Huffmasters and SpeedSource Ready to Run Down Competition in 2006 Ray Huffmaster is a relatively new face in the Grand-Am Cup paddock. Huffmaster competed in only one Grand-Am Cup race thus far but already put his names in the books with a...
Huffmasters and SpeedSource Ready to Run Down Competition in 2006
Ray Huffmaster is a relatively new face in the Grand-Am Cup paddock. Huffmaster competed in only one Grand-Am Cup race thus far but already put his names in the books with a strong top-ten finish. For 2006, Huffmaster returns to Grand-Am Cup competition and sees no better series, better team or better co-driver to share the season with. This year Huffmaster will take on the Grand-Am Cup Street Tuner class with son Rob as his co-driver. Ray and his son both share a highly competitive spirit and love of motorsports. It is this passion that brings them together in 2006 to run down competition with the Grand-Am Cup ST class champions, SpeedSource Race Engineering.
The Huffmasters have joined the SpeedSource Grand-Am Cup ST class effort in their new #65 Huffmaster Racing/SpeedSource Mazda RX-8 EVO II. The car, developed and built by SpeedSource, looks similar to the team's already popular fleet of Mazda RX-8's. However, the Huffmaster car has a slight twist. Traditionally, the team's cars feature a yellow paint scheme with orange trim. On the #65 Huffmaster Racing car the paint scheme is reversed. The car is bright orange with yellow trim, and accented with blue Huffmaster logos. This car will definitely stand out among the Grand-Am Cup competitors.
The relationship between the Huffmasters and SpeedSource started nearly a decade ago. Ray met SpeedSource owner, Sylvain Tremblay, in the late 90's after reading a magazine article featuring Tremblay and his SpeedSource team. Ray, highly impressed with the attention to detail and professionally developed turn-key race cars, decided to purchase a SpeedSource Mazda RX-7 for SCCA club racing ranks. After a successful run in the SCCA, WHRRI, NASA and several championships, Ray decided to move to the next level of competition and compete in the Grand-am Cup. This year, Ray and his son Rob will race their first full season of professional racing in their new car with the SpeedSource championship winning team.
Although the Huffmaster name is new in the Grand-Am Cup, racing is very much a part of their family life. Ray began off-road motocross competition at an early age and continued in many forms of off -road motorsports for years to follow. While Ray was contemplating entering a new motocross venue, his wife Kimber had set up a surprise birthday celebration in Las Vegas with Ray's family, friends and co-workers. The surprise birthday present that year was enrollment for Ray in a three-day formula car racing school at Las Vegas Motorspeedway's Derek Daily Performance Driving Academy.
"I just went down there to have a good time and thought power-sliding these cars around the track would be fast like off-road racing. After realizing the level of skill and concentration it takes to be fast in road racing it became a new challenge to pursue and got me hooked on road racing," states Huffmaster.
Ray's son Rob has followed a similar path to his father and started racing at an early age. At 19 years-old Rob has already been racing cars competitively for four years. At the age of 11, Rob started racing go-karts and motorcycles. He already has a string of race victories, championships and track records in go-karts as well as road racing. Rob has shown all the attributes needed to continue to develop his racing career.
The Huffmaster father-son duo already has a solid finish this year with an 11th place in their first ST class race at Daytona International Speedway. The Huffmasters, who reside in Rochester Hills, Michigan, have enjoyed some excellent racing experiences at their local club track, Waterford Hills Road Racing. They have also spent time at SCCA and NASA race tracks in the Central and Northeast Division. Ray is very excited to see what his co-driver will do this year at the Grand-Am Cup tracks and as any proud father, eagerly lists his son's achievements.
"Rob has had great success all along but especially this last year. Not only did he win the highly competitive SCCA Central Division Spec Miata Toyo class but received the "Driver of the Year "award from the Detroit Region. During last years season he also broke, set, and maintains five new track records in the region and finished runner up at the American Road Race of Champions year-end IT Run-Offs at Road Atlanta.. We started him in road racing about four years ago and he has continued to do extremely well," states Ray.
Ray himself has also been successful in racing but his success runs much deeper than what is on the race track. Ray owns Huffmaster Crisis Management, Inc. a thriving international company specializing in crisis management and premium security solutions for businesses and corporations. The company provides planning, preparation, and response services for a multitude of Fortune 500 companies. They are able to quickly respond to crisis situations and business interruptions such as strikes or labor disputes, violence in the work place such as threats or incidents, plant closings and natural disasters. Just this past year, during the devastating hurricanes that struck the southeastern portion of the U.S., Huffmaster's security teams and executive protection personnel worked to guard disaster struck businesses. They also protected personnel restoring critical infrastructure services, such as cellular service, to area survivors. Huffmaster also provides premium security solutions for corporations that require a higher level of protection such as chemical producing facilities and other terrorist targets. Ray's business philosophy of planning, preparation, and response will come in handy as he readies for Grand-Am Cup competition.
The Huffmasters will travel with SpeedSource to the next installment of Grand-Am Cup competition at VIRginia International Raceway. The race begins Saturday, April 22nd at 3:15 PM EST. Ray is excited to once again be a part of the SpeedSource team.
"The car looks great and the SpeedSource guys are all top shelf. This is the best opportunity to compete at this level, especially with a team like SpeedSource and the driving talents of Sylvain Tremblay and David Haskell to learn from. This will be a development year for us as we are learning the new tracks, racers and teams we will be competing with. We have been big Mazda guys all along and we are really looking forward to it," states Huffmaster.