Closes championship-winning weekend with huge win in final IMSA LMP3 race
Braselton, Ga (15 October 2023) - Jr III (“Junior-Three”) Racing scored its first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar win with a victory in the season-ending Motul Petit Le Mans event at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. The ten-hour race marked the final race for the LMP3 category in IMSA WeatherTech competition as the team scored the win after having captured the IMSA VP Fuels Championship earlier in the weekend.
Teaming up as a trio for the first time with Jr III Racing was Garett Grist, Dakota Dickerson, and Bijoy Garg in the No. 30 Wing Ligier JS P320. Garg, who secured the 2023 VP Racing SportsCar Challenge Championship on Friday, qualified for the trio securing a third place starting position on the LMP3 grid.
Garg powered through the first 113 laps leading the way on 34 of those laps. Dickerson was next to take over the Ligier for a stint before passing to Grist. On lap 163 Dickerson was back behind the wheel. During the seventh caution period of the ten hour race, Dickerson came into the pits in second, and due to an excellent pit stop by the Jr III Racing crew Dickerson was back to the top spot where he defended until lap 265 when the team came to the pits to get ahead of a potential caution when an LMP3 went off course.
Dickerson worked his way back up to the front of the field before handing the car to Grist on lap 303. Grist kept the lead until a pit stop on lap 347 put him into second. The Canadian battled for first until he was able to get a run out of turn seven that put him into the lead with just 20 minutes remaining.
The 26th Annual Petit Le Mans race ended under caution securing the first place position for Grist and the rest of the Jr III Racing team.
This race was bitter sweet as it was the final IMSA outing for Jr III Racing for the time being. Next year, team owner Billy Glavin will manage two LMP2 entries for United Motorsports, although the recently-expanded Jr III Racing shop will still be home to its vintage prep program as several mechanics will stay on board to help maintain the cars for clients.
Garett Grist: “What an absolutely incredible job by the team for the last three years. It's the most fun I've had in racing, and the best I've been physically and mentally, and I thank them for that – and all their hard work coming into the last race with such a great car. They never gave up and continued to put the effort in. I think we came here with the best car we've had. We put absolutely everything into it and it paid off. It's a great way to end the Jr lll Racing P3 era.”
Dakota Dickerson: “What a crazy, surreal feeling! We've been so close so many times, I can't even. Back to 2022, this team has been working so hard to get this win and to get it in the last race of the LMP3 class makes it even more special. So a big shout out to all the crew, our stops were perfect today, our strategy was on point, and we had the fastest race car on track once again. I’m just glad we could finally put it all together and get the boys a win. So, so happy right now.”
Bijoy Garg: “Race winners! Nothing more needs to be said. Truly, what an effort by everyone at Jr lll Racing – starting with Dakota and Garett, who put down some of the most amazing stints I've ever seen. It is such a strategy game with a 10-hour race, you were never sure who was going to win. And then Garett just sent that from so far back and made it work. I'm so proud of him and proud of the whole Jr lll team – three for three this weekend, and a championship! So proud of them.”