Action Express Racing (AXR) driver Axel Sims finds himself in a precarious position as he heads into the decisive 10-hour enduro at Road Atlanta. Holding a slim three-point advantage over Wayne Taylor Racing, Sims and his teammate Pipo Derani have their sights set on securing the championship title. However, their journey to this point has not been without its challenges.
AXR’s season got off to a promising start with a victory at the Sebring 12 Hours, but since then, they have struggled to replicate that success. While the team has been a consistent points scorer, with podium finishes at Laguna Seca and Watkins Glen, they have failed to add to their podium tally in the last three races.
At Mosport, despite setting the fastest lap, a failed strategy saw the Cadillac finish in seventh place. A warm-up crash on cold tires at Road America required hasty repairs and compromised their race, resulting in a sixth-place finish. And a brake issue at Indianapolis left AXR playing catch-up all weekend, ultimately ending in a fourth-place finish.
A Feeling of Missed Opportunities
Reflecting on their season, Sims acknowledges that AXR has left points on the table in several races. Whether it be their own mistakes or unfortunate racing scenarios, Sims believes they could have performed better. He admits to being somewhat surprised that they find themselves leading the championship, considering the challenges they have faced.
Sims recognizes that the new hybrid GTP cars have presented a unique set of difficulties for all teams. The learning curve and the inability to execute a flawless weekend every time have impacted their performance. However, despite these setbacks, AXR has managed to come out in a slightly better position than their competitors.
Looking ahead to the final race of the season, Sims is optimistic but cautious. He acknowledges that even with just one round remaining, the championship standings can change dramatically due to the close points margin. With the top four crews separated by just 38 points, it truly is a winner-takes-all scenario.
While Sims dreams of signing off his season with AXR by clinching the championship title, he understands the enormity of the task at hand. He recognizes that it would be a monumental achievement and one of the most significant accomplishments of his career. However, he remains humble and knows that nothing can be taken for granted in a highly competitive field.
Despite the uncertainty surrounding the championship, Sims already has plans for the future. He is set to rejoin Corvette Racing next year, where he will race the new Z06 GT3.R in IMSA’s GTD Pro class. While his focus is on the present and capturing the championship, the prospect of racing with Corvette Racing excites him and presents new opportunities.
As the season draws to a close, Axel Sims and Action Express Racing find themselves on the cusp of glory. The challenges they have faced throughout the year have tested their resolve, but through it all, they have remained competitive. Whether they can secure the championship remains to be seen, but their journey thus far is a testament to their skill and determination.