Anthony Bartone (Miami, Fla.) drove the Bartone Bros Racing with RealTime Mercedes-AMG GT3 car to second place in yesterday's GT America Powered by AWS race at Sonoma Raceway. The SRO Officials later awarded Bartone the win due to the Porsche, that crossed the line first, being disqualified for a post-race technical infraction.
Taking the green from his fifth place starting position, based upon his fast lap from Saturday’s race, Bartone quickly felt the Bartone Bros Racing Mercedes-AMG GTS car under him around the 2.52 mile, 12 turn undulating Sonoma Raceway.
His first victim was St. Pete race winner Jason Daskalos. Next was a harder task with yesterday’s race victor and home track hero Memo Gidley. Showing veteran pace and patience, Bartone passed the former IndyCar driver into the chicane for third.
Not settling for P3, he then set his sights on last year’s series champion George Kurtz. Again, going into the chicane, Bartone was able to out brake the Crowdstrike co-founder and take the second position just before the race-ending yellow flag flew.
“In the first 15 minutes I was behind Jason (Daskalos) and he was doing a great job,” Bartone said. “I didn’t know if I could get him for fourth. Then it looked like his car wasn’t quite under him as good as mine was. That is a testament to the RealTime team and our engineering staff giving me a car that can go the distance. Once I made that pass, next up was Memo (Gidley). We were a little more hooked up than everybody with the changes we made overnight. I had a lot of confidence to keep moving up. Then I was able to pass George (Kurtz) in the same turn I got Memo just a few seconds before the yellow flew to end the race.
“The brakes were working great. I had a lot of confidence in the Bartone Bros Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3. I would’ve liked to have had a lap or two to see what I could’ve done with the Porsche out front for the outright win, instead of the race being settled in the tech tent.”
Teammate Andy Pilgrim (Miami, Fla.) co-drove with Bartone to two Fanatec World Challenge AM/AM Class wins.
“It was a solid weekend,” Pilgrim said. “Anthony did a superb job. He’s like a sponge. He’s been doing a tremendous amount of SIM work and he is just learning so fast. His moves in traffic, his thinking process, he was patient, and very calm on the radio. At this point in my career, I am having the best time racing with and mentoring Anthony. The RealTime guys gave us great cars the last two weeks here and had great pits stops for our World Challenge races.”
The team won both Fanatec World Challenge races, finishing first in the Am/Am category on Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, Bartone crossed the line in fifth after starting at the back of the field for taking new tires in the first GT America race of the weekend.
Next up, the team will travel to NOLA Motorsports Park in Louisiana, April 28-30.
The team would like to thank sponsors Red Line Oil, Roger Dean Chevrolet, and Talon Air.
For more information on Bartone Bros Racing, including race recaps and photos, please visit the team site at www.BartoneBrosRacing.com.