Visual Studio 'Team to Win' Award Returns for 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Season

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The Microsoft Visual Studio Team to Win Award returns to the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship this season. After a successful debut in 2014, which saw 11 different winners claiming prize money, IMSA and Microsoft are excited to offer the award once again in 2015.

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The Microsoft Visual Studio Team to Win Award returns to the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship this season. After a successful debut in 2014, which saw 11 different winners claiming prize money, IMSA and Microsoft are excited to offer the award once again in 2015.

The Team to Win Award will be given to the team best demonstrating teamwork during each 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship race. Visual Studio, Microsoft’s application development software, continues its involvement in motorsports after sponsoring the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series event at Road Atlanta in 2013 and hosting the inaugural season of the Team to Win Award in 2014.

In addition, Microsoft and IMSA have teamed up to create a new IMSA Race Day Mobile App for the 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship season.

The Team to Win theme that reflects the software’s collaborative development focus has found a great analogy in the tremendous teamwork required of world-class sports car racing.

“We were thrilled with the success of the Team to Win Award last year,” said Matt Nunn, Director, Developer Tools Product Marketing. “When it comes to collaboration, creativity, calculated risk-taking and attention to detail, racing and software development require similar mindsets. Both rely heavily on the team dynamic and the quality of the tools that they use to achieve the best results. The TUDOR United SportsCar Championship features some of the best teams and drivers from around the world, and Visual Studio is pleased to work with IMSA once again to recognize the spirit of teamwork that is essential to any winning endeavor.”

Microsoft’s involvement includes a cash prize to be awarded to the leading vote getters following each event.

The first set of nominees, chosen from the Rolex 24 At Daytona, demonstrated exceptional teamwork in one of the most prestigious motorsports events in the world.

The nominees are:

Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates

After a disappointing end to last year’s Rolex 24 At Daytona, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates was eager to right the ship this time around. The team did exactly that, clinching the overall victory in a stacked Prototype field. The No. 02 Target/Ford EcoBoost Riley, driven by Team Target drivers Scott Dixon and Kyle Larson, alongside Verizon IndyCar Series driver Tony Kanaan and NASCAR driver Jamie McMurray, qualified second for the 24-hour endurance race. The No. 02 went to the front early and took the lead on lap one of the race, maintaining the top spot for the majority of the first four hours. After a splitter change during the late afternoon hours caused the No. 02 to go one lap down, the team was able to recover the lost time and eventually regained the lead. A late full-course caution saw Dixon hold off the No. 5 Action Express Racing entry to go on to finish first — 1.333 seconds in front of second place.

PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports

Top honors in the Prototype Challenge (PC) class in the Rolex 24 At Daytona went to the No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports Cuttwood/Spyder Orafol ORECA FLM09, driven by Tom Kimber-Smith, Mike Guasch, Andrew Novich and Andrew Palmer. The team battled hard to put itself in position to win at the end. At one point, the No. 52 car was six laps down — after a broken oil line put it behind the wall, and the team was forced to make do without power steering for the entire second half of the race. But, the team kept digging and managed to work its way up to second place in the PC class by the time the final hour chimed. Given the mechanical problems that the team had endured, a second-place finish at this point would have been commendable in its own right. But, that is when a stroke of good fortune opened the door to a better result. The PC-class leading CORE autosport entry had trouble in the final hour, making contact with a Prototype entry, and the No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports entry seized the opportunity, taking the lead and never looking back. It was a relentless display of teamwork by the whole PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports outfit and a much deserved class victory.

Riley Motorsports/TI Automotive

The GT Daytona (GTD) class in the Rolex 24 At Daytona came down to a battle between Riley Motorsports and Alex Job Racing, and it was the No. 93 Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R of Riley Motorsports that came out on top. The victory at Daytona International Speedway was an emotional triumph for Riley Motorsports drivers Kuno Wittmer and Dominik Farnbacher, both of whom lost their GTLM Viper rides despite winning the title last year. Joining Wittmer and Farnbacher in Gatorade Victory Lane were co-drivers Bean Keating, Al Carter and Cameron Lawrence, all of whom completed impressive stints behind the wheel. Farnbacher handled the final stint, bringing the No. 93 TI Automotive/ViperExchange.com entry to the checkered flag well ahead of the No. 22 Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT. The victory for Riley Motorsports came despite having to start from the rear of the field after a penalty in qualifying. Thanks to a heroic team effort, the No. 93 car came from 53rd position all the way to first in class and 13th overall.

Corvette Racing

Corvette Racing scored a hard-earned GT Le Mans (GTLM) class victory in the 2015 Rolex 24 At Daytona. Antonio Garcia, Jan Magnussen and Ryan Briscoe won in their No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R in Corvette Racing’s second race back at Daytona since 2001. Garcia crossed the finish line .478 seconds ahead of the second-place GTLM car. The winning trio completed 725 laps and 2,581 miles to secure the Rolex 24 victory. GTLM pole-sitter Oliver Gavin, Tommy Milner and Simon Pagenaud placed third in class following a strong run in the No. 4 Corvette C7.R, securing two out of the three podium spots in the GTLM class for Corvette Racing.

Fans can vote through 12:00 p.m. EDT Friday, March 20, 2015 at http://bit.ly/1B8rHFK. The winner will be announced at the Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring at Sebring International Raceway.

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Tom Pokorny
Anthem Communications
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