Mazda RX-8 Takes First Professional Win at Hands of SpeedSource Race Engineering Phoenix, AZ - In only their third race with the car SpeedSource Race Engineering gave the Mazda RX-8 its first professional sportscar win in North America.
Mazda RX-8 Takes First Professional Win at Hands of SpeedSource Race Engineering
Phoenix, AZ - In only their third race with the car SpeedSource Race Engineering gave the Mazda RX-8 its first professional sportscar win in North America. SpeedSource Race Engineering dominated the competition at Phoenix International Raceway. The two hour and thirty minute race ran without caution and the #70 Mazdaspeed Motorsports Development / Mazda USA Mazda RX-8 took the win by over twenty seven seconds.
When the race started at 1:15 PM on Saturday April 10th, David Haskell started the #70 Mazda RX-8 from second on the nineteen car grid. When the green flag came out Haskell settled into a nice pace running in second place for much of his entire stint. When he ducked into the pits for fuel and tires he was on the bumper of the leading car.
Team owner and 2001 Grand Am Cup Champion Sylvain Tremblay took over and left the pits with one of the quickest pit stops of the day. The leading BMW ducked into the pits laps later and when it re-emerged it was thirty seconds behind the SpeedSource Mazda.
"Our crew made my job easy!" exclaimed Tremblay after the race. "With a thirty second lead after our pitstop I only had to hold on to our lead. This is our first factory program. We've been a team since 1995 and had a lot of winning programs and were the 2001 Grand Sport champions. (It's great) to have the confidence of a large corporation like Mazda to trust us with a racing program."
"The whole class is just really tough," added Haskell, the 2001 TheRaceSite.com Grand Sport Rising Star of the Year. "The core group has been together for awhile, and they've done a lot of pit stop practice in the shop."
SpeedSource's success wasn't limited to only the #70 SpeedSource Mazda RX-8. The team placed all four of its cars in the top ten finishing positions. Scott Schlesinger and David Tuaty scored a fifth place finish in the team's #68 Ollieair.com / GMD Mortgage Services Mazda RX-8.
The #66 International Jet Traders / Gulfstream Brazil Mazda RX-8 took home seventh place finish with Marcello Abello and Benoit Theetge driving. The #67 Discount Rental Mazda RX-8 scored an eighth place finish with Rich Walker and Nick Fanelli sharing the driving duties.
With the strong finishes the SpeedSource effort has now moved all four cars into the top ten in the Team Championship. The #68 effort, with three straight top ten finishes, sits third in the Team Points.
When talking about the RX-8 program you can hear the excitement in team owner Tremblay's voice. He spoke of the future of the program after the buzz of the win wore off a little:
"We have four cars, we'll have five at Mont-Tremblant, and we sold two more to customer teams. There is a lot of interest in more cars. Despite our vast rotary knowledge it's a huge undertaking. It's huge for us. This is the future of the RX-8. It's wonderful for the team, and wonderful for Mazda."
Interested parties can contact Sylvain Tremblay about ready to race RX-8s through the team's website: www.speedsourceinc.com or by calling (954) 578 7071.
The Phoenix Twin 200s will be broadcast on SPEED Channel on Sunday, April 18, with the Grand Sport race at noon ET and the Sport Touring race at 1 p.m. ET.
In addition to MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development, the team is also working with Sparco USA, Hawk Brakes, Dynamic Suspension, and Racing Hart Wheels on its 2004 Grand-Am Cup RX-8 program.