SCC: Birmingham: Freedom Autosport preview

Randy Pobst and Eric Foss Join Freedom Autosport at Barber LEEDS, Ala.--Freedom Autosport will be a formidable competitor at this weekend's GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series race at Barber Motorsports Park. Their two Mazda ...

Randy Pobst and Eric Foss Join Freedom Autosport at Barber

LEEDS, Ala.--Freedom Autosport will be a formidable competitor at this weekend's GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series race at Barber Motorsports Park. Their two Mazda MX-5s have earned a win and a third-place finish this season, the MAZDASPEED3 is quickly developing, and the talented driver lineup includes Mazda veterans Randy Pobst and Eric Foss.

Pobst and Foss will co-drive the No. 27 Freedom Autosport MAZDASPEED3. It's the Freedom Autosport debut for both drivers, but the wealth of experience that each driver brings to the team promises great results.

Foss certainly knows how to get results in a Mazda: two wins and eight top-four finishes helped propel him to the 2008 SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup championship. Foss's most recent GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series success includes a third-place finish at the 2009 season finale at Virginia International Raceway.

Pobst was a Mazda factory driver for three years and is well known as a veteran sports car racer. He is looking forward to joining forces with Freedom Autosport after witnessing their professionalism firsthand in 2009. "We started as competitors," notes Pobst. "A couple of the best races I had last year were against Tom Long in the Freedom Mazda MX-5. Getting back together with Mazda is like reuniting with an old friend, and Freedom Autosport is a quality, first-class team."

"Pobst and Foss are two of the best drivers anywhere," says Freedom Autosport team co-owner Derek Whitis. "It's a privilege to have them with us and we're thrilled to have their expertise in our developing MAZDASPEED3 program."

Rhett O'Doski and Andrew Carbonell will be behind the wheel of the No. 26 Freedom Autosport Mazda MX-5. After giving the team a second-place finish at Barber in 2009, Carbonell is anxious for more.

"Last year's podium was a great achievement and really helped to get the momentum going, as we went on to earn a couple more podiums," says Carbonell. "Considering that we started off the year on the podium at Daytona, I have some pretty high expectations for this coming event at Barber! Being the tight track that it is, the Freedom Autosport Mazda MX-5 works well there. The constant radius corners and tight brake zones are exactly what the MX-5 thirsts for."

Derek Whitis and Tom Long echoed Carbonell's sentiment that the Mazda MX-5 will feel right at home on the twists and turns of the 2.3-mile, 17-turn Barber circuit. Whitis and Long won at Homestead last month in the No. 25 Freedom Autosport Mazda MX-5, and Barber is another venue where they hope to show off Mazda's handling abilities.

"Winning at Homestead was a great testament to Mazda and the whole Freedom team. Tom didn't put a wheel wrong or the Honda would have passed us," says Whitis. "Barber's tight setup with the corkscrew and the chicane is one of our favorite tracks. Without the power of the other cars, we need as many corners as possible."

"Barber Motorsports Park has proven to be an excellent circuit for our Mazda platforms, and I'm really excited to get back to the beautiful rolling hills of Alabama and a fantastic facility," agrees Long. "I feel like our result last year was not indicative of true performance, so there's definitely some unfinished business to say the least."

Freedom Autosport will be aiming for a second consecutive Street Tuner win this Saturday, April 10, when the GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series race begins at 4:00 p.m. CT.

-source: freedon autosport

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Randy Pobst , Tom Long , Andrew Carbonell , Rhett O'Doski , Derek Whitis , Eric Foss
Teams Freedom Autosport