As the SRO America season races towards the close of the championship, the Heart of Racing (HOR) team will travel to Sebring, Florida this weekend for the final outing ahead of the season finale October 6-8th at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Hannah Grisham and Rianna O’Meara-Hunt will look to rebound after bad luck at Road America struck the duo, keeping them from competing in the second of the two races of the weekend. Grisham had landed the No. 26 Aston Martin Vantage GT4 in a pole award position, but unfortunately the team had to go to a backup car after an incident during O’Meara-Hunt’s qualifying run forcing the ladies to start at the rear of the Pirelli GT4 America field. O’Meara-Hunt was then sent into the wall by another competitor keeping the ladies from competing in Sunday’s race.
“Looking forward to getting back in the car for Sebring,” said O’Meara-Hunt. “Obviously Road America didn’t go as planned, but for me it was a round of learning a lot. I have done some sim work for Sebring to try to get familiar with the track before getting there so hopefully it speeds up the learning curve for me, as we do have a race on Friday afternoon. All and all with it being the last two rounds of the season coming up, Hannah and I are looking to maximize them and finally get our podium finish!”
Grisham and O’Meara-Hunt look to get their first podium of the season, and will have three opportunities to do so this weekend. Sebring International Raceway will host a special third race this weekend to make up for a canceled race at NOLA Motorsports Park earlier in the season. Though O’Meara-Hunt will be making her Sebring debut, Grisham has had several starts at the Florida track, including two wins during a World Racing League event in the 2022 season.
“Sebring should be a busy weekend with the added make up race from NOLA,” said Grisham. “I think it’s a great opportunity to have another shot at a podium finish. Rianna and I have had a fair amount of ups and downs this year but that is racing. We have a really strong car, team, and I think we have the pace of a front-running car. I’m very excited to see how these last two race weekends go!”
Roman De Angelis and Gray Newell will team up for the Heart of Racing’s second Pirelli GT4 America entry with the No. 24 Aston Martin Vantage. The duo scored their second win of the season at Road America. Both De Angelis and Newell have starts at Sebring, De Angelis most recently competed during the 12 Hours of Sebring in March of this season with the IMSA WeatherTech Championship.
“Sebring is one of my favorite tracks on the schedule because it has so much character and I think it will be a good track for the Aston Martin GT4,” said De Angelis. “We saw how the Aston was better in cooler air at Road America, so we’ll see how the air affects us in the Florida heat. Sebring will be fun because we have the third race which will have the same qualifying times as before, so we should start fifth. The Heart of Racing team has had some good luck there in the past with the GT3 program, so I don’t see why we can’t do the same in the GT4s.”
Newell will pull double duty as he will also compete in GT America powered by AWS in the No. 25 Heart of Racing Aston Martin. Newell has scored four podiums so far this season in GTA with two additional finishes just short of the podium in fourth. Newell currently sits fifth in the GTA GT4 points championship heading into the weekend at Sebring.
The first race of the weekend will be Friday afternoon with the Pirelli GT4 America NOLA make up race at 5:00pm ET. The team will see an additional four races for the weekend split on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning.