This Memorial Day Weekend, the Cadillac Racing and its drivers — Johnny O’Connell and Michael Cooper — are heading to Lime Rock Park in Connecticut for rounds 10 and 11 of the Pirelli World Challenge GT Championship. The duo will power through the 1.5-mile, seven-turn Lime Rock Park circuit in the Cadillac ATS-V.R.
Heading into the weekend, O’Connell is third in GT points while Cooper follows in fourth. The team is facing a restriction in boost (equal to 30 horsepower) that was assigned prior to the last round of the Pirelli Challenge at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. Restrictions aside, O’Connell is looking forward to returning to the track of his childhood memories.
“Clearly we will remain at a disadvantage,” said O’Connell. “I’m pretty sure everyone was aware just how much that affected us at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park last weekend. Like almost all race tracks Lime Rock is a combination of handling and power. You can have a great handling car, but still get motored by down the straightaway. Lime Rock is a special place for me because it’s where I saw my first car race when I was about seven years old. At the time I thought the circuit was enormous. It brings back great memories.”
Cooper is also looking forward to competing at Lime Rock Park, as it was the first track he ever drove on.
“I’m hopeful the power reduction we have been dealt won’t affect our Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe too badly, given it is such a small track,” said Cooper. “However it could make for a very long race if you have a car with more pace and horsepower chasing you. Lime Rock Park is the first race track I ever drove around in a car. It was a Skip Barber three day school in 2008. I caught the racing bug that weekend and haven’t looked back since. The coolest section of the track is the uphill turn. Unfortunately we will be using the chicane. The amount of G-force you can pull when the car drives up the hill is impressive.”