Salinas, California (Thursday, October 25, 2018) – US RaceTronics arrived at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca for the Pirelli World Challenge California 8 Hours endurance race. The team will field the No. 6 Lamborghini Huracan Evo in the GT Cup class with 15-year-old Steven Aghakhani, the youngest driver in the field, along with Lamborghini Super Trofeo champions Richard Antinucci and Taylor Proto as their drivers. This will be the first endurance race of the season for the team and has team owner, Shane Seneviratne excited to face the new challenge.
“I’m really excited to participate with Steven Aghakhani in the 8 Hours race this weekend,” Seneviratne said. “This will be our first race with SRO and PWC, and we’re looking forward to working with all the PWC officials and learning more about their series. I’m happy to have Richie and Taylor supporting Steven’s effort. The team’s been working really hard to get all the equipment ready for the 8 hour race. I’m excited and can’t wait to hit the track and get the best result possible.”
Steven Aghakhani will be the youngest driver in the field on Sunday and is eager for the start of his biggest race to date. The 15-year-old Southern California native has been a development driver with US RaceTronics for the past two years and has been tremendously successful in every step of his career.
“I’m feeling really good and extremely pumped for this race,” Aghakhani said. “It’s the biggest one yet and the entire team is going at it with full force. For the race, our biggest thing will be to keep the car safe along with winning our class, and as a challenge we’re looking to even take some of the GT3 cars in the overall positions. I’m extremely grateful to my sponsors and US RaceTronics for their continued support in my racing efforts.”
2017’s Lamborghini Super Trofeo Pro-Am North American and World Champion Taylor Proto joins Aghakhani as the team’s second driver. Proto is currently second in points in the 2018 LSTNA Pro category and had mixed results last month at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. Proto is also looking forward to the challenge of his first endurance race.
“I’m excited to be returning to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca so quickly after racing here with the Super Trofeo series,” Proto said. “I’m hoping we can succeed like we did with the win we had in race one, but without repeating any of the bad luck we had in race two. I’m very excited to be working with Steven, and my thanks go to Shane and Steven’s management in allowing me to come onto this project and race alongside him for California’s premier endurance event. I’m excited for the challenges and know that USRT will do everything in its power to respond to them.”
Richard Antinucci will round out the team of drivers and is happy to be able to share his vast knowledge of racing to his young teammates.
“I’m really looking forward to teaming up with Steven Aghakhani and my friends at US RaceTronics for the 8 hours at Laguna!” Antinucci said. “This marks a very special debut for Steven in his career – first race with the big boys – and I’m more than excited to help him all the way, whilst also focusing on my own performance and that of my friend and other teammate Taylor Proto. Collectively we make a strong lineup, and while they are both less than half my age I plan to bring a lot of experience and input to the table. It’s a great environment in the team and we all can’t wait to get going!”
“All this couldn’t be possible without the guidance and support of Armik Aghakhani and Shane Seneviratne, who together have raised lots of sponsorship and awareness towards the team and Steven’s promising career,” Antinucci added.
Steven’s dad, Armik Aghakhani, is proud of his son and thankful to all the sponsors who have supported Steven throughout his career and most especially for this weekend’s race.
“This is a proud moment for our family and I have so much gratitude for our sponsors,” Aghakhani said. “Without our sponsors we wouldn’t have been able to accomplish what we have. A big thanks to our title sponsors Sada Systems, Magic Laundry Services, US Mail & Logistics, Pro Automotive, Shegerian & Associates Law firm, and LPA. Thank you for your support! Now it’s time for Steven to bring home a win for us. He is ready and has been working hard for this.”
Tomorrow’s first practice for the Pirelli World Challenge California 8 Hours begins at 9:20 a.m. PDT with pre-qualifying starting at 2:00 p.m. PDT. Qualifying sessions are Saturday from 10:35 a.m. to 11:40 a.m., with the top 15 cars participating in the Pole Shootout at 2:40 p.m. PDT. The green flag will drop on Sunday at 9:15 a.m., with the checked flag waving at 5:15 p.m. PDT. Follow the team via live stream at: http://world-challenge.com/streamvideo/ or live timing and scoring at: https://lt-us.tsl-timing.com/184306