For Immediate release: BFGoodrich Saturn Storms to Super Tour T3 win at VIR
ALTON, Va. (April 17, 2011) – Nearly 250 of SCCA Club Racing’s best drivers took to the technical ribbon of asphalt at scenic Virginia International Raceway for Sunday’s BFGoodrich Tires SCCA Super Tour Round Three event, part of the North Carolina Region Oak Tree Double National. The Group 2 contest featured a 40-car field made up of SCCA’s Touring 2 and 3 classes along with the “swarm” called Spec Miata. On a cloudless Sunday afternoon, Mike Kramer pushed his BFGoodrich/Carbotech Brakes wrapped Saturn ION Red Line to the Touring 3 (T3) class victory over a stellar field of competitors including; the Nissan of Rob Hines, the Honda’s of Chris Puskar and Jeremy Lucas and John Heinricy’s Chevrolet Cobalt. The victory netted BFGOODRICH a big win in its own Super Tour Victory Circle and Kramer his second SCCA National win of the 2011 season.
Kramer almost made it back-to-back wins, but finished second in Saturday’s primer race to Bill Steinhoff’s Nissan 350Z. Kramer, Heinricy, Steinhoff and Puskar had a spirited battle with Kramer taking the early lead of the 14-lap sprint. First Heinricy, then Steinhoff managed a turn-one pass under hard braking to wrestle the lead from Kramer. Kramer got back by Heinricy on the same lap and spent the rest of the contest chasing Steinhoff. At the stripe Kramer flashed under the checkered flag less than 3 seconds behind the Nissan. He was followed by Puskar, Hines, Lucas, then Heinricy. For Steinhoff, Saturday’s win came at a price, as he damaged his rear differential beyond repair and was unable to start Sunday’s BFGoodrich Super Tour event.
“I am absolutely thrilled with the car’s performance today,” explained Kramer. “I was really hard on those BFGOODRICH skins trying to get past Bill, and they stayed stout to the end…and those Carbotech Brakes were absolutely awesome,” smiled Kramer. “We’ve worked really hard to get the Saturn to this point, and it has taken a team of partners, family and friends to make it a better piece; BFGoodrich Tires, Carbotech Brakes, Jerry Onks at VetteSport; Red Line Oil; Jeff Myers; Tim Myers; Tim Hund, Joe Leonard and Kolin Aspergen and finally my family Ralph and Carol Kramer, Amber, Alex, Joey and Jack. “
For Sunday’s event, Kramer qualified on the outside pole behind John Heinricy’s Chevy Cobalt with a speed of just over 87 miles per hour. Hines, Puskar and Lucas qualified 3rd, 4th and 5th respectively.
At the green, Kramer took advantage of an inside opening and throttled past Heinricy entering the first corner. Though pressed from behind by Hines and Puskar, he would not relinquish the lead. Kramer’s BFGOODRICH Red Line took the checkered flag almost 2 seconds in front of Hines’ Nissan. Hines was followed by Puskar, Lucas then Heinricy.
“Any time you can win a race with the caliber of competition we had here this weekend, you are having a great day,” beamed Kramer. “This was a strong field of cars and drivers, and this is a really big win for us and our partners for sure! I absolutely tortured my BFGoodrich R1’s all day and man are they tough…and fast! The guys at Carbotech told me to “go deep” with their brake pads…deep indeed! There are a couple of turns here where I was "over-the-fence deep" – good, stout stuff! My heartfelt thanks to all of our partners and friends, especially Doug, Peter, Paul, Tony, Gary, and Bob from BFGoodrich; Mike, Danny and Chris from Carbotech Brakes; and Jerry and Debbie from VetteSport.
The #19 Saturn ION Red Line was built at GM's Spring Hill Manufacturing assembly plant in Spring Hill, TN and is supported by: BFGoodrich Tires, Carbotech Brakes, VetteSport, Red Line Oil and TN Host.
SCCA's Touring 3 class is the racing battleground for America's most popular new performance cars including; Nissan’s 350Z, Mazda’s RX-8 and Mazdaspeed 3 and Miata, BMW’s Z4, Subaru’s Legacy, Audi’s TT, Honda's S2000, Chrysler Cross Fire, Chevrolet's Cobalt SS Supercharged and Saturn's ION Red Line.
Mike Kramer is a five-time SCCA Southeast Divisional Champion with 48 SCCA National victories. Each of those 48 wins was earned in a Saturn racecar. In 2003, he piloted a 1997 Saturn SC2 to the Showroom Stock C, SCCA National Championship – a first time achievement for him and the first for a GM front-drive car in SCCA's 40-year history.
The BFGoodrich/Carbotech Red Line heads to Road Atlanta in Braselton, GA for the SCCA National on May 21 and 22, 2011. For more information visit: www.saturnracer.com or www.scca.com for BFGoodrich Super Tour news. Check us out on Facebook at: SaturnRacer on Facebook.
Check out the video of a Supercharged Start - Start – VIR 2011