California Grown: Patrick Long talks Sonoma

California Grown: Patrick Long talks Sonoma

2019 has seen a mix of highs and lows. Talk about season thus far and what your expectations are heading into Rounds 7 and 8?

The season has been a mixed bag of results, but I am super proud of how the Wright Motorsports team has performed. Most of what has limited us has been issues outside of our own control. Heading into the Sonoma weekend, I expect Rounds 7 and 8 to be another battle royal.

I have really enjoyed returning to the SRO America championship and find that the racing is just as competitive as ever before. The new weekend format has been solid, and I think they’ve found a good place in the stability of it.

Though a native of SoCal, is there still a sense of home when you come to race in Sonoma?

Any race in California feels like home to me, even at 450 miles away. I’ve always really enjoyed coming to Sonoma for its technical nature.

What’s your favorite Sonoma Raceway memory?

Two of my memorable weekends at Sonoma Raceway coincide with our World Challenge championship seasons. During our 2012 championship run, we went two-for-two on Sonoma victories. Closing out our 2017 Overall and Sprint championships there with Wright Motorsports was also great.

From a driver’s perspective, what would you consider the most challenging and most enjoyable parts of the circuit?

As a driver, the most enjoyable part of Sonoma Raceway is the fast entry into Turns 1 and 2. The most challenging part would be the blind nature as you approach the carrousel. It’s also a very tricky circuit to overtake on, so getting in a good lap in qualifying will be key.

Any tips for a first time visitor to Sonoma Raceway? Where would you post up to watch the action?

There are a lot of high points at Sonoma Raceway, so it’s best to find a hilltop to see as much of a lap as you can. My pick would be the hill right outside of Turn 3.