Gigliotti led for the next 19 laps before surrendering the top spot to Pilgrim. When Pilgrim's engine quit just three laps from the finish, rookie Lawson Aschenbach grabbed the lead in his 911, while O'Connell settled into second. Gigliotti, meanwhile, faded back to third, a victim of overheating tires. Ultimately, another Porsche passed him, but he was still able to finish an impressive Fourth overall.
The names and makes may have changed, but fortunately for fans of production-based road racing, it looks like the true spirit of Trans-Am is alive and well in SPEED GT.
2006 St. Petersburg SPEED World Challenge GT Results
1. Lawson Aschenbach, Porsche 911 GT3
2. Johnny O'Connell, Cadillac CTS-V (-7.973)
3. Ricardo Imery, Porsche 911 GT3 (-21.726)
4. Lou Gigliotti, Chevrolet Corvette C6 (-24.251)
5. Bob Woodhouse, Dodge Viper (-24.540)
Sonny Whelen ran a trouble-free...
Sonny Whelen ran a trouble-free race, finishing 12th in this beautiful "Boxcar" ex-Phil McClure Corvette.
O'Connell finished Second...
O'Connell finished Second in this LS2-powered CTS-V.
Tony Gaples (foreground) battled...
Tony Gaples (foreground) battled this Viper throughout the race. He finished Ninth.
Reese qualified his Banner...
Reese qualified his Banner Engineering Corvette in Fifth place. He moved up to Third on the second lap but was hit from behind by Tommy Archer's Viper. The crash heavily damaged his Corvette, and he ended up in 21st.
A disappointed Gigliotti takes...
A disappointed Gigliotti takes a minute to cool off before climbing out of his Corvette after the race. He and his car had the right stuff for most of the afternoon.