BOWMANVILLE, Ontario – The start of Race One at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park braced for another battle between Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda points leader Sean Rayhall and Ryan Booth, who is currently third in the overall standings.
Mikhail Goikhberg, who entered the weekend comfortably in second, suffered heavy damage to his car in an incident in qualifications. While he rallied to hop into a replacement car for the first race, he was unable to complete the first lap.
Rayhall and Comprent Motor Sports were the Cooper Tires Pole Award winners today at the Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix, but Booth quickly claimed the lead on the first time around the 10-turn, 2.459-mile road course. The two remained close and were side-by-side on the back stretch entering the final turn on lap three. After Booth was able to lead the field for 10 laps, Rayhall made a move around the outside, which ultimately resulted in Booth spinning to the inside.
Rayhall regained the lead at that point and held onto his No. 14 Lites L1 Élan DP02 2.0L Mazda entry to the finish line. But if that were not enough, on lap nine of 22, Rayhall turned the fastest lap of the race with a time of 1:14.994, for a new race lap record for Prototype Lites at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
“Another pole, and another win for the Robert Talbot Motorsports number 14 Mazda machine,” Rayhall said. “I can’t say enough how proud I am of these guys. They’ve worked really really hard this week. We had great communication by racing radio the whole time. I also really need to thank 8Star Motorsports for also helping me out to get me out to the track this weekend. They’ve kind of come on board and I’m working for them as well. To come away with a pole and win at a new track is really awesome. I just can’t be more grateful for everyone behind me.”