Matthew Brabham took Pirelli’s second Trans Am series to victory today at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, holding out against teammate Chris Dyson on the last lap to claim his first win of the season and second in just three series starts. The win was tough, with Brabham taking on top contender Kaz Grala and the always quick Dyson to take the checkered flag.
When the green flag was waved for the 100-lap race, Poulsiter and first-time insider battled Gralla in the #2 Technical Chassis/Weaver Dodge Challenger alongside Brabham in the #21 Ford Mustang. Brabham took the lead on the first lap, but Grala regrouped and moved forward before the second round could be completed. Once back in front, Grala held the lead until past the halfway mark, but the CD Racing cars from Brabham and Dyson weren’t far behind. Grala finally gave up the lead to Brabham on lap 25. The regular NASCAR driver maintained his brisk pace from second until nine laps later, when his challenger started blowing smoke. He was forced to pull off the track due to a differential problem on lap 34, ending his debut in Trans Am and issuing a full-track warning.
When racing resumed on lap 40, Brabham was still struggling with his work, with teammate Dyson’s #20 ALTWELL Ford Mustang now in second place. He parked it until a car in the sand trap took out the second double yellow of the race after two laps, leaving only one lap of the green flag race left once the cleanup was complete. During the last lap Dyson challenged Brabham to the last turn, but that wasn’t enough, and Brabham was in front when the square flag waved. Keeping cool under pressure in scorching temperatures, Brabham was also awarded the ChillOut Keep Cool Move of the Race. Brabham secured his second win in just three matches of Trans Am debuts. He made his Circuit of the Americas debut at the end of last year’s season when he replaced Chris Dyson.
David Pintaric in the #57 Kryderacing Ford Mustang is back on the track after a three-race pit stop and had an excellent race on his home circuit, running behind Dyson in the entire event and finishing third on the podium. He was followed by Ken Thwaites at No. 7 by Franklin Road’s Camaro Wear in fourth, and Tommy Dressey’s No. 8 Lucas Oil Mustang in fifth.
“These are some of the most fun cars I’ve ever driven,” Brabham said on Victory Lane. When you have a team like Chris and the boys do such a good job setting the car up, it’s just a dream for me to come here and drive. I said in Kuta [Circuit of The Americas] There is no other team I could have gotten into and I felt at home like these guys. Today the race was tough. I was pushing the whole race, and that was kind of our game plan. I told Chris, “I’ll pay the whole race, and if you want to save tires you can save tires.” I think if there weren’t those yellows at the end, Chris would probably get me. I have nothing left. I had no tires and was pushing hard the whole race. It’s a big shame for Kaz [Grala]; It was great racing with him at the start of the race and we had some fights side by side. He’s an incredible driver and I’m sure he would have been with us in the end if he hadn’t had problems. Thanks to Chris, everyone at allgram, and everyone at CD Racing for making me feel at home.”
“This was one of the best races I’ve ever been in,” Dyson said on the podium. Kaz came in this weekend and took out the Pancho Weaver again, and they were right in front. That’s great for the series. Matt did a great job all weekend, and we snorted all the way. We had a slightly different strategy. He was more aggressive on the tires. And I think that helped him at first. I was keeping a little spare, but those yellows got in the way, or else it could be really fun. We just wanted to make sure the house calls with my dad and Hamid [Masaood] It was positive, so we kept it clean but we raced to the finish because we wanted to put in a great show here.”
“Being here on the podium is a really good feeling; we can’t take this for granted,” said Pentarik emotionally. In January of this year, I contracted COVID-19 badly. I was disappointed for a good eight weeks. We went to Sebring and couldn’t finish three laps. It was a long way. By May I started to regain my strength and we struggled with the car a bit. Last week we were in the June Sprints race at Road America and we finally got it. It’s so good to be back.”
The SGT race on the podium saw father/son, with Milton Grant at No. 55 Sentry Self Storage/Springhill Suites Porsche 991.1, and son Carey Grant winning the No.6 Grant Racing Porsche GT3 Cup on the podium in third. Lee Saunders overcame a mid-race pit stop to take second place in the #44 Dodge Viper Landsearch LLC.
“I want to thank Jesus Christ, my Savior,” Grant said. “This is my first Trans Am win, so after I raced the 500 here in mid-Ohio last year, it feels really good. My wife Ruth comes to the race, she supports me all the time, but she doesn’t usually come with me to the track. It’s It’s great to have her here. Now she has to be in every race so I can win every race. I want to thank my staff for doing everything that needs to be done to get me here.”
In GT, Seth Lucas won the #29 Ave Motorsports Audi R8 in his first race of the season, followed by Jacques Reinke, making his debut in the #33 Chevrolet Camaro Performance Series.
“This has been fantastic,” Lucas said. “I would like to say a big thank you to Motul for taking care of us, everyone at Ave Motorsports for supporting us this weekend.”
Today’s race, presented by the Franklin Road Apparel, will be broadcast on CBS Sports on Sunday, July 3 at 2:00 p.m. ET, with a presentation on Monday, July 4 at 1:00 a.m. ET.
TA is back on the track next weekend, July 1-3, when the Ryan Companies introduce their Trans Am 100s at Road America.
#Brabham #beats #Dyson #Ohio #TransAm #midfield #win