Ryan Otis picked up his second win in as many races in the Lionheart Challenge Series Thursday night. Week two saw the drivers tackle the Australian V8 Supercars at the Milwaukee Mile, a combination that provided a classic race.
Otis led a race-high 55 laps from the outside pole, but had to hold off a litany of Lionheart stars over numerous late-race restarts, but held on until a caution with two laps to go sealed the win.
The opening laps saw an epic battle between Otis, polesitter Dan Geren, Justin Weaver, Adam Blocker, Woody Mahan, Jason Galvin and Jake Wright. Each mixed it up until the first caution flew, and Galvin elected to stay out.
Galvin would use a good restart to separate himself from the battle behind, leading the next 31 laps until being forced to pit for fuel under green. Drivers remained clean as the same group continued to battle upfront through green flag pit stops 20 laps later, the final stops of the race.
A caution flew as stops concluded, setting up several sprint runs to the finish. Galvin, on old tires and needing those cautions to stretch his fuel and complete his one-stop strategy, continued to pester the leaders, swapping spots with Wright and Blocker, each on fresher tires, throughout the restarts.
Each time, Otis would open up a small advantage, before another mid-pack spin brought out a yellow.
On the final restart with six laps remaining, Galvin, Wright and Blocker barreled into turn one, all making contact. In a classic Supercar moment, each driver powered through the slides.
Blocker finished second as the final yellow flew, with Wright third and Weaver taking advantage of Galvin’s older tires to finish fourth. Galvin held on for fifth.
The Lionheart Challenge Series, a division meant to entertain fans across the globe during the offseason of the Lionheart Racing Series, moves to the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup for the next two events: first, at the world famous Nurburgring Nordschleife, then on the oval of Phoenix International Raceway.
The series will also drive the Nissan GTP ZX-T, Corvette C6.R GT1 and Ferrari 488 GTE at tracks like Twin Ring Motegi’s oval, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Monza and Le Mans before turning over a new racing calendar in March for season five of the Lionheart IndyCar Series presented by First Medical Equipment and season two of the Lionheart Retro Series.