Kasemets Closes Atlantic Season with Victory
Wampum, PA – Tonis Kasemets ended the 2015 Atlantic Championship Series season driving through the field to a win a shortened race with snow coming down in round 14 at Pittsburgh International Race Complex.
Driving the No. 47 Swift 016/Mazda from K-Hill Motorsports, Kasemets took the lead on lap three and never looked back, winning over Conner Kearby and Saturday winner Garth Rickards in tricky conditions. Both Kearby and Rickards were also in K-Hill Swift 016/Mazdas.
With cold weather, the field got two pace laps before the green flag fell on pole-sitting Conner Burke in the No. 19 Company Motorsports Swift 014/Toyota. The qualifying order had been set by fastest race laps on Saturday.
Conner Kearby pounced on Burke at the start, taking the outside line from the front row in turn one and grabbing the lead immediately in the No. 56 for K-Hill Motorsports.
A bit further behind, Kasemets was carving through Atlantic cars, and moved to second place by lap three and into the lead shortly thereafter.
After a pace-setting Friday in practice at Pittsburgh, Kasemets stormed through the field on Saturday too before gearbox problems ended his day.
Elsewhere, Gaston Kearby got the better of Burke on lap five to move into fourth place on lap five, where he ultimately finished, winning the Atlantic Challenge division.
By lap six, Lewis Cooper had his Polestar Racing Group entry up to fifth place, getting around both John and Conner Burke as conditions started to worsen around the 18-turn road course. Cooper ultimately retired to the paddock.
Rain started on lap eight, and sleet and snow started minutes later, with the officials opting to end the race at the half-distance mark, making the final event of the Atlantic season an official race.
Behind G. Kearby in fourth, John Burke completed the top five in a Company Motorsports Swift 014/Toyota.
Comprent teammates Bob Corliss and Richard Zober were sixth and seventh, respectively.
Keith Grant and Matt Miller did not start the race.
Keith Grant, in the No. 40 Polestar Racing Group Swift 016/Mazda, won the 2015 Atlantic Championship Series title on Saturday with a third place finish in round 13 of the season. Grant’s strong season included wins at Road Atlanta, VIR, Mid-Ohio and Pittsburgh.
Full results are available on www.AtlanticChampionshipSeries.com under the Results tab.
The 2016 14-race Atlantic Championship Series schedule will be announced soon by Formula Race Promotions, along with programs for the F2000 and F1600 Series.