Monday, February 23, 2015

FARA: Overall top ten for ANSA Motorsports Audi R8 LMS entries at the Homestead 200

By Johan Laubscher

It was the opening round of the 2015 FARA (Formula & Automobile Racing Association) season this past weekend. The series hosted the Homestead 200 at Miami Speedway, featuring sprint races and a two-hour endurance race.

ANSA Motorsports was out in force with a fleet of customer race cars, including three Audi R8 LMS entries in the MP-1a class. The team's #4 and #33 Audi R8 LMS cars had been seen on track during 2014 and these were joined by the #22 Audi R8 LMS this weekend, the ex-JB Motorsport R8 LMS from Sweden having its debut race weekend in North America.

Eric Johnson was behind the wheel of the #4 Audi R8 LMS (ex-MTM Motorsport). John Herlihy drove the blue/black #33 Audi R8 LMS. The new addition, the #22 Audi R8 LMS, was driven by Chris Fountas and Angel Benitez.

Qualifying saw Fountas and Benitez netting sixth place overall for their debut with the R8 LMS. Eric Johnson qualified nineteenth and John Herlihy twenty-fourth.

Four sprint races were held, two each on Saturday and Sunday. The duo of Fountas and Benitez finished eleventh and fifth on Saturday and nineteenth during the second race on Sunday. Neither of ANSA's other Audi R8 LMS cars competed on Sunday, but Johnson finished twelfth during race one and Herlihy was fifteenth and sixteenth on Saturday.

The highlight of the weekend was the Homestead 200 held on Sunday afternoon. The ANSA Motorsports Audi R8 LMS squad performed well and all three of the entries finished within the overall top eleven cars.

John Herlihy led the Audi charge by finishing eighth overall, fourth in the MP-1a class. Their teammates in the #22 Audi R8 LMS, Chris Fountas and Angel Benitez, finished tenth overall, ahead of Eric Johnson in the #4 Audi R8 LMS who crossed the line in eleventh. This ensured two Audi R8 LMS entries in the overall top ten and positions four through six in class.

The next round of the FARA series will be the Spring Challenge from 18-19 April.

Photo credit: 
Angel Benitez