American V8 Road Racing Finishes 4th at Daytona and Wins Southern Cup in TA
December 5, 2018
TEAM RELEASE - COMMERCE, GA – December 4, 2018 - American V8 Road Racing team owner and driver Jeff Hinkle, competing in the ground pounding TA class at Daytona, finished 4th which tied a career best finish at Detroit in 2017.
We had a great car with our Dodge / SRT Challenger this weekend that was very settled and very reliable. We went conservative on our setup which wasn’t quite as fast as some of the early leaders but with a few cautions it allowed us to stay within striking distance of a podium finish. The key was that our car finished the race and at Daytona this is an accomplishment and a must for driver safety.
It was an exciting race which we traded places with Simon Gregg and Natalie Decker a few times – once with an off at the bus stop where we narrowly avoided a serious issue after some minor contact with a TA car at the entrance. It was wild and pretty exciting according to Hinkle. All of the extra traffic from the combined classes made for some difficult racing but the large track format at Daytona alleviated most of the potential disasters with plenty of room for passing.
With our new car that we received late in 2017 we struggled early this season with setup and getting the car dialed in but finally felt like it was all working well and fast for our driver at VIR where we finished a strong 6th.
Looking ahead to 2019 we are excited to return with our current platform that is fully developed and focus on putting it on the podium finally now that we are focused on incremental improvements with a fully sorted car. The only updates we are working on this winter is adding a new sequential gearbox that we have developed to our TA car from Racetech Services and Gforce that we are excited to use. It’s going to replace the Gforce GSR we have become used to. It’s been an incredibly reliable gear box and since the new one is based on the GSR internals and has an incredible 1800hp rating we are ecstatic to get it on the track. Having a sorted car that is no longer being developed takes a lot of load off of driver and crew – as there are fewer mishaps and rework and all of the effort can be spent on fine tuning at each track vs trying to tame a beast according to Hinkle.
We are incredibly excited after winning the southern Cup this year in its inaugural year coming off of winning rookie of the year in 2017 to return in 2019 and turn our focus to an overall podium finish and hopefully a win. That will be an incredible accomplishment for driver and team since the field in Trans Am is world class and nothing is simply given. It’s been an incredible series to be a part of and we can’t think of anywhere else we would rather be racing at this point. The staff and competitors have been nothing short of incredible and very helpful for driver development and overall enjoyment.