RRT Racing completed the four hour race that concluded the 2009 Koni Sports Car Challenge series. The RRT Racing 328i ran a competitive race and finished 9th in the ST class against a large field.
The last race of the season for the Koni Challenge was held at RRT Racing’s home track, Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Virginia. It had been a couple months since the last race for RRT at Mid- Ohio, but the months were not without progress. “We were focused on ensuring we would meet our goal of a top ten finish our rookie year, so that meant more development of the car in our downtime,” noted driver and team principal Michael Dayton. The car would arrive at the VIR event with more horsepower courtesy of the Grand-Am Spec ECU, some weight-loss, and improved handling.
The weekend saw the team in the top ranks of the ST class during practices, proving that the additional development and home-track advantage was paying off. Near the end of practice #1 Dayton had an incident with the tire wall at the famed Oak Tree turn which jeopardized the qualifying session only a few hours later. James Muskopf, Bruce Norton and the rest of the crew made quick work of the damages and the #21 was back out for the end of the practice #2. Barry Battle then qualified the #21 BMW 328i in 8th position, the highest starting position for the team this year.
Being that the race broke from the normal two-and-a-half hour format, the team shuffled the race strategy and in the first half of the race it paid off. Battle grabbed the class lead around the one-and-a-half hour mark. He led for 7 laps before taking to pit road for fuel, tires and driver change. Dayton took the wheel and re-entered the race in 11th position. Over his 70 minute stint, Dayton would move the RRT Racing #21 up to 4th position. The next pit stop put Battle back in the car for the final stint. A few unlucky issues on pit road and a caution two laps after the final pit stop relegated the #21 to 7th position and a lap down. A late caution with 2 laps remaining created a wild restart and a melee in turn one shuffled the RRT Racing #21 back to 9th were it would finish the race. Battle pointed out, “We knew we had a quick car and turning the 4th fastest lap of the race, the fastest of any BMW, proved the RRT Racing #21 was capable of running up front.”
In the off-season, RRT Racing will continue developing the BMW E90 328i to ensure a solid run at the 2010 championship.
RRT is the leading BMW Performance and Service center in the Washington, DC Metropolitan area. Founded in 2002, RRT offers a full-range of BMW repairs, maintenance, and performance services completed by highly experienced technicians at reasonable prices. RRT also offers state-of-the-art suspension services and development, including an on-line suspension catalog. RRT Racing 2009 partners include Tischer BMW’s GetBMWParts.com, OG Racing, DiffsOnline.com, Vorshlag Motorsports, the Children’s Inn at NIH, Motul Oils, e90Fanatics.com, Schroth Safety Equipment, and BrakeSwap.com.