BRASELTON, Georgia (November 12, 2021) – Atlanta Speedwerks scored a podium finish at their hometown race on Friday, moving from the rear of the field at the start to second in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge finale at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.
Tyler Stone and Ryan Eversley, co-driving together for the first time this week, combined for the runner-up finish in the No. 94 Hella Pagid/Inline Electric Honda Civic TCR. It was the fifth podium of the season for Atlanta Speedwerks, who scored wins at both Watkins Glen rounds of the championship.
Stone, making his lone appearance of the season for Atlanta Speedwerks, started on the last row of the grid while working to get up to speed. By the time Stone came to pit lane under a full course caution with 68 minutes remaining in the two-hour race to hand the car to Eversley, he was in ninth-place in the 17-car TCR-class field.
“I’ve been on the podium before, just never on this level,” Stone said. “I’ve been close many times. I’ve had a lot of top 10s, but to make it to the podium is just an awesome feeling. To take the car from the very back row of this awesome and very talented field all the way up to ninth and turn over a good car to Ryan in clean condition with everyone wrecking in front of me is amazing. I probably dodged three or four potential wrecks. It was a fun drive. Atlanta Speedwerks did a great job of providing a winning setup and a few more laps I think we might have been on the top spot.”
Eversley took over the charge from there. The Atlanta Speedwerks car was sixth under yet another yellow, the third of five in the race, with 48 minutes remaining, but two laps after that Eversley sat in fourth place. He stayed there through two more full course cautions in the final 42 minutes of the race, and remained there with just three corners left in the race.
The second and third place cars were ready to race going into Road Atlanta’s Turn 10 at the end of the backstretch, and when they made side-to-side contact through the corner it killed both cars’ momentum and opened the door for Eversley. Eversley, still carrying that momentum, swung through the final corners and across the stripe for the final podium position.
“To come home on the podium with a car that was clearly the fourth-fastest of the race, I’ll take that every time,” Eversley said. “I’m really happy with that. Tyler picked up a second just in sector one in three laps of the race. He was right there already and I actually applaud him for not being too aggressive. He got stuck behind some slower cars at the start and if he had tried too hard to get by it could have been the end of the day. I’m really happy with the pit stop, I’m just happy. I’ve got to thank Honda and HPD, the Atlanta Speedwerks guys, and everyone who made this happen at my and the team’s home race.”
Eversley, who drove with five different co-drivers during the 10-race season, finished in a tie for third in the season-long championship point standings.
The podium finish was a strong end to the season for Atlanta Speedwerks, coming at the team’s home track of Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta and with partners Hella Pagid and Inline Electric on board.
“This was a great way to end the season,” Atlanta Speedwerks owner Todd Lamb said. “It’s been two years since Tyler has driven with us, and he knocked the rust off quickly and kept improving his lap times even during the race. The crew did a fantastic job of prepping the car and had a flawless pair of pit stops, and Ryan brought it home with a really good run and a great final lap. The whole race, including having Hella Pagid and Inline Electric here with us, has us looking forward to 2022 already.”