Friday, February 13, 2015

Q/A: Interview with Kyle Gimple - Compass360 Racing Audi S3 driver in IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge

By Tarek Ramchani

The Audi brand is about to return to the demanding IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge (CTSCC). Canadian team Compass360 Racing will field a pair of Audi S3 cars in the Street Tuner class (ST) starting from round two at Sebring (supporting the TUSC 12-hour race). One of their leading drivers will be Kyle Gimple.

We were pleased to have an interview with Kyle Gimple following recent tests at Homestead-Miami. A very interesting Q/A about the brand new Audi S3 ST and his expectations for the 2015 IMSA Continental Tire Sportscar Challenge season.

You can follow  Kyle Gimple on his official website here on Twitter here and on Instagram here

Special thanks goes to our friends at Sunday Group Management.

What was the biggest thing you learned in the Homestead test?

One of the biggest things we learned would have to be what the car likes when it comes to setting it up.

How was the Homestead test? Any surprises/anything unexpected?

The test went really well. We made really big gains with the car and we feel there is still more we can get out of the car. There wasn't anything unexpected which was good.

The Audi has DSG, what is that like out on the track? Is it a lot easier? What do you think benefits of it will be?

The DSG transmission is pretty easy to use. The benefit with this transmission is that there won't be any turbo lag between shifts which will be nice.

What are your initial thoughts on the Audi S3?

My initial thoughts are that this is a fun car to drive. It's a comfortable car to drive, very forgiving and easy to control. The Quattro system is a big factor with this because having power being put to the ground with four tires really stabilizes the car.

What tracks on the IMSA schedule this year do you think will especially favor the Audi? Why?

It is hard to tell right now but I feel after having two test weekends under our belt that there could be a few tracks that the S3 could have some strong potential like at Laguna Seca, COTA, Road Atlanta, Watkins Glen, and Canadian Tire Motorsports Park. A big factor at these tracks will be the Quattro system. It really helps with tire degradation as opposed to just having the car as a FWD car. But these are just ideas, we won't know for sure until the race weekends come around.

Dd you feel more pressure this year, being the closing driver and helping with the development work on the new Audi?

No I don't really feel more pressure being the closing driver. I more so feel that it is an honor to be helping with the development of our Audi.

How does your approach to each race this year change, now that you're the closing and mentoring driver?

My approach this year at each race doesn't really change. My approach last year was in preparation for this year so my mindset hasn't really changed this season.

Photo credit: Compass360 Racing