Shift Up Now Athlete Ashley Freiberg won both races in the 991 class during the third event of the Porsche Sprint Challenge season at VIRginia International Raceway on Saturday and Sunday, June 3-4, 2023.
The weekend began with two practice sessions on Friday. Freiberg was immediately up to speed, topping both sessions in the 991 class, sporting the Shift Up Now livery in her MDK Motorsports Porsche Cup Car. Her closest competitor was less than half-a-tenth of a second behind in speed for the second session, indicating the potential for close qualifying the following day.
Track temperatures were cooler on Saturday morning, making the track fast for qualifying. Freiberg’s team found space on the race track for her to make the most of her new Yokohama tires. In her strongest qualifying performance of the season, she secured the pole position for both races. Her fastest lap was half-a-second faster than the second-fastest 991 entry.
Later that day, race one took place under warmer temperatures, causing challenging conditions on a slicker track. Freiberg started the 40-minute sprint from the pole in the 991 class, and inside the top ten overall, among the faster, newer-generation 992 Porsche Cup Cars.
She had a strong start, holding position and moving up the overall leaderboard over the first few laps. After the first full-course caution flew, tough track conditions led to another yellow, shortly after the restart.
At the final restart, Freiberg capitalized on her strong pace to make up more ground. She had a commanding lead in the 991 class, with several 992 cars between her and her closest competitor. With that, she continued her winning streak and finished in the top five overall.
Sunday’s race started earlier in the day under cooler track temperatures. Once again starting from the pole, Freiberg made another strong start. She took advantage of the track conditions to make the most of her Yokohama tires, running times similar to her qualifying pace.
She created a large gap between her and her closest, 991-class competitor and once again made her mark by running among the 992 car field. In a repeat of Saturday’s competition, no one in her class was able to challenge her for the led. Her fastest lap was nearly a second faster than that of the second-fastest in the 991 class.
When the checkered flag fell, she added another impressive victory to her resume and finished the race sixth overall.
“What an amazing weekend for the entire MDK Motorsports crew,” said Freiberg. “I love how hard we all work to get faster and to be better, it truly is a team effort to be the best we can be every single race weekend. I’m just so grateful for my supporters for allowing me to live my passion; Yokohama Tire, ShiftUp Now, Trak Racer and Bell Helmets.
“I’m so excited to get to Mid-Ohio and continue to perfect my craft behind the wheel, and work with my crew to keep fine tuning and getting faster! Now it’s time for me to get on my sim and begin the prep work!”
The winning weekend extends Freiberg’s championship lead heading into event four. She’ll be on track later this month, when the Porsche Sprint Challenge series heads to Mid Ohio on June 30 – July 2, 2023.