Series Mid-Ohio round eight preview

Ford Racing Mustang Challenge Ready for Mid-Ohio Return Race LEXINGTON, OH--17 June 09--With a full card of Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series and KONI Sports Car Challenge races on the schedule, there will be plenty of racing action this weekend...

Ford Racing Mustang Challenge Ready for Mid-Ohio Return Race

LEXINGTON, OH--17 June 09--With a full card of Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series and KONI Sports Car Challenge races on the schedule, there will be plenty of racing action this weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the EMCO Gears Classic. But of all the events, one of the closest battles could well come when the Ford Racing Mustang Challenge takes the green flag for 40 minutes of sprint action as nearly 20 identical Ford Mustang FR500S machines go door-to-door for round eight of the 2009 season.

The race weekend comes hard on the heels of a highly competitive outing north of the border at Mosport International Speedway, which saw Tony Buffomante break through to take his debut Mustang Challenge victory with Andrew Caddell recovering from a first lap spin to finish in second ahead of Jason von Kluge.

The Mid-Ohio paddock will see some familiar faces rejoining for round 8 of the 2009 season, as Jim Click, Mike McGovern, John McKenna, Joe Lee Middlebrooks, Zach Lutz, and George Winkler are all slated to be back in action this weekend at Mid-Ohio.

This is just the second season of competition for Mustang Challenge, which is the only national race series operated by a track, as the series was formed in collaboration between Miller Motorsports Park and Ford Racing. The series return visit to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course is one that several in the Mustang Challenge paddock have been looking forward to, as Mustang Challenge grows from an eight-race championship in 2008 to a 10-round battle in 2009.

The Mid-Ohio round, won last year by Jamie Slone, will see the series practice and qualify on Friday, with the 40 minute race set for a 12:40 PM start time on the 2.258-mile natural terrain circuit situated between Columbus and Cleveland.

Drivers to watch include championship contenders Andrew Caddell and Ted Anthony Jr., who had a first-lap coming together at Mosport after the duo started on the front row. Pratt Cole feels like he's found his podium moxie once again after getting his Mustang FR500S fully on song, as Jason von Kluge will look to ride the momentum from two podiums in the last three races into a track where he has previous experience.

Karl Thomson will return to action in the No. 00 "Media Car," and is focused on improving on his strong sixth-place debut result at Mosport. Buffomante liked the view of the podium ceremonies from the top step and will no doubt be hungry to duplicate that, although he'll no doubt have to fight off Caddell's advances, as the 08 champ turned 21 earlier this week and will finally be able to actually sip the champagne on the podium!

-credit: www.MustangChallenge.com

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Series Road racing
Drivers Pratt Cole , Karl Thomson , Jim Click , Mike McGovern , Jamie Slone , Andrew Caddell , Jason von Kluge , George Winkler , Zach Lutz