PUMPELLY AND TRG: CONTINENTAL PROGRAM SET FOR BREAKOUT YEAR Petaluma, CA (February 24, 2010)- When Spencer Pumpelly joined TRG in the fall of 2006, few would have predicted that it would be the beginning of a four-year relationship. Headed in...
PUMPELLY AND TRG: CONTINENTAL PROGRAM SET FOR BREAKOUT YEAR
Petaluma, CA (February 24, 2010)- When Spencer Pumpelly joined TRG in the fall of 2006, few would have predicted that it would be the beginning of a four-year relationship. Headed in to next weekend's Grand Prix of Miami, the team is hopeful to continue that relationship despite a tough economy and sponsorship challenges.
"TRG has been a great home for me and I've been really proud of the programs we've run since I came to the team," stated Pumpelly. "This is one of the few places where you can come in and align with a professional roster of teammates, and drive in any number of categories, from amateur and club events, to the top levels of sportscar and even NASCAR. When I look back at the last several years, I've been really proud to have taken the wins that we have, and in particular watch some of my teammates grow and mature as professional drivers."
Known as a key figure in TRG's development program, Spencer has played a major role in the development of several drivers. Having driven with such teammates as Duncan Ende, achieving his first professional race win last year, and working with Scott Schroeder, who has achieved podium results in both Continental Challenge and Rolex GT, Pumpelly is one of a very small group of drivers who has not only the patience and personality to coach, but also the talent and tenacity to win. With six wins in Grand-American competition, including the 2006 Rolex 24 at Daytona, Pumpelly is one of the most sought after drivers in the series.
"Spencer is a really rare find in sports car racing," stated TRG CEO Kevin Buckler. "He's great with new drivers, he really enjoys taking the time to develop someone and examine their approach to driving and racing, but he's also brutally fast. With a field as deep as both the Rolex and Continental series are, I've seen Spencer do things that are just amazing. At Laguna Seca in 2008, we had a pit miscue sent him to the back of the field, and with only a few laps left he still found his way to the front."
Looking towards the remainder of the 2010 season, Spencer is signed full-time to be part of TRG's Continental Challenge GS program, yet at the moment the team is in a state of limbo as it continues to search for sponsored teammates.
As evidenced in the team's podium finish in the season opener at Daytona, the new rules package is very favorable toward Porsche, and with three years of experience running in the category, the team feels confident that they have a top program under their tent. With the very respected and championship winning Tucker Merten running the program, the team has been allowed a major performance boost with a 3.8liter engine, a huge gain over last year's 3.6.
"The 3.8 engine will have a major impact on our team's performance in 2010," stated Pumpelly. "Having more power is of course always an advantage, but the real advantage comes from the side benefits. Since we now have a strong power plant, we can run a much more stock program, meaning our reliability will be solid. With Tucker and his team we have a consistent and strong group of guys and are some of the fastest on pit road. I believe all reliability issues and the little gremlins that have haunted us in the past are finally gone."
With the Grand Prix of Miami just over a week away, the search for a teammate continues. With multiple wins and podiums at Homestead-Miami Speedway, everyone at TRG is really hoping that they can find the necessary sponsorship or teammate to keep the program going.
"We've spent three years building this program, and I'm proud of the success we've achieved," stated Kevin Buckler. "When I think about how much drivers like Duncan Ende and Scott Schroeder have grown and improved under our umbrella, I take it as a great compliment to the quality of our program and leaders like Spence. Our program is stronger than ever. Tucker is as good as they get for this type of program, and with the new 3.8 engine we can compete at any track. The time is now to make this program happen, I certainly hope we can find the means to. This car and team will be a threat to win every time it is on the track and some young driver is going to find an unbelievable opportunity to launch his career with us this year."