Liam Kenney Celebrates New Jersey Victory Sterling, Virginia (September 28, 2008) -- Liam Kenney's first visit to the New Jersey Motorsports Park is one he won't forget in a hurry after celebrating his first victory in the 2008 VW Jetta TDI...
Liam Kenney Celebrates New Jersey Victory
Sterling, Virginia (September 28, 2008) -- Liam Kenney's first visit to the New Jersey Motorsports Park is one he won't forget in a hurry after celebrating his first victory in the 2008 VW Jetta TDI Cup on Sunday. The Sterling-based racer claimed his maiden victory in a rain-soaked Round 7 having picked up a podium finish the day before in the first round of the double-header meeting at the all-new 2.25-mile Millville track.
Kenney, who arrived in New Jersey with four straight top-tens, including a second place podium in Round 3, was again in the mix piloting the #35 ViON/Trax International 2009-spec, clean-diesel powered VW Jetta TDI as the 30-strong field hit the track on Saturday for Round 6 qualifying.
The 16-year-old qualified tenth and drove a measured, but effective race on Saturday afternoon, skillfully climbing through the order to capture his second podium of the year claiming third at the checkered after 19 flat-out laps. Kenney's third place translated into second place championship points with race winner, South Africa's Shane Williams, ineligible to score points based on his 'guest-driver status'. As a result, second-placed David Jurca, winner of Round 2, claimed maximum points with Liam second.
Round 7 on Sunday saw Liam make his front-row grid debut courtesy of a second place qualifying slot. The teenage racer would successfully capitalize on his form, Kenney enjoying a trouble-free run despite the wet conditions underneath. Having made his move for the lead, Liam's run to victory ultimately ended under a full-course caution, the second of the 30-minute race, with track conditions getting the better of much of the field but not Kenney -- the seventh winner in seven VW Jetta TDI races!
"It was pretty interesting being out there on slicks in the rain today but I'm really happy to have picked up my first win of the season," said a delighted Kenney. "I was pretty nervous but the car ended up being quite predictable and handled well as it always does. I have to say it was a fairly uneventful race for me, for a change, and I went into it really looking to build on yesterday's podium but make sure I emerged, if nothing else, with a decent points haul to keep my title charge going. It feels great to get the win, I've had to wait way too long this season but it came good today.
"Yesterday's race, for me at least, was just about surviving and picking up points. I went out with a pretty clear mindset and had a good run. Some people were making mistakes, I made the most of all those opportunities and before I knew it I was up in fourth place. Once I was up to third the full course caution slowed my progress a bit but I was happy with the points for second. Obviously it's been a good weekend and I really enjoyed my first visit to New Jersey Motorsports Park. I can't wait to come back here but my immediate focus is on Road Atlanta next weekend and being right up there in the championship fight!"
Round 8, the season finale of the inaugural 2008 VW Jetta TDI Cup Series, takes place next weekend at Georgia's Road Atlanta circuit, Friday 3rd October -- www.roadatlanta.com