Rebel Rock Ready for VIR Return

Rebel Rock Ready for VIR Return

19.08.2020: Rebel Rock Racing returns to Frank DePew's home track for Sunday’s Virginia Is For Racing Lovers Grand Prix, the fourth round of the 2020 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge.

Rebel Rock Racing returns to Frank DePew's home track for Sunday’s Virginia Is For Racing Lovers Grand Prix, the fourth round of the 2020 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge.



Robin Liddell and Frank DePew will share the No. 71 Urban Grid Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R, which made its debut in IMSA competition at VIR in 2018. DePew is from Richmond, an easy drive from the circuit where he first began racing 16 years ago.  “VIR is my home track, and I’ve been going there since I started racing,” DePew said.




 “I know the track and I’m very comfortable there. Hopefully, we can get a good result there. The team got a good result there in 2018 in the rain, with excellent performances from Andrew Davis and Robin, but we were well under powered.



That impressive run to the podium in the team debut outing with the Camaro set the stage for a strong 2019 season, as Depew and Liddell broke through for two impressive victories. But with the team not being able to outrun some bad racing luck so far this year, the return to VIR could set the scene for a strong second half of IMSA competition in 2020.



“Unfortunately, Rebel Rock Racing hasn’t had the start to the season that we hoped for,” DePew continued. “We had mechanical issues at both Daytona and Road America, and an unfortunate incident early in the race at Sebring. We’re hoping to turn that around at VIR, which is one of my favorite tracks, and I think we’ve got a decent shot.



We know we still lack a little straight-line speed, but the Camaro is a great car in the corners, so hopefully we will be strong in the twisty parts while being able to stave off attacks on the two long straightaways from the cars that have a little more top-end speed.”




Liddell is a two-time Rolex Series GT winner at VIR, in 2008 and 2009.



“I’m really looking forward to heading back to VIR this weekend after the disappointment of Road America last time out,” said Liddell. “This is a real drivers favorite and with lots of elevation change in a natural parkland setting you can see why. We debuted the Camaro GT4.R here in 2018 when myself and Andrew finished 3rd. Last year we unfortunately didn’t finish and so I know with it being Frank’s home track we are all looking to make amends and hoping for a podium finish to get our season back on track. The Camaro goes well here as it is good on the brakes and over the kerbs and is very stable in the fast corners. Put simply, we love racing at VIR!”



DePew drove in the VIR test back in May, which did not present many opportunities to set up the car for the race.
“It rained for a full day, and on the dry day, I hit a deer on the back straight at 137-mph,” DePew said. “Luckily, I beat him to the point and he hit the passenger side of our car, and caved in the quarter-panel and even beat up the interior sheet metal. Thank God he didn’t hit the front of the car.”



A year ago, misfortune struck Rebel Rock Racing early at VIR. Rain began falling on lap 17, with DePew – running on slick tires – going off to avoid two spinning cars in the final turn. Liddell eventually went out with power steering issues, ending a streak of four-consecutive top-five finishes.



Opening practice for the Virginia Is For Racing Lovers Grand Prix will be held on Friday at 4:15 p.m. (all times ET), with a second one-hour session set for 9:35 a.m. on Saturday. GS qualifying begins at 8:55 a.m. on Sunday. The two-hour race takes the green flag at 2:55 p.m. on Sunday.





Maddie Komar- photos IMSA

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/rebel-rock-ready-vir-return---211086.html

19.08.2020 / MaP

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