The Need For Mazda Speed Birmingham, AL (April 10, 2010) - Randy returned to Grand-Am competition and to Mazda Saturday, finishing eleventh in the 2010 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Street Tuner race at Barber Motorsports...
The Need For Mazda Speed
Birmingham, AL (April 10, 2010) - Randy returned to Grand-Am competition and to Mazda Saturday, finishing eleventh in the 2010 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Street Tuner race at Barber Motorsports Park, in the #27 Freedom Autosport Mazda Speed 3. Randy will be racing for Mazda as a factory driver in a car prepared by Freedom Autosport for the rest of the Continental Tire season. Fans might remember that Randy drove for Mazda for three years, with Tri-Point Engineering, in the World Challenge Touring Class, finishing second in the driver's championship all three years. Randy's early season ride with Irish Mike's Racing ended when young co-driver Andrew Novich left the Continental series to drive in a different series.
The weekend started well when co-driver Eric Foss, a Tri-Point Engineering Mazda Touring car driver from last season, qualified the car in second place. Eric started the race and stayed in the top five in class until pitting under green with fuel mileage problems. The team then pitted again under yellow for a driver change and fuel top off and Randy resumed the race in the top ten, eventually finishing in eleventh place.
"I am very happy to be back with Mazda in cooperation with Freedom Autosport. The Mazda Speed 3 is very reliable which is job one. We had some problems with fuel mileage that we will have to work on but the numerous caution laps helped us. We also had some handling problems in the low speed corners, which was frustrating, but Eric and I worked well together to make the car as fast as it could be. VIR only has one slow corner which will be better suited for our Mazda at our next race. I am not sure if Eric will be joining us again but I would be happy if he did. I am really pleased with Eric as a driver and teammate and his vegan, raw diet is very similar to mine. He did a great job in qualifying and ran very well early in the race until we had to pit."
"The Freedom Autosport team has an excellent personality, with positive attitudes and lots of smiles, but also takes their jobs very seriously. Derek Whitis is a very funny and outrageous character and I greatly enjoyed his company. And they won the race! I want to thank John Doonan and Jim Jordan at Mazda for their help in getting me back into the Mazda family. We will continue to work on the car to make it the most competitive but we are off to a great start. I would also like to thank my personal sponsors WeatherTech, ChaseCam, saferacer.com, Team Janica Racing and Prairie Hills Motorsport Club for their continued support this season."
"Maybe I'm just getting old but I'm struck by the aggression and damage that drivers inflict on each other in this series. If you read my columns, I believe in racing without contact as much as possible. Drivers need to learn to respect each other and their equipment. It was like a demolition derby out there and I have wheel marks all over my car."
Randy will also be driving a one race deal in the Rolex GT race at VIR for Stevenson Motorsports in the #97 Camaro GT.R, with Gunter Schaldach, on April 24 at 12:00 PM ET. That race is taped delayed by two hours, but can be seen the same day at 2:00 PM on SPEED. Randy has raced with Stevenson in the past, twice before at VIR and once in a Pontiac at the 24 Hours at Daytona. The Barber 200 will be broadcast Saturday, April 17, at 3:00 PM ET on SPEED. The next race for Randy in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge will be at Virginia International Raceway on April 24. Randy's next SPEED World Challenge GT race will be next Sunday, April 18 on the streets of Long Beach.
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