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Video: Watch pro racer set fastest lap at PCA Club Racing in Watkins Glen

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Article by Damon Lowney
Video courtesy Lehman Keen via YouTube

Every year PCA Club Racing visits more than two-dozen racetracks in North America as members compete to win their respective class championship. While most of the racers have non-automotive day jobs and compete on the weekends, occasionally professional drivers show up for fun, such as Lehman Keen at the club race at Watkins Glen a couple weekends ago.

Those who are familiar with Watkins Glen International know it’s not an easy track to drive, with high speeds throughout and almost no runoff — make an error here and you’ll likely be heading towards a guardrail. Keen, in a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup MR, makes it look all too easy in the video above, threading his race car full throttle through Turns 1 through 4, hitting 161 miles per hour before braking for the Bus Stop at the end of the back straight.

The MR, or Manthey Racing, version of the GT3 Cup improves upon one of the most successful race cars of the era. A glance at the car on Manthey Racing's website confirms many changes to the bodywork, including a carbon-fiber hood with openings to evacuate hot air from the central radiator. New carbon-fiber fenders, front splitter, rear wing, decklid, and underbody panels plus diffuser promise to keep it planted at high speed, while a 12-way ABS system ensures maximum braking performance in myriad conditions. Updates to the suspension round out the package.

Drivers who’ve never visited the track — and veterans looking for an edge — could learn a few things by watching Keen here, such as the correct racing line and braking and turn-in points. Cars and drivers aren’t equal, so be sure to take that into account when you’re hustling your own Porsche around the track.

Watch the video above to see Keen set the weekend’s best lap time, a 1:48.96, a couple seconds faster than the second fastest driver that weekend.

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