Richmond, CA -- The Gogogear.com Racing Team scored the victory with an Acura Integra with drivers Rich Woo, Ali Arsham, Gordon Pun and Tom Pitre. The team placed eighth overall and first in class completing 253 laps during the 12 hours of competition.
The weather played a big factor in this year's event. At the start of the race, the rain and wind caused havoc and a few cars spun on the opening lap. But the patient teams were rewarded with improved weather later in the day as the wind died down and the rain stopped.
The overall win was once again by a Porsche 911 in the Unlimited class who completed 270 laps. The small displacement Acura Integra was an underdog in the E2 class it was competing in. The competition was filled with Mazda RX7 and Mazda Miata models. This marked the first year that Mazda did not win the E2 class in the history of the event.
The Gogogear.com's Acura Integra running on Falken's Azenis tires finished 4 laps ahead of the second and third place Mazdas. The secret to any endurance race is quick pit stops and no mechanical problems. The Gogogear.com team achieved both of those goals with quick and efficient pit stops, great pit strategy, and absolutely no mechanical problems during the 12 hour race. The only stop for anything other than gasoline was for when switching from wet weather tires to the shaved dry set. Other than that, it was routine fuel every two hours.
Benjamin Penn, the Crew Chief for the team, used a great strategy for pit stops. He elected to time the pit stops to get the car away from heavy congestion on the track to ensure a safe run and consistently quick lap times. This was a big edge as packs of cars in different classes battled throughout the day and night. At night, this was a huge edge as it was difficult to see. Fortunately, the Integra drivers had no problems seeing where they were going thanks to the big PIAA racing lights that made the track as bright as day.
In the end, the 8th place finish for the car was a big win for the Gogogear.com team who have never finished higher than 4th in this annual race despite years of trying and winning many endurance championships. "This was the one race that has always eluded us and we needed a win." Said team Captain, Ali Arsham. "What made it even sweeter was that this year, everyone worked together and we did this all buy ourselves using our own resources." Arsham added. So what is next for the team? Are there any 24 hour races close by?!