Matt, Hugh Plumb and Acura Close to Dual Grand-Am Titles in Fenton Acura
The final, and longest race in the 2006 Grand-Am Cup series Street Tuner class season is set for Oct. 8 at Virginia International Raceway, and Acura now has the lead for the Manufacturer Championship.
To make things even better, Bill Fenton Motorsports Acura RSX-S drivers Matt and Hugh Plumb are 11 points away from sharing the season Driver Championship.
Matt and Hugh finished fourth today in the 200-mile race on the new Miller Motorsports Park circuit near Salt Lake City, Utah., driving the team's #27 Acura RSX-S. Bill Fenton and co-driver Bob Beede were 12th in the new #29 Acura RSX-S.
"I'm sorry Hugh and I only finished fourth today," said Matt with a wry smile. "That ends our streak of five consecutive podium finishes. Bill's team, and Acura, both thrive on consistency, and a consistent race car is what the crew gives us every race."
Matt finished only 22 seconds out of third place, a fact largely caused by oil from a car that blew its engine.
"The car lost the engine right in front of me and I sailed off into the desert on the oil it spilled on the track," said Matt. "There was oil everywhere, and no warning from the corner workers. The next lap I was hit in the rear by a BMW and spun again."
"I really had a fairly uneventful run," said Hugh Plumb. "We started the race in seventh, and I was up to fourth when I handed it off to my brother. We really didn't have a car that was suited to this track, and that's not the team's or Acura's fault. The stock gearing in the RSX needs high rpm's to work efficiently. We don't have the low-end torque some cars do. I'd use the old phrase 'horses for courses' to describe it."
"I've never shifted so many times per lap in any car in my life," said Fenton. "The track is 4.5 miles with 24 turns, but the turns are so similar that other than the 3,500-foot main straight, you're just rowing back and fourth between third and fourth gears all day."
Fenton Motorsports Southern Auto Auction/Acura Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles drivers have earned Acura's Manufacturer Championship points at seven of the nine races held so far this season, but this weekend it was the third place by the i-MOTO Racing Acura TSX team of Roger Foo and Glenn Bocchino that earned them.
"The depth of the Acura entries in this series is excellent," noted Fenton. "Acura has two wins in nine races compared to five for Chevrolet, but we're now ahead of them in points 282 to 280. Everybody is going to have to be on their toes at VIR next month."
The only other manufacturer with a reasonable chance to win the title is BMW, which has 271 points after its win today.
The race was taped for a Sept. 23 at 1 p.m. ET televising on the SPEED Channel.