GMG’s Andrew Palmer Conquers Lamborghini Super Trofeo Series World TitleNovember 25, 2013
Having graduated from go-karts to racing cars a mere eight weeks ago, 19-year old Andrew Palmer can already call himself a world champion. Following a first and second place finish during this weekend’s Lamborghini Super Trofeo Series World Final at the historic Vallelunga circuit, Palmer proved the experience of a 20-year veteran en route to what will be the first of many accolades.
“This is just incredible,” stated Palmer. “I’d only sat in one of these cars for the first time a few months ago, and to walk away with the World Title is a tremendous credit to everything that the folks at GMG and The Thermal Club have done to help me develop quickly. It’s a huge honor to take this title, and I’ve really enjoyed the whole experience. I can’t thank everyone enough for their support, but I can’t let this sink in too much…. I have to go back to school next week!”
Palmer, a former National Champion in the karting ranks, represented a strong North American contingent during the event. With the annual World Final combining drivers from the North American, European, and Asian series, Global Motorsports Group’s (GMG)Tom O’Gara, James Sofronas, as well as Palmer, arrived to challenge the best Lamborghini drivers from around the globe.
During Friday’s first round, which also acted as a qualifying round for the second, the young Chicago native knew that patience would be a critical factor in setting himself up for Saturday’s race. Getting off to a strong start, patience proved to be Andrew’s virtue as he elected to hold off a hard charge in order to insure a second place finish, guaranteeing himself a front-row start for Saturday’s finale. Despite a difficult start during the second round, race craft combined with patience put Palmer in a position to strike, eventually taking the lead and walking away to a three-second victory.
For Tom O’Gara and James Sofronas, who shared driving duties during the final, a strong run for both drivers provided a memorable experience. Having to start from the back of the grid on race one, the car was as high as ninth before settling back to fifteenth. Starting the second race from the same position, Sofronas would move the car to fourth before the first round of pit stops, with teammate Tom O’Gara taking his first ever laps in the wet. Having never driven in such conditions, O’Gara did a masterful job keeping a pace consistent with the leaders.
“I had a great experience this weekend,” stated O’Gara. “Lamborghini has provided a top program throughout the North American campaign, and to follow that up with the World Final puts a stamp on a great year. I’ve really enjoyed the series, and have to thank GMG for doing a great job preparing us for it.”
For GMG team owner James Sofronas, seeing both of his drivers elevate through the team’s development program is a great source of pride.
“As soon as we saw Andrew drive, we knew we had a star in the making,” stated Sofronas. “I’m just so proud of what he’s accomplished in a very short amount of time. He’s got the speed and raw aggression that you expect with someone so young, but what separates him is the maturity and patience he shows in the car. It’s very rare, and the mark of someone with a very bright future. Similarly, getting the opportunity to race with Tom was a real treat. Over the last several months he’s become a true friend, and I’m glad we were able to run together. Racing at a track like this for the first time is very tough, and for a guy who had never driven in the wet he showed quite a bit.”
With the 2013 Lamborghini season wrapped up, GMG’s racing program will see one more event in just three weeks’ time, to be announced shortly.