- New TPC Racing and Alegra Motorsports Collaboration for de Quesada’s First Porsche GT3 Cup Season in Five Years
- De Quesada, TPC and Alegra on Carrera Cup Top-10 Qualifying and Race Pace at Sebring in No. 22 Alegra Motorsports/TPC Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 992
SEBRING, Florida (March 22, 2022) – TPC Racing moved its new partnership with Carlos de Quesada and Alegra Motorsports off to a competitive and productive start last week at Sebring International Raceway in the season-opening races for the IMSA Porsche Carrera Cup North America Presented by the Cayman Islands. The same-day Carrera Cup doubleheader was one of several support series races for Saturday’s milestone 70th Anniversary running of the 12 Hours of Sebring but also marked a significant return for de Quesada.
A veteran Porsche GT3 Cup series competitor and two-time Rolex 24 at Daytona winning driver and car owner, de Quesada made his first race start in five years at Sebring in the No. 22 Alegra Motorsports/TPC Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 992. The last time de Quesada raced in competition, he came home a winner in the GTD class as one of five drivers in his Alegra Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R at the 2017 Rolex 24 At Daytona.
“It’s been a long time since I have been in a proper race car like this,” de Quesada said. “I kept my expectations low, I had back surgery five years ago, and it has been that long since I have raced at this level. I am just trying to get back in shape, and I felt like now was a good time to try it out and see how I did.”
Alegra currently campaigns a Mercedes-AMG GT3 in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTD division. Not wanting to detract from that program, de Quesada contacted longtime friends and competitors TPC Racing to discuss a partnership in Carrera Cup this year.
“It’s such a perfect fit,” said Harris Levitas, TPC Racing Director of Race Operations. “The collaboration between Alegra Motorsports and TPC Racing came about when Carlos purchased his 992 GT3 Cup. His team is really focused on a top finish in GTD in the IMSA WeatherTech Championship with their Mercedes-AMG GT3, so, I spoke with Alegra Team Manager Tony Ditto – and Carlos too – about what we could do to work together. The goal is to keep Alegra from being so stressed on a race weekend, and we came up with the solution of TPC operating the car for Carlos and Alegra to keep their team free to focus on GTD. Carlos has always been such a great friend to our family, and it was a great time being back with him last week.”
Despite a late start to the partnership that didn’t allow for testing, the No. 22 Porsche was quick off the trailer with de Quesada at the wheel. He qualified ninth in the competitive Pro-Am field and held station in the class top-10 from the drop of the green flag in last Thursday’s first 40-minute sprint. De Quesada climbed to as high as eighth in the late stages of the race, but the fast pace and high track temperatures led to a worn rear tire that saw the No. 22 drop out of the top-10 at the finish.
De Quesada had a great start in that afternoon’s second and final race only to be unintentionally spun out by another competitor on the opening lap. Quickly recovering, de Quesada continued in last place on track and began picking off as many positions as he could before the checkered flag flew. The end results of the weekend were a pair of 13th place Pro-Am finishes in both races.
“My goal was to improve every session I went out,” de Quesada said. “I didn’t do any testing before coming to Sebring, but I still improved every lap. I am happy with my results so far in this first race, and I am just going to come back harder and more competitive. So, step by step.”
Levitas and the TPC crew were also encouraged by the positives from their first weekend of competition with de Quesada and Alegra.
“We have only had just over two days on track here and about an hour before arriving in Sebring,” Levitas said. “So, for Carlos to come in and start his first GT3 Cup races in five years and be competitive right off the bat was great. He has been doing a lot of historic racing the last few years, but he has been having so much fun getting back in this competition. The Carrera Cup has already shown so much growth and it is a great series.”
The Type 992 – the latest Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race car – impressed de Quesada.
“It’s just better grip overall,” de Quesada said. “I felt like the brakes are just absolutely amazing. I was able to just go in really deep and stand on them, and it would stop the car and allow me to turn in. And just very impressive with the aero. It felt like more grip around the turns. The car is phenomenal, very well built, a very sturdy car.”
The No. 22 team’s exact schedule of 2022 Carrera Cup races will be determined in the coming months, but the next chapter in a great relationship between TPC and Alegra is off to a good start.
“There have been so many battles between TPC and Alegra over the years,” Levitas said. “My father, Michael Levitas, called to congratulate Carlos when Alegra won its first Rolex 24 in 2007 because we had won the GT class with TPC a year earlier. We all have been friends ever since and I just can’t thank Carlos and Alegra enough for trusting us to do this and having him with us.”
About TPC Racing: TPC Racing is the Mid-Atlantic’s premier maintenance, service, tuning and modification center dedicated solely to Porsche sportscars. TPC Racing specializes in R&D and sales of high-performance modifications for Porsche sports cars and race cars, offering a wide range of vehicle upgrades. Best known for a line of forced induction solutions for the Porsche 911, Cayman and Boxster, a long-time focus on only one make, Porsche, has enabled TPC Racing to become experts in Porsche service, tuning, and racing. In 2000, TPC Racing began entering races under its own banner, scoring an SGS-class Championship in 2004 in the Grand-American Rolex Series and was a class winner in the 2006 Rolex 24 At Daytona, and captured the 2013 and 2016 IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA Gold Cup Championships. More information can be found at http://www.TPCRacing.com.
Images by Steak+Sizzle