Unitronic JDC-Miller Audi Battles Through Issues for Podium Finish in Ohio

[source: Unitronic]

As the summer temperatures heat up, so too does the IMSA racing schedule and kicking off the busy summer season was the Unitronic JDC-Miller Motorsports team’s second 4-hour race of the season at the Mid-Ohio Sportscar Course for the O’Reilly Auto Parts Four Hours of Mid-Ohio.

Coming into the race on a three race winning streak, the team knew it would be tough to keep the chasing pack behind as every competitor gunned to take down the #17 that had been on top for most of the start of the season. The Lexington, Ohio based track is also one of the toughest on the calendar for the Audi RS3 LMS TCR platform as it suited the hatchback car configuration of the Honda Civic FL5 TCR and Alfa Romeo Giulietta Veloce TCR more than the sedan platform of the road car based Audi platform.


Starting off the weekend strong, drivers Chris Miller and Mikey Taylor topped the charts in practice 1 and a solid 5th place in practice 2 in the tight TCR field. Qualifying brought more of a challenge, as the Honda Civic FL5 TCR team of MMG stretched their legs and showed what their well-favored balance of performance could do with a chart topping time of 1.27.103, leading to driver Chris Miller in 4th place with a 1.27.804.


As the green flag flew the battle started for the #17 team as the rowdy TCR class battled back and forth making contact with the Audi several times and forcing Chris Miller as low as 8th at one point. Nevertheless, the team charged on throughout numerous issues with the handling and gearbox shifting of the now damaged race car. Around the halfway mark of the 4-hour challenge, the team made their mandatory driver change and put Mikey Taylor into the seat to give him a shot at battling until the end. Through a sequence of fast laps, pit stops and clever strategy by John Church, the #17 was to cycle through to 4th place near the final hour of the race, just behind the two factory backed Hyundai Elantra N TCR of Bryan Herta Autosport and the Alfa Romeo Giulietta Veloce TCR of KMW Motorsports with TMR Engineering.


As the field took the green flag from one of the final few full course caution periods with just over an hour to go, Taylor made a decisive move inside the #33 Hyundai to take a podium position and start the charge towards the front. Unfortunately for him, the damage from earlier in the race to the aerodynamics and gearbox of the car held him back and did not allow the South African born driver to unleash the pace of the Unitronic Audi. Ending the three-race winning streak the team had to settle for a admirable 3rd place finish, only 6 seconds off the winning Hyundai #76 and second place #5 Alfa Romeo. A solid result and points haul for the team means they retain their championship lead by 170 points over the chasing #76 Hyundai.


Throughout the week, the Unitronic JDC-Miller Motorsports team partnered up with ECS TUNING for several activities at their facility and on the track. We’d like to thank them again for their time and enthusiasm around our brand and race program. As a reminder, FREE limited edition posters are still available on ECSTUNING.COM while supplies last. These unique posters not only commemorate our special partnership at Mid-Ohio but they have also been autographed by our pro drivers; Chris Miller and Mikey Taylor.


The next round of the IMSA Michelin Pilot Championship takes place next week at the world famous Watkins Glen International Raceway on June 20th – 23rd. Stay up to date on all our activities, learn more about the team, our pro drivers, the #17 RS 3 LMS TCR race car, our tremendous sponsors and shop for team merch HERE. Make sure to tune into UNITRONIC social media channels for behind the scenes race coverage of all ten championship events!