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Wright Motorsports Finishes Fifth for 2014
And Kuhlman Celebrates Masters Championship
In IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge

BRASELTON, Ga., Oct. 10 - Wright Motorsports placed fifth in the top class, Platinum Cup, in the team standings for the IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama series this year. The eight-event/16-race series started in March at Sebring, Fla., and concluded last Friday at Road Atlanta as part of the Petit Le Mans weekend.

One of Wright Motorsports' drivers, Kasey Kuhlman of Cincinnati, finished fifth in the top class, Platinum Cup, for the year. Kuhlman clinched that class's Masters division for drivers over 45 before the team's transporter even left its home base of Batavia, Ohio to head to Atlanta. After finishing second in the Masters battle in 2013 by the slim margin of just two points, Kuhlman won the title this year with his Kuhlsport #15 by a whopping 65 points over David Calvert-Jones.

Two other Platinum-class drivers for Wright Motorsports, Michael Schein of New York City and Santiago Creel of Mexico City, Mexico, finished eighth and tenth in the top class of the championship, respectively. 

Kristin Treager of Tulsa, Okla. missed four races but she placed sixth in the series' Gold Cup division for the year. Melanie Snow of Lehi, Utah only competed in two events but she finished 14th. Although neither competed at Road Atlanta last weekend, those ladies' efforts gave Wright Motorsports eighth place in the Gold Cup team standings for the year. 

The first 45-minute race in the Road Atlanta doubleheader occurred on Thursday afternoon, and Schein, Kuhlman and Creel started eighth, ninth and tenth, respectively in the 26-car field.  They remained in those positions and in that order until the halfway point, when Kuhlman passed Schein for eighth place working lap 16. 

Kuhlman took the checkered flag just 0.288 of a second behind the driver who got seventh overall and won the Masters class for that race, Calvert-Jones. Schein followed Kuhlman across the line in ninth place overall. 

Creel almost got a top-10 finish too, but Dan Rogers passed his #60 Porsche sponsored by Hotbook and Under Armour on the last lap to relegate him to 11th overall. 

Schein had the fastest lap of the trio with a 1:25.782 on lap eight, while Kuhlman's fastest lap was a 1:25.923 on lap 11. Creel's best lap was a 1:26.031 on lap nine.

Weather played a factor in the second half of the doubleheader, as it was raining hard when the green flag waved at 11:25 a.m. Friday. Kuhlman started seventh overall and first in the Masters class, with Schein ninth and Creel tenth. The start was a rocky one and Kuhlman got caught up in a multi-car accident on the frontstretch on the first lap that knocked him out of the race.

Schein was able to miss the melee and found himself in fifth place for the restart on lap five. Creel also moved up due to the others' misfortune, advancing to eighth.

Creel took full advantage of the situation, and passed both David Ducote and Michael Levitas working lap six to vault into sixth place, 3.673 seconds behind his teammate, Schein. 

Dan Weyland went into a gravel trap rimming the 12-turn, 2.54-mile road course shortly after the halfway point, with 11 laps and 24 minutes gone and 21 minutes remaining. That closed up the field for a restart on lap 14. Although one driver, Mark Yano, got into a tire barrier off Turn 1 on the restart, Schein and Creel were able to avoid any problems, and they took the checkered flag in fifth and sixth place, respectively, on lap 23. Schein was just 0.373 of a second behind the fourth-place driver, Jesse Lazare. Creel was just 0.541 of a second behind Schein but he was a whopping 9.304 seconds ahead of the seventh-place driver, Calvert-Jones, and it was his best finish of the year.

The pair's fastest race laps were very close. Schein ran a 1:36.305 on lap 17 while Creel recorded a 1:36.454 on lap 22. 

Wright Motorsports was also involved in the Petit Le Mans IMSA Tudor United SportsCar Championship season finale last Saturday, as it provided technical support for the Snow Racing/Dempsey Racing Porsche driven by Madison Snow, Jan Heylen and Patrick Dempsey that finished second in the GTD class. It was just 3.121 seconds behind the class-winning Audi R8 at the finish after 10 hours of torrid competition. It was the highest-finishing Porsche and the highest-qualifying Porsche in the class as well. That race was televised live on Fox Sports 2 and it aired at various times Sunday, Oct. 5 on Fox nationwide.

A one-hour show featuring coverage from the Porsche GT3 Cup races that occurred at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas Sept. 19-20 will be televised Saturday, Oct. 18 in various American markets as part of a new syndicated network television package partnership between IMSA and Sinclair Broadcast Group. That broadcast and coverage of similar races will be available on at the IMSAvids channel on YouTube and on imsa.com after they air on television.

More information is available on imsa.com and GT3CupChallengeUSA.com.

The team's Web site is at WrightMotorsports.com. It also posts updates on its Facebook page. 

Other social media links of interest include:

Wright Motorsports: Facebook: Wright Motorsports; Twitter: @WrightRac1ng

Kasey Kuhlman: Facebook: Kuhlsport

Michael Schein: Instagram: @Mike_Schein

Santiago Creel: Instagram: @Santiagocreel; Twitter: @screelg

Post-race quotes follow:

Kasey Kuhlman: "I just didn't have the speed to contend up front. But starting P9 in Race 1 set me up for a great, close race with fellow Masters competitor David Calvert-Jones.  I took several runs at him but just couldn't find the opening I needed to squeeze past.  It was a satisfying drive all the same.

"In Race 2 my friend David Calvert-Jones [CJ] went spinning in the wet at the green flag along with two cars ahead of me.  I almost picked my way through their chaos but CJ drilled me in the left rear on his second revolution, ending my day before Turn 1.  It was disappointing for sure, as I tend to run well in the rain and I was excited to race today.

"I had a great season. I met my goal of finishing in the top five overall and am the Platinum Masters champion."

Michael Schein: "I had a great season running with Wright Motorsports. It's a great group of drivers and crew. 

"The beginning of the season was tough for me but I definitely made an improvement as the season went on. 

"The first race in Atlanta was OK. I had good pace but I wasn't able to pass when I needed to. The second race in the rain was exciting. I was lucky enough to miss the big crash at the start and brought the car home in fifth."

Santiago Creel:  "Overall it was a good, ending weekend. In the first race I had a problem with the car and ended up 11th. It was raining very hard in the second race but I ended up sixth, which was my best result.

"I hope to come back next year and be in the first five spots!"

About Wright Motorsports: 

Wright Motorsports is the premier Porsche tuning facility in Ohio and a multi-series, international racing team known for superb car preparation, expert race strategy and driver development. Located in Batavia, near Cincinnati, it is owned and directed by John Wright, a certified Porsche factory-trained technician. As a crew chief Wright has played a key role in winning eight driver and seven team championships in World Challenge, IMSA (ALMS) and the Grand-Am Rolex Series. In 2012-2013 Wright Motorsports won back-to-back driver and team championships while fielding multiple entries in the IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge; serviced its customers who compete in other series and club-racing events, and provided race car-quality preparation for its customers’ high-performance street cars. For more information see WrightMotorsports.com on the Internet and follow it on Facebook and Twitter.