Defending Grand Sport Winner Bodymotion Racing Will Try to Repeat Victory Saturday at MRLS

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Bodymotion Racing, the defending winner of the Grand Sport (GS) class at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and the team which won the only other four-hour race on the 2017 IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge schedule, will go for another victory Saturday during the series' only visit to California this season.

Trent Hindman of Wayside, N.J. and Cameron Cassels of Coldstream, British Columbia, Canada enter the next-to-last race of the year third in the GS point standings. They co-drive the Ocean Township, N.J.-based team's GS entry, the No. 12 Porsche Cayman GT4 sponsored by Bodymotion, Delaware Investments and Trim Tex.

Both of the drivers of Bodymotion's Street Tuner (ST) entry, the No. 31 Porsche Cayman sponsored by Bodymotion, Veristor, the Apex Sports Car Academy and Delaware Investments, have California ties. Devin Jones of Mooresville, N.C., is originally from California, while Drake Kemper lives in Thermal.

Practice will be held at 11:45 a.m., 4:45 p.m. and 8 p.m. EDT on Friday, with qualifying following at 8:30 p.m. for the 17 ST cars and 8:45 p.m. for the 15 GS cars. Fans can walk the grid at 3:50 p.m. EDT Saturday before the race begins at 5 p.m. EDT, 2 p.m. local.

Live video streaming and live timing and scoring will be available on imsa.com and imsa.tv. The television broadcast will be on FOX Sports 1 on Sunday, Oct. 1 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. EDT.

Pre-race quotes follow:

Last year this race was two-and-a-half hours long, but this year it's a four-hour event. Trent and Cameron won the only other four-hour race on the schedule this year, which was the season opener at Daytona. How will you approach Laguna? Will the two Bodymotion cars have different strategies?

Trent Hindman: "I believe our strategy will be significantly different than the one we had at Daytona. Bringing home the win at the first four-hour CTSCC race of the season was really the highlight of our year so far, but we did have some areas to improve upon. I know Cameron and I and the whole Bodymotion team are looking forward to this weekend's four-hour event at Mazda Raceway, as we historically have had a strong car there and will learn from our previous endurance racing experience at Daytona. Having a clean, consistent race with minimal mistakes will be key."

Cameron Cassels: "Fuel mileage differences between the ST and GS car will likely require two different strategies.  We just cannot go nearly as long on fuel as the ST car is able to. As far as strategies go, I am sure Marc Manning is still busy working on that."

Devin Jones: "The four-hour race at Daytona saw a lot of different strategies, so I expect to see something similar at Laguna. Fuel and tires will play a role in when we pit, along with when the caution flags fall. This track has a history of not suiting our car's strengths, so we are going to aim for some inventive calls during the race to see if we can get an advantage over the cars that are lighter and easier on tires. Our team always has a creative plan for both the No. 12 and No. 31 Bodymotion Caymans. I am confident we will have an advantage on pit road."

Drake Kemper: "It's fairly obvious how well the Mazda MX-5 will do at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca; they normally have no problem securing the podium at this track. However, anything can happen during a four-hour race. Ultimately strategy and consistent pace will determine who wins, and Bodymotion has done a great job at both of those things this year."

Although the last couple of years' races at Laguna were shorter than this year's race will be, there were only two caution flags last year for seven laps, and only four cautions in 2015 for 12 laps. How will that affect your strategy?

Trent Hindman: "Full-course cautions are so difficult to predict, so it's impossible to plan on them happening or not happening in the initial strategy call. I would be surprised if we don't have a full-course caution to be honest, but we'll cross that bridge when we get to it. Staying relaxed and maintaining the ability to adapt to the different scenarios that can/will be thrown our way will obviously be very important to having a successful race."

Cameron Cassels: "It is really hard to say how it will affect us. It really depends on the strategy we commit to on race day.  However, with a four-hour race, I am sure all the teams will react to a few surprises."

Devin Jones: "It's hard to predict cautions, but looking at trends over the past few seasons, we don't see many of them at any track. In any drivers' meeting the race directors really stress where the safe zones are and the importance of parking a disabled car in a location where the racing can continue, which is great. Cautions can really mess with strategies if they fall at certain times. So it's important we have some wiggle room when calling a race and are ready to change our plans if needed. It's semi-controlled madness for the most part!"

Drake Kemper: "For the 31 car, the more green-flag laps the better. We have had our races ruined by cautions on more than a few occasions already."

This track is famous for its Corkscrew turn. What does it mean to you to be able to race on this very same circuit? Do you have a pass that you were ever involved in anywhere that was most memorable to you?

Trent Hindman: "We are very fortunate to be running in a championship that happens to visit most, if not all, of the most legendary circuits in North America, and arguably some of the very best in the world. Driving on hallowed ground such as Laguna Seca, Watkins Glen, Road America, etc. all require tremendous respect from the drivers in order to get around them quickly."

Cameron Cassels: "Growing up in Northern Canada and playing video games that had the famous Laguna Seca track in it was as close as I ever thought that I would get to actually racing on the track. Fast forward a whole bunch of years later and I am fortunate to have the opportunity to compete there."

Devin Jones: "The Corkscrew is a one-of-a-kind corner; it's so wild. The sensation of turning down, what it seems like is off a cliff, and then feeling the car compress down the hill is something every driver I know finds just plain awesome. The few legendary passes in that corner have created a bit of a misconception that it's a great passing zone. Let's say it's not my first option, but as drivers we are always looking for an opportunity, so passing there is always possible, just maybe not like Zanardi's epic move. I've found myself three wide going into the Corkscrew before, and I can't tell you how but we all made it out with no contact."

Drake Kemper: "Mazda Raceway always creates absolutely insane side-by-side racing. Some of the best battles of all time happened at this legendary track. Bergmeister/ Magnussen in the epic GT2 battle to the flag is my favorite racing clip ever.

"I actually scored a podium at MRLS last year coming out of T11 onto the front straight pulling an over-under on my team owner to barely beat him to the flag.

"One thing is for sure - there are no boring corners at MRLS. I just want to race clean and have fun."

Trent and Cameron, you enter this race third in points, but you're the defending race winners and with a little bit of luck you'll get back on top of the point standings again. What are your thoughts on your overall chances both for this race and for the title?

Trent Hindman: "The championship is always in the back of our minds, and that's where it needs to stay. We have been way too focused on that alone over the past few events and that has shown in some of the more unfortunate things that have happened to us. This four-hour race is a great opportunity for us to get back on our feet and get back to the top step of the podium, and that's all we care about at this point."

Cameron Cassels: "Our focus is on wins, although a title is still possible. MRLS suits the Porsche well, so we are optimistic for a great finish."

What would winning the championship mean to you?

Trent Hindman: "It would be pretty cool to be among the names that have won two GS championships, as well as adding Cameron's name and Bodymotion Racing to the list of CTSCC champions. Winning a title in anything is unbelievably difficult, and I think there is not a team in the paddock who deserves it more than these guys after all of the bad luck we have continued to battle through."

Cameron Cassels: "It is hard to put that into words! To win the championship with a team of folks that have become great friends would be the icing on the cake."

Will you come early or stay late to do another activity in the area? If so, what?

Trent Hindman: "I won't this time, unfortunately. If I did, I'd be coming early and staying late to surf Steamer Lane in Santa Cruz, which isn't too far away from Monterey. We East Coast people don't ever see swells that nice."

Cameron Cassels: "Unfortunately it will be a relatively quick visit. With the kids back in school I need to get home and help with the taxi driving!"

Devin Jones: "We have some family in Northern California, where I am originally from, so we all love going up there for a race at Laguna. It's always nice to have some good Mexican food!"

Drake Kemper: "I'll be driving up the evening before testing; nothing too special. But it sure is a pretty place."

Paul Newman had his shop in the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca Skip Barber Racing School building before they ran the racing school here. And of course the American film industry is headquartered in California at Hollywood. What is your favorite Paul Newman movie, and why?

Trent Hindman: "I can't say I've ever watched a Paul Newman film. I'm sure Mike Bavaro has a few good stories though; that guy has rubbed elbows with everybody."

Cameron Cassels: "That's easy; "Slapshot!""

Devin Jones: ""Cool Hand Luke"is a classic; I love that movie and Paul Newman's character, how he defied the authorities. Ha ha!"

Drake Kemper: "I love "The Sting;" it's a classic.  But I'm going to have to say "Cars!" It's everybody's favorite Pixar movie."

Drake, since this is the series' only race in California this year and you live in California, do you have anything special planned? Will you have friends and family in attendance?

Drake Kemper: "I will have my grandma joining my family at the race, which is truly great! I believe this will be her first pro race she's attended."

Have you done any stunt driving at Laguna, and if so, for what commercial, TV show or movie?

Drake Kemper: "I used to work for the Skip Barber Racing School that was based at MRLS. We had quite a lot of fun doing customized car-control programs for a large number of the Silicon Valley tech companies. While it's probably better none of it is on camera, I can safely say that some of the biggest names in social media can definitely drift if needed."

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