Posted (06/28/2014) -
Watkins Glen, NY (June 28, 2014) -- Once known as the mayor of Watkins Glen due to his numerous wins there, including three wins in one weekend, Randy was looking forward to returning to the track, located in the rolling hills of the Finger Lakes of New York, for Round 6 of the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge Championships. Randy qualified his Freedom Autosport No. 26 Mazda MX-5 team in 8th place and had every intention of moving forward. The Continental Tire series has two classes in the race and separates each class at the start for safety reasons, each group getting their own green flag. The GS class started first and had a big crash before the start-finish line. Randy and most of the other ST cars had time to slow down and made it through the carnage, but didn't make it very far. When no full-course caution flag was thrown, the ST cars started racing down the hill into Turn One. Randy and four other cars came together and crashed, with Randy getting damage to both the front and rear. He was able to limp to the pits and was taken to the garage for repairs. As the race was under the caution flag for 25 minutes due to the two incidents, the Freedom Autosport team was able to repair the Mazda and Randy returned to the race. Co-driver Andrew Carbonell took over the steering wheel later on, finishing in 26th position.
"I am so disappointed because I believe we had a car that could win the race. When the GS cars crashed, my spotter warned me and we slowed down and worked our way through the group with no problems. With no full-course yellow, we took off again. Heading into Turn 1 in the brake zone, still going straight, we had four wide squeeze play. A Honda to my right swung into my view and I jigged over to keep him from hitting me and moved into a BMW. A Hyundai was passing the BMW and we all ended up together. It was a sandwich and the BMW was the meat. The Hyundai magnified the impact ten-fold. It went into the air and I actually saw the underside of the car as it went by me. It was wild and all before the corner! I banged the guardrail on the side and came to rest thinking my day was over. I put it in gear and could hear and smell tires rubbing on the body but it moved. I made it back to the pits with the steering bent, leaving a skid mark all the way around. My crew was able to fix it fairly quickly and we got back on track. The car was rather unstable but, if driven carefully, could still turn competitive lap times. I had great fun racing my Freedom Autosport teammates, Mat and Mark Pombo, bump drafting to go faster. Andrew got in and our tough little Miata kept on going. Its just a shame it happened, considering the finish we could have had. The good news is that at half way through the season, we are still in the points race since none of the ST leaders have been consistent."
"Later on in the day, I was excited to do color commentary for the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama race with Greg Creamer. I enjoy being in the booth. I want to thank my personal sponsors Blackbox Guard, SafeRacer.com, Motor Trend Magazine and TPC Racing for their continuing support. Our next race will be at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park which worries me a little because it has a long straight, but we will be great in the corners. I just want a clean race where nothing goes wrong."
The Continental Tire 150 will be televised Sunday, July 6 at 10:00 AM ET on FOX Sports 1. The next IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race will be at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park on July 12, 2014.
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