Tyler McQuarrie, of Walnut Creek, Calif., won the GTS class race of the Toyo Tires World Challenge at Long Beach. Making his World Challenge debut, McQuarrie took the GTS pole before cruising to a 49.535-second flag-to-flag victory in his No. 19 LPL/DRS/Switcars/LCS/Dayco/M&T Lotus Exige S.
The GTS win was the first time a Lotus had won a race of any kind at Long Beach since Mario Andretti won the 1977 Formula One event in a John Player Lotus.
“I had a great start and actually got by a couple of GT cars,” McQuarrie said. “I didn’t have a working radio in the race, so I didn’t actually realize who was behind me. I looked up at the screen on the second lap and saw one of the Acuras head to the pits with the hood up. I dialed it back just a little bit when I felt I could.”
“I have to really thank the LPL and DRS team. They only got this car about five weeks ago and really did a fantastic job with it. To be able to run it here at Long Beach—to run both weekends, is really awesome. I think April in Long Beach is a little bit like May in Indy. It’s a special time and to win here is just awesome.”
The race from Long Beach will be broadcast May 1 at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) on Versus.
The World Challenge Championships return to action with a doubleheader at Mosport International Raceway, May 21-23.
[via SCCA World Challenge]