By Justin Banner
Time Attack here in the US has certainly not taken off like many had hoped or even anticipated. At least up until this point, with Global Time Attack and the MotoIQ Pacific Tuner Car Championships teaming up for several rounds, Time Attack now has a new hope once again this year. Can John Naderi, Jason Dienhart, and the guys from the MPTCC save Time Attack and bring it to the forefront of Automotive Racing like it is overseas? Only time will tell and if Round 1 at Buttonwillow shows anything, it's that the future looks very bright for both parties!
|Fighting dirt, heat, and other racers, the MotoIQ Pacific Tuner Car Championship was truly a challenge this weekend!|
Let's start with the action in the MotoIQ Pacific Tuner Car Championship, the premiere series for wheel-to-wheel, true Tuner Car racing! Round 1, Race 1 started on Saturday as the drivers qualified to see who would end up on pole! The APM Racing Acura RSX driven by Richie Ho was able to qualify fourth, while Michele Abbate brought in the Gruppe-S Scion tC in third. Edik Stepanyan in the Motul/Hondata Acura Integra was able to start second while Andrie Hartanto would start the Prima Racing/TunerPlayground Acura TSX on Pole Position by nearly 2 seconds! Pole Position might not have been where anyone would have wanted to start as they were also forced to navigate a sea of Spec Miata, Honda Challenge, and other NASA classes all weekend!
|While he was running more weight than the Motul/Hondata Integra of Stepanyan, Hartanto was able to qualify nearly 2 seconds faster!|
Race 1 started off cleanly and Andrie would pull off to an early lead in the more powerful TSX. However, soaring temperatures, the weight of the car, and other classes to navigate would make keeping that lead very difficult. It also didn't help that Hartanto's tires were at the end of their lifespan, either! Hartanto did what he could to keep the tires going, but the 2011 spec Hankook slicks wouldn't be able to hold off the light weight, B20-powered Acura Integra of Stepanyan!
|The start of Round 1, Race 1 of the MotoIQ Pacific Tuner Car Championship. On Board with Richie Ho in the APM Acura RSX.|
|Despite the power advantage of his TSX, the weight and the older tires meant that Hartanto couldn't pull off a large lead on the rest of the field like he wanted to. Tire management was in full force for him in Race 1!|
|Michele Abbate in the Gruppe-S Scion tC was not only the heaviest car on the grid, but also using street tires and dealing with a broken shock! Which made her Third Place all that much more impressive!|