ALTON, Va. (October 27, 2002) - Tom Gloy Racing and its drivers raced in the final event of the 2002 Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires Cup. Today was also the last race for Tom Gloy Racing; the team is closing doors after nearly 28 years in the racing business. Owner Tom Gloy has decided to stay in racing but to not own his own Trans-Am team.
His drivers Butch Leitzinger and Randy Ruhlman raced in the VIR SpeedFest Presented by the Justin Bell GT Motorsports Experience at Virginia International Raceway. Leitzinger finished fourth and Ruhlman finished 19th. The Gloy duo had spectacular on track performances during the 12 events this year. The Tommy Bahama entry posted three wins five poles, eight top-five finishes, nine top-ten finishes. Leitzinger always displaying the relaxed Tommy Bahama persona finished second in the drivers' championship and also won the AmeriSuites Rookie of the Year award. Ruhlman driving the Preformed Line Products/Coyote Closure Chevrolet Corvette had the best year of his driving career bringing home two podium finishes, four top-five finishes (one-second and one-third) and nine top-ten finishes.
Leitzinger qualified third in the Gloy prepared Chevrolet Corvette at 107.553 mph (1:49.453), 0.124 off of the pole speed, for today's 100 mile event on the 3.27-mile track. Leitzinger led the series with five pole positions making his 11th top-three start in 12 events this season.
"I'm sorry that we were not able to finish today on a triumphant note," said Leitzinger. "But, what I do have to say this season was wonderful and I am proud to be part of Tom Gloy Racing. For the team to bring me up to speed so quickly speaks volumes for their talent and total professionalism. With the team closing after this race, I am glad that I, as a driver, had the opportunity in my career to drive for such a fine organization. This has been one the happiest seasons of my driving career. I've also not worked with a better sponsor than Tommy Bahama. Their support and understanding was beneficial to us. I am happy to have represented them and worked with them."
"I'd like to thank Butch and the team for such a great season and for the multiple years of support from Tommy Bahama." said Gloy. "Butch is one of the most professional drivers I have worked with in my career. He is a true gentleman on and off the race track. I would also like to thank and congratulate Randy on finishing seventh this season. Combining our excellent personnel with Randy's strong driving and testing talents, has brought him the best results of his driving career. He is definitely the most improved in the series. He and his family have been great to work with. This was the last event for Tom Gloy Racing in Trans-Am; I will continue to be involved in future racing ventures."
Ruhlman started eighth on the 17-turn road course that is located near his home in North Carolina. Early in the race, while running in the top-ten, a mechanical problem forced him out of the race.