RJ Racing Takes Win in Largest Class of 25 Hours
DECEMBER 4, 2011: The ninth annual United States Air Force (USAF) National Auto Sport Association (NASA) 25 Hours of Thunderhill has come and gone. Standing atop the largest class in the race, and most competitive, is Southern California-based RJ Racing (RJR). Out of 86 total entries, RJR finished first in class and 15th overall, with 630 total laps around the three-mile track. "It was an interesting race," said John Gibson, team co-owner/driver. "The field seemed to thin out at night but we kept going strong on track and in the pits. My co-owner Rob [Gibson] made great strategy calls all day."
RJ Racing started fourth in class with a solid qualifying lap. The green flag dropped on a beautiful, sunny afternoon and RJR began executing its strategy of running a clean race, avoiding incidents and relying on its efficient pit stops. "The car ran flawlessly, the first ingredient in any win," said Rob Gibson, team co-owner/driver. "The crew was outstanding, tirelessly servicing the car. And the drivers were second to none, keeping us on track and out of the paddock. John [Gibson] and I couldn't be more proud of this win."
RJ Racing took the lead at the 6-hour mark and never looked back, building a solid lead of up to nine laps throughout the night, with fast and solid driving stints by drivers Jaime Florence, Craig Evans, Johnny Kanavas, John Gibson and Rob Gibson and quick work in the pits. "The car was perfect throughout the race. RJR had the best pit stops in the E3 Class and the car simply had no problems. All the drivers drove smart and stayed out of trouble. What an incredible effort by the entire RJR team!" said Johnny Kanavas, RJR driver and Miller Motorsports Park Ford Racing High Performance Driving School instructor."
By sunrise, RJ Racing began managing the gap. Several teams attempted to take laps back to put themselves in position to make a move for the top spot, but the RJ Racing No. 23 Miata ran consistent, trouble-free laps right up until the checkered flag, finishing five laps up on the second place car. "The crew executed flawlessly," said crew chief Craig Tsurumoto. "Where most teams have a performance drop-off during the night, we improved on our pit stops to extend the lead for a comfortable final few hours."
Second in E3 was the No. 96 Mazda Miata of Team Hooverspeed 2. Third place went to the No. 3 Mazda Miata of Miatacage.com.
About RJ Racing
RJ Racing, a Southern California based team, competes in endurance and sprint auto races on purpose-built tracks across the country with its sights set on moving up through the motorsports ranks. Special thanks to Porterfield Brakes for supplying outstanding Raybestos pads which lasted the entire race with great stopping power. Stewart Development Suspension kept the car planted and contributed to the quick lap times. And thanks to Mueller Motorwerks, Mishimoto Radiators, Miller Motorsports Park, Bill Brewster Porsche, Drift Innovation, Hoosier Tire West, CDOC Race Supply, Exedy Clutch, Race Engineering and MiataPartsSource.com. This win was only possible with such great partners.
FOR INFORMATION: Chris Hillebrandt – RJRacing.net