Laguna Seca: Brumos Racing preview

Brumos Racing Set to Defend Championship Lead at Laguna Seca Jacksonville, FL: Brumos Racing has long had a special fondness for Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. As the team prepares to make their annual cross-country trek to scenic Monterey for round...

Brumos Racing Set to Defend Championship Lead at Laguna Seca

Jacksonville, FL: Brumos Racing has long had a special fondness for Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. As the team prepares to make their annual cross-country trek to scenic Monterey for round four of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series, expectations for the team run high. Last season saw Brumos heading to Laguna Seca following a somewhat dismal start to their 2008 season. Neither the #58 nor the #59 had scored a top ten finish at that point, but Laguna Seca proved to be a major turning point for Brumos last year.

That turnaround became quickly apparent as David Donohue qualified #58 on the pole, followed by both cars finishing in the top ten, foreshadowing the successful season to come. In the #58 car, Donohue and Darren Law went on to earn 3 poles, 5 podiums, ten top 10's and 4th place in the championship. For #59, Joao Barbosa and J.C. France claimed eleven top 10's, including five 4th place finishes. That consistency paid off, earning them a long-awaited podium as they claimed 3rd place in the season championship.

Although 2008 may have started off with difficulty, 2009 has been a different story, as the streak that began with Laguna Seca last year is still going strong. Brumos' #58 car is currently at the top of the championship points standings following their Rolex 24 victory, VIR podium, and fourth place finish at a rain-soaked New Jersey Motorsports Park. And although Brumos' #59 car suffered mechanical problems in their last outing, their earlier season results have kept them in strong contention at 6th place in the standings.

Team Technical Director Michael Colucci reflected on Brumos' success at Laguna Seca, saying, "It seemed that following some extra testing last year preceding our race there, we really had a breakthrough. The test helped us make some significant improvements, and from that point on, we had the cars set up the way they should be. I think we turned a corner at that race in dealing with the car from an engineering standpoint, which was demonstrated by our results and by David capturing the pole position."

This year #58 qualifying duties will go to Darren Law, who would like nothing better than to put Brumos back on the pole again. "We always enjoy Laguna Seca", he said. "The track is fun, smooth, and challenging with its elevation changes and high speed corners. I would say my favorite part is the left hand turn going up the hill. You have to carry a lot of momentum going in to make a run up that hill, so it is easy to make a mistake. You really have to challenge that corner and take it a lot faster than you think you should. But if any team is up for a challenge, it's Brumos!"

J. C. France and Joao Barbosa are equally anxious to get back to business at a racetrack both enjoy. Barbosa is quite familiar with Laguna Seca, having competed there frequently in other series in the past. "We had some bad luck in our last race, but I am sure Laguna Seca will help us turn that around again this year," he said. "We've had some great races there, and we are really looking forward to our return. Our goal for Laguna is to get #59 back on the podium again."

-credit: br

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Darren Law , David Donohue , Joao Barbosa , J.C. Fra