took a top-five result with drivers Ted Giovanis and Guy Cosmo in the Continental Tire 120 at the Glen.
 
It was the best finish for the team since Giovanis and Cosmo took a podium finish of third at Road America last year in Cosmo’s first event with the group.
 
The 2-hour race held at the 3.4-mile upstate New York road course was a challenging one. It opened under sunny and dry conditions before the rains came and the race was red flagged for lightning in the area. But almost as soon as the rains came, the rains stopped and the final segment of the race saw bright and sunny conditions yet again.
 
Giovanis opened the event and clicked off some very good lap times as he continued to show remarkable progress. The rain began to fall some 30 minutes into the race and as the conditions grew worse, the team called Giovanis to pit lane for a switch over to the Continental Tire rain tires. Not long after, lightning was spotted in the area and the race was halted during a red flag while the race clock continued to run.
 
When the red flag was lifted and the full course caution was displayed, Giovanis pitted to hand the car over to Cosmo with 45 minutes remaining.
 
“The opening stint was great – I just focused on my line and improving my lap each time around,” said Giovanis. “When it first started raining, it wasn’t that bad, and I was hoping that it wouldn’t rain that hard. Unfortunately, that wasn’t meant to be as the rain fell harder and we had to come in for new tires. The guys just worked out a great strategy. In racing it’s not always about what we do, it is also about what your competitors do – it’s all circumstantial. You work your strategy - you keep changing it and playing it until the end and today it really worked out for us.”
 
Quick action atop the TeamTGM pit box saw Giovanis bring the No. 46 to pit lane under that full course caution and he turned the car over to Cosmo, who took on fresh slick Continental Tires as a dry line had begun to form around the circuit. That call turned out to be a key moment of the race when Cosmo returned to the track on the lead lap as the field went back to green – though 20 seconds adrift of the pack.
 
Cosmo not only made up tons of time but he also made up several positions during his first green flag run until a subsequent yellow was displayed with less than 20 minutes remaining in the race. That allowed Cosmo to catch back up to the lead pack and was ready for battle when the field went back to green with 10 minutes left in the race.
 
Restarting seventh, Cosmo maneuvered his way forward in the final laps, and brought the No. 46 home fifth at the checkered flag.
 
“This is amazing, finally!” enthused Cosmo following the race. “That was a lot of fun. Ted (Giovanis) had a great stint - he was doing really well and we were able to keep him on the lead lap which was phenomenal and the pits stops all went well. It was such a tense moment trying to decide what tires to go with there at the end for my stint. But when there’s a question, you have to go with drys! IMSA held the yellow long enough that it was definitely the right call - for everybody - which took away my ambitious advantage. It was great to finally race and really be in the mix. We started the green stint about 15-20 seconds behind the entire field and I caught up, passed one guy and then we got that yellow and it helped out a bunch. This series is so intensely competitive and all the different cars have strengths in different areas. Around here, for today, there were some cars that got by me and there was just no way I was going to be able to get them back. But as far as overall pace, we were right there with everybody so I’m really proud of the team. A top-five is pretty awesome and all of this goes to TeamTGM because they have worked so hard all year long.”
 
Giovanis, who also serves as the team owner, could not have been more proud of his team’s effort over the weekend.

TeamTGM returns right back to IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge competition next weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park for Round 5 of the championship. 

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