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Plumb earns Touring Car Rookie of the Year

Plumb earns SPEED World Challenge Touring Car Rookie of the Year Award NEWPORT, R.I., Oct. 30 - Despite the fact that Matt Plumb was only able to compete in eight of 10 Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) SPEED World Challenge Touring Car events...

Plumb earns SPEED World Challenge Touring Car Rookie of the Year Award

NEWPORT, R.I., Oct. 30 - Despite the fact that Matt Plumb was only able to compete in eight of 10 Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) SPEED World Challenge Touring Car events this year due to a lack of sponsorship, the talented driver from Newport, R.I. still won that division's Rookie of the Year award for 2003.

That accomplishment is even more impressive considering that Plumb was competing with a privateer team and not a factory effort.

Plumb's Rookie of the Year award came after he finished seventh in the last race of the season, which was held recently in Puerto Rico. His top finish was a second. He placed in the top 10 in every race he finished.

He placed ninth overall in the national championship, in which 66 drivers earned points.

Highlights of his season included a second-place finish at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Conn., in the rain in May. "I was involved in an incident at the start and fell out of the top 10, so coming back up through the field to finish second was very satisfying, especially in the rain," he noted.

Another race Plumb won't easily forget was the round held in conjunction with the prestigious Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta Motor Sport Park earlier this month. Plumb's BMW slipped out of gear during a standing start and he went from 13th to 22nd, but then he came back on strong to place fifth.

Plumb competed with the duPont Motorsports team headquartered in Pennsylvania. His car was the duPont Motorsports/ERT BMW 325i.

"I have to thank my sponsors: SANZ, Sun Microsystems, Mid-Atlantic Trading, Eurosocks and duPont Motorsports, for giving me this opportunity," Plumb said. "Also I owe much of our success to our engineer, Nick Longhi."

Although Plumb was a rookie this year in the SPEED World Challenge series, he is a champion in the open-wheel ranks. He won the 1998 Skip Barber Formula Dodge championship after only one year in the sport. He competed in the Barber Dodge Pro Series from 1999 through 2001, tying for second in the 2001 championship in that series with two victories and four poles.

He drove an Autosport Porsche in the GT class at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona in 2002 but had to sit out the rest of that year due to a lack of funding.

"My goal after finishing my 2001 season in Barber Dodge was to move on to Toyota Atlantics. However, sponsorship fell through and I ended up sitting out the 2002 season," Plumb explained. "An opportunity presented itself to enter the sports car ranks with the World Challenge Touring car team of duPont Motorsports, and I was grateful to team owner Alfred duPont for the opportunity to keep racing."

"My introduction to closed-wheel racing this year has been very challenging," Plumb added. "SCCA and the World Challenge organization have put together a great series that showcases some very talented drivers. I hopefully will get the opportunity to return next year."

For more information see www.plumbracing.com.

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Series PWC
Drivers Nick Longhi , Skip Barber , Alfred duPont , Matt Plumb