K-PAX Racing Quick to the Top of Strong Spa Field
Contributes to multiple milestones
The raw emotion felt in the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa paddock was unlike anything K-PAX Racing could have imagined. Andrea Caldarelli was greeted by warm embraces by the team, as it celebrated one of its most significant accomplishments in its history. K-PAX Racing will start in pole-position for Saturday’s race, after a strong Super Pole performance that cemented the team as a legitimate contender in arguably GT3 racing’s most competitive field of the year.
“Pole at the 24 Hours of Spa…,” K-PAX Racing Program Manager Darren Law said. “This is a phenomenal achievement and has so many important milestones for us as a team and Lamborghini as a manufacturer.”
K-PAX Racing laid the groundwork during Thursday qualifying, as it advanced to the Super Pole by finishing with the third-best combined qualifying time amongst its three drivers. Jordan Pepper gave a strong introduction of the No. 6 Orange1 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO, setting the second-fastest qualifying time in his group of 2:16.905. Caldarelli and Marco Mapelli were challenged by on-track traffic in their sessions – Caldarelli finishing sixth (2:17.434) in the Pro Cup field and Mapelli 17th (2:17.373).
Caldarelli was slated by the team to compete with the field’s top-20 teams to set the grid. He was able to find enough space to hit each sector at a blistering pace, ultimately posting a pole-setting 2:16.221 on his penultimate lap. The lap-time set a new event GT3 qualifying record by about two-tenths of a second. Lamborghini Squadra Corse shares the glory of finishing on pole, as it is the manufacturer’s first during the 24 Hours of Spa. K-PAX Racing also becomes the first American team to earn pole-position in 74 editions of the event.
“As we constantly state: ‘This is the biggest GT3 race in the world,’” Law said. “We are competing against the best drivers and the best teams worldwide. For K-PAX Racing to qualify on pole in only our second attempt at this race and to be the first American based team to do that in 74 years is remarkable.”
“Then to give Lamborghini their first pole ever at the 24 Hours of Spa and break the [qualifying] track record is amazing and a testament to the level of support Lamborghini Squadra Corse has provided us through this collaboration. It has been a lot of effort and hard work for the team and drivers. As nice as it is to get pole, now the real work begins, this is a long race and unpredictable but a great way to start the event.”
The green flag of the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa is set to drop tomorrow, July 30 at 16:45. For event details and to follow the action, visit totalenergies24hours.com.
Andrea Caldarelli – No. 6 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO – “I’m super happy about the result. The team, Jordan [Pepper] and Marco [Mapelli] all did an amazing job. They were able to give me the car for the Super Pole, and as one of the last to start, it played a good role in our result. It’s going to be a long race, but it feels good to start on pole. It’s going to be quite tough with all the competitors, but we’re going to push for a great result. I’m very happy to be the first pole position in the history of Lamborghini at the 24 Hours of Spa. We’ll keep pushing.”
Marco Mapelli – No. 6 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO – “It was definitely a nice day for everybody, and it’s a great way to start a 24-hour race. We are confident and ready to go.”
Jordan Pepper – No. 6 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO – “We’re super ecstatic about qualifying. Andrea [Caldarelli] did an amazing job. It’s a long race, but to be the first Lamborghini on pole position in history is incredible. The first part of the job is done. Now, the pressure is on for tomorrow. It’s a long 24-hour race, so we have to put our heads down.”
About K-PAX Racing
Based in Sonoma, Calif., K-PAX Racing has celebrated a total 175 podiums, 71 wins, five Driver Championships, and four Team and Manufacturer Championships, solidifying the team as a continuous championship contender. In the GT Class, K-PAX Racing has fielded Porsche 911 GT3s during the 2007 – 2008 seasons, Volvo S60s during the 2009 – 2013 seasons, McLaren 12C GT3s in 2014 and McLaren 650S GT3s from 2015 – 2017. The team made a switch to Bentley for 2018, fielding the first-generation Continental GT3 in its first season and the second-generation model in 2019 and 2020. K-PAX Racing debuted the 2021 season in the Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO.
Already a leader in the production of electric motors, the company’s historic and well-established core business, since 2017 it has also been growing into aluminum die-casting with the new foundry division. In 2018 Orange1 Precision was born to develop high precision mechanics and small parts market. Thanks to this great ability for constant growth and proven solidity, together with the foresight vision of the President Armando Donazzan, Orange1 pursues the goal of becoming a 360-degree partner and supplier of motors and components, a unique interlocutor for diversified products and markets. Leading expertise, a global product portfolio, research, innovation and the ability to think in terms of an integrated system, are empowering the perception of the brand, which is today increasingly competitive. To complete the solid and dynamic reality of the Orange1 world, the company also holds commitment competition with Orange1 Basket and Orange1 Racing.
About Lamborghini Squadra Corse
Squadra Corse is the motorsport department of Automobili Lamborghini. Born in 2013 within the Research & Development department, Squadra Corse provides an integrated approach to driving experiences of the brand; from driving course programs with road vehicles to motorsport competitions, through the Lamborghini Super Trofeo or championships of the GT class.
Esperienza is the first step for those who are interested in the world of Lamborghini: Its aim is to share the thrill and emotions of the super sports cars from Sant’Agata Bolognese with fans and potential customers alike, by advanced driving course programs. Esperienza Dinamica is divided into five programs in order to face every type of surface: Corsa, Neve, Sabbia, Strada, Terra. Esperienza Accademia is the program dedicated to advanced drivers, offering driving course programs not only on the racetrack but also on ice in order to improve the driving skills of the pilots.
The Lamborghini Super Trofeo is an international motor racing series with drivers competing in identical Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo EVOs, the racing version of the production model, that features the same 5.2 l naturally aspirated V10 engine. Inaugurated in 2009, Super Trofeo hosts regional championships in Europe, Asia and North America and is divided in four categories: Pro, Pro-Am, Am and Lamborghini Cup bringing together passionate gentleman drivers and young professional pilots. At the end of each season, the teams and drivers of all regions compete against each other in the World Finals, the highlight of the season.
The most challenging tests are those which see Lamborghini’s Customer Racing Teams competing in the principal international GT championships driving the Huracán GT3. The GT3 differs from the Huracán Super Trofeo EVO through its more sophisticated aerodynamics, kinematic suspension control and other technical specifications respecting official FIA regulations. In 2017 the Huracán GT3 won the Blancpain GT Series; in 2018 and 2019 the Huracán GT3 completed a double victory at the 24 Hours of Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring in GTD Class. Lamborghini is the only company in the world to win both of the prestigious races, that are also known as 36 Hours of Florida, in two consecutive years. Another premiere in 2019: The GT3 won the Triple Crown of the Blancpain GT Series with the titles in the categories Overall, Endurance and Sprint. In 2020 Lamborghini celebrated third victory at the 24 Hours of Daytona with sensational one-two finish.
Both the Huracán Super Trofeo and the Huracán GT3 are constructed and built at the plant in Sant’Agata Bolognese on the same production line as the road vehicles. Specialized technicians of the Lamborghini Squadra Corse are present at every station along the line.
Moreover, Lamborghini Squadra Corse is trying to develop new talents in motor sports, for example through the Young Drivers Program (open for drivers under 26 that will compete in the Super Trofeo championship) and the GT3 Junior Program (for future GT drivers). Both the programs aim to offer young drivers the possibility to improve their driving skills helping them to take a career as professional pilots.
In 2018 Squadra Corse inaugurated its first One-Off, the SC18 Alston, followed by open-top SC20 in 2020. In the same year Squadra Corse unveiled Essenza SCV12 the track-only hypercar in a limited edition of 40 units, fitted with the most powerful V12 naturally aspirated engine ever developed by Lamborghini: over 830 hp.
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