Press release - For immediate distribution
MIXED RESULTS FOR SAMANTHA TAN AT ROAD AMERICA
ELKHART LAKE (WI), June 24, 2016 – Rounds 7 and 8 of the Pirelli World Challenge (PWC) race were held at Road America, in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, USA. Road America is a 6.52 kilometer track with 14 turns. This track can be very demanding on the brakes as there are three long straightaways. Samantha Tan has had some experience at this track, as she raced here once last season. This year, she is back with her new car, the STR/GPI #38 Honda Civic Si.
Thursday morning's weather started off with a temperature of 14 degrees Celsius and rain. She handled the conditions well with wet tires, then eventually changed to slicks once the track started to dry up. Even though a red flag interrupted the practice, her best time for the official practice session was 2:44:307, the 8thbest time in the TCA-Class.
During the qualifying session for Race 1, the red flag was once again waving. Interrupting the session. Samantha clocked a time of 2:41.072 for the qualifying session, putting her in 7thplace on the starting grid. Tan had a very good rolling start quickly moving up two positions, but a few driving errors while battling for position saw her fall back to 7th place at the finish in a field dominated by Mazda Miatas, one of which she came in contact with. "There was a lot of bumping and contact during the race. That unsettled me a bit initially, but I was able to get my concentration back and move back up through the field. I just ran out of time and had to settle for 7th place." Luckily the damages were minor and the car was in good running shape for the second race.
Race 2 began on Friday evening with Tan in 9thplace on the grid for the standing start. She again had a good start, moving up two positions, but her car started to overheat near the halfway mark and the engine lost power, limiting her progress. "I was feeling much better during the second race and looking forward to a better finish. Unfortunately, the engine started to overheat, which actually reduced the amount of power." Towards the end of the race, Tan was moving through the field of less powerful TCB cars, when she encountered a slower TC car. While trying to overtake the slower TC Miata, the driver did not see her and forced her off the track. Undeterred, she still managed to cross the finish line in 7th place.
"This track is really demanding as it is tough on brakes and you have to get the lines just right to pass someone. I was pushed off the track because this TC car was so close to me and I had to let him go to avoid making contact in Canada Corner. My race might have finished right there. I really did not want that kind of result, Samantha said following the second race." The team will have plenty of time to make sure the car is ready for her next race weekend and fix up some scuffs from this race, as well as address the overheating issue.
Rounds 9 and 10 will take place on August 12-14 at Utah Motorsports Campus, in Tooele, Utah. TC-TCA-TCB races from the Road America weekend will be aired on CBS Sports Network Thursday, July 7, 2016 at 08:00PM ET
Samantha's race fans can follow her on samanthatanracing.com, Instagram (@samanthatan_racing), Facebook (STRSamantha) and on Twitter (@STR_Samantha).
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