SEBRING, Florida (September 29, 2023) – CrowdStrike Racing’s George Kurtz and Colin Braun will enter the final race of Fanatec GT World Challenge America on the strength of two podium finishes and with hopes of a Pro-Am class championship lead after consecutive third-place finishes last weekend at Sebring International Raceway.
The Sebring results mean that the CrowdStrike by Riley duo head into the Indianapolis Eight Hours – part of SRO Motorsports’ Intercontinental GT Challenge – in a winner-take-all scenario. Kurtz and Braun, who are past class winners at Indianapolis and have won five times this year, need to finish ahead of the No. 120 Porsche to win the title.
At Sebring, the No. 04 Mercedes-AMG GT3 began Saturday’s 90-minute race from the Pro-Am pole position after a stellar qualifying run by Kurtz earlier in the day. He held the lead through the first 45 minutes and Braun rejoined second in class after the race’s only pitstop. He held that position until the final five minutes when he fell to third.
On Sunday, Braun started from second position. The Mercedes-AMG made its mandatory stop with 41 minutes to go with Kurtz rejoining in fourth and ending the race with a third-place finish.
Kurtz also competed in a pair of 40-minute races in the GT America Powered by AWS series and finished fourth in each – scoring valuable points to earn Mercedes-AMG its second consecutive GT America Manufacturer Championship title.
In Pirelli GT4 America competition, the No. 92 CrowdStrike BMW M4 GT4 of Kevin Boehm and Kenton Koch won for the second time this season with a thrilling finish to Saturday’s one-hour race. The pair of Random Vandals Racing drivers drove back from an early-race spin and scored an unlikely victory when Koch went from fourth to first on a restart with seven minutes to go before a full-course yellow ended the race only moments later.
The duo added a second-place finish in Sunday’s GT4 race to go along with a third-place showing in a Friday race that served as a make-up round for the rained-out round at New Orleans Motorsports Park earlier in the year. They will enter the season finale weekend fourth in the Silver class championship - Random Vandals sits third in the Team standings - with two races scheduled for Indianapolis worth 25 points each.
Boehm and Koch mathematically remain in the hunt for the Drivers championship. They are 45 points from the lead with second place only 18 points ahead.
Colin Braun, No. 04 CrowdStrike Mercedes-AMG GT3: “Not the weekend we wanted in the championship but we are still very much alive in the points, which is the most important thing heading to Indianapolis. Other than an issue on the pit stop Saturday, I feel like we maximized our opportunities for points at Sebring. We had a big pace deficit to the BMW and Porsche, and hopefully things are better when we race for the championship at Indy.”
Kevin Boehm, No. 92 CrowdStrike BMW M4 GT4: “Sometimes when your race goes backward, all you can do is move forward! And that’s what we did Saturday. I was able to recover my position before I handed it over to Kenton at the pit stop - and he took those gains and turned it into a win. I’m happy with the result and also with the momentum we have going into Indianapolis. We're focused on the top step for both remaining races, as all points will be critical to the tight fight for the championship.”
Kenton Koch, No. 92 CrowdStrike BMW M4 GT4: “The seas just parted! I don’t know what happened. I came out of Turn One in fourth and then I came out of Turn Five in first. It was crazy with how it all came together. No contact and just took advantage of some guys leaving a door open. It was unbelievable. I can’t thank the team enough and Kevin enough for rebounding after getting some contact earlier in the race. This team deserves this result so much. To be able to return to Random Vandals to the top of the podium is an added bonus.”
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