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Road Atlanta: Autosport Development race report

Season ends on disappointing note for Autosport Development, but team looks forward to competitive 2007 series Trenton, MI -- October 7, 2006 -- The drama of racing, with its highs and lows, is what makes the sport so appealing Autosport ...

Season ends on disappointing note for Autosport Development, but team looks forward to competitive 2007 series

Trenton, MI -- October 7, 2006 -- The drama of racing, with its highs and lows, is what makes the sport so appealing Autosport Development's Dane Moxlow once said in an interview.

"You work hard, put in long hours and invest your blood, sweat and tears in order to race. Watching what you've done, seeing all the work pay off - or not - is what it's all about."

Unfortunately for Michigan-based Autosport Development there was no pay-off in the highly anticipated Round Nine of the SPEED World Challenge at Road Atlanta on Friday, September 29th. Mechanical problems caused both Trenton Forging GTOs to exit the race early.

Months of preparation, long hours toiling at the track and the excitement of seeing 18-year-old Dane Moxlow make his rookie debut alongside mentor and long-time family friend Stu Hayner were not enough to overcome the technical issues that plagued the team throughout the week.

Broken belts, driveline problems and the wrong parts shipped overnight were just a few of the complications the crew faced. Amidst all the trials, they remained optimistic and worked feverishly to address the problems that arose. By Friday morning, Crew Chief Chris Trapp was confident their reengineering efforts would see the cars through the race.

No one will argue that sound mechanics, an experienced crew and talented drivers are the driving forces behind any successful team. Luck is also a major factor. For some reason, the racing gods chose not to shine favorably on the team this day and good fortune wasn't theirs.

While Yorba Linda's Stu Hayner, driver of the No. 21 Trenton Forging Pontiac GTO, had a good start up the hill, he knew early on in the race the car wasn't handling right.

"Coming down the back straight away in fifth gear, I heard something shaking," said Stu. "The car didn't seem to pull well and slowed down. I thought the vibration knocked the car out of gear but I looked and it was in gear. I coasted up hill, downhill and into the pits."

University of Tennessee freshman Dane Moxlow, driving the No. 20 Trenton Forging Pontiac GTO, felt he had a great start even though he wasn't in the desired position through turn one.

"It was an interesting first lap," said Dane, who enjoyed his first-ever standing start. "The standing start was weird with all those people that close. I was moving up though and passed two to three cars. It definitely would have been a good race.

"On the back straight, I started losing power like the engine was missing ," added Dane. "I got a low battery message. I had been experiencing alternator belt problems. We tried a quick fix, and it didn't work. We didn't have the resources here to do it right, I guess."

Unable to resolve the problems from the pits, the race officially ended for both cars by the 10th lap.

In racing as in life, it's the setbacks and defeats that make the successes and victories much sweeter. Although the season ended on a disappointing note, Autosport Development looks forward to a fun, competitive and a winning season in 2007. The team thanks all the fans for their support and encouragement throughout the year and extends best wishes to the remaining competitors in Round 10.

-credit: Autosport Development

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Series PWC
Drivers Stu Hayner , Dane Moxlow