MARCHAND SCORES CARTECH FM CHALLENGE WIN AT MID-OHIO Michigan driver charged from the rear of the field to lead Lawrence and Pipitone to the checkered flag LEXINGTON, OHIO (June 3, 2009) -- The Cartech FM Challenge has new race winner in 2009,...
MARCHAND SCORES CARTECH FM CHALLENGE WIN AT MID-OHIO
Michigan driver charged from the rear of the field to lead Lawrence and Pipitone to the checkered flag
LEXINGTON, OHIO (June 3, 2009) -- The Cartech FM Challenge has new race winner in 2009, following Round Three on Sunday (May 31) at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Juan Marchand, in stellar drive from the rear of the field, captured the win ahead of Bruce Lawrence and Guy Pipitone.
As part of the Ohio Valley Region of the SCCA Race of Champions event, the third race of the Cartech GM Challenge commenced with current points leader Franklin Futrelle leading the field to the green flag. Getting away cleanly in the mixed class race, the defending series champion and reigning SCCA National Champion quickly established a multi-car advantage over P2 and P3 starters Lawrence and Curt Harrelson.
Behind the lead trio, all eyes were on Marchand. Having missed the opening qualifying session and endured a gearbox issue in the second qualifying run, the Puerto Rico born now Michigan native was rapidly working his way forward. Marchand joined the fight for a top-five spot with a lap and steadily continued his march forward, catching Harrelson, event host Pipitone, Steve Jenks and Jeremy Grenier, who were battling for position.
Out front, it appeared Futrelle was headed for a comfortable third consecutive series win, when late in the race he suddenly slowed and then stopped with a mechanical failure. At nearly the same time, Marchand, having worked his way into third place, found a way past Lawrence for what was now the race lead. While Lawrence kept the new race leader within his sights, Marchand never relinquished the position, scoring his first win of the 2009 campaign. Pipitone completed the podium celebrations, emerging from the multi-car fight for position ahead of Jenks and Harrelson.
The six-race Cartech FM Challenge, which features a $10,000 prize fund, resumes on June 21, with Round Four taking place at Road America in Wisconsin as part of the famed SCCA Chicago Region June Sprints. Entering the event, Futrelle continues to lead the championship chase ahead of Lawrence and Marchand, who are now tied for second.