Tony Ave Racing and Ave Motorsports Shooting to Celebrate Independence Day with Trans Am Victories in Minnesota
July 2, 2015
Full Stable of Tony Ave Racing and Ave Motorsports Competitors Set for Ryans Companies Independence Day Classic at Brainerd International Raceway
BRAINERD, Minnesota (July 2, 2015) - Tony Ave Racing and Ave Motorsports will be looking to celebrate the Fourth of July holiday with some victory lane fireworks in the Ryans Companies Independence Day Classic at Brainerd International Raceway, July 4 - 5, which is Round 6 of the 2015 Trans Am Championship.
Anchoring the Tony Ave Racing (TAR) stable of five entries are top TA-class competitors, Paul Fix in the No. 4 Classic Tube/StopFlex/Car Coach/Royal Purple Corvette, and Doug Peterson, in the No. 87 3Dimensional.com Corvette.
Fix won at Lime Rock Park on Memorial Day and has finished in the top three in all five TA race run to date in 2015. He will also be racing for his fourth-straight 2015 TA pole at Brainerd.
Peterson, the two-time and reigning Trans Am champion, is looking for his first victory of 2015 but he has put together three podium finishes in the span of the year's first five races.
Most recently, Fix and Peterson finished second and third, respectively, one race ago in the "Weekend of Thunder" presented by MPT Industries at New Jersey Motorsports Park (NJMP).
"Brainerd is a medium speed track these days, but it does promote great racing," Tony Ave said. "Paul has a style that is pretty easy on the brakes, which should definitely help him. Of course, we're very focused on closing the points gap, and winning is the best way to do that!"
Fix comes to Brainerd second in the TA-class championship standings, just 11 points out of first place.
A first 2015 victory for Peterson this weekend would also be his third-in-row at Brainerd.
"I feel like Doug, who won there the last two years, can win a third in a row if we hit a good long run set up," Ave said. "Brainerd can be a little tough on tires.
In addition to the pair of TA-class contenders, TAR also fields three entries in the TA2 class.
The father-and-son team of Joe Napoleon and his son, Justin Napoleon, race identical No. 90 and No. 91 Turnkey Industries and CommState Bank Camaros this season, their first fulltime campaigns in Trans Am.
Justin Napoleon is coming off of his second top-10 result of the year in the No. 90 at NJMP. He hopes to join his father, who races the No. 91 entry, for a competitive and trouble-free weekend at Brainerd.
"I know Joe and Justin are champing at the bit to turn their luck around before the long 6 week break after this event," Ave said. "So, I look for big things to happen with them."
The third TAR TA2 car is driven by Tony Ave himself, the No. 70 Lamers Motor Racing/Highpoint Farms Mustang, which he drove to victory at Lime Rock.
"I love racing at Brainerd and can't wait for the race to start," Ave said. "To be honest, I have spent more time focusing on the TA cars going into Brainerd, so I will be working on my car over the test day to come up with a good set up for it. We will just have to see how that goes, but I'm definitely looking forward to it."
In addition to the TAR "house cars," several TA-class competitors that run Ave Motorsports-built AR-1 chassis will be in action at Brainerd.
Competitors racing AR-1 chassis include Jim McAleese (No. 03 McAleese & Associates/Jetco Engineering Corvette), Claudio Burtin (No. 7 Foametix Corvette), Cliff Ebben (No. 36 Stumpf Ford/McMahon Group Ford Mustang) and David Pintaric (No. 57 Kryderacing Corvette).
Any positive results this weekend at Brainerd will add to a strong record of career success for Ave and his racing operations at the Minnesota track.
"I won my first SCCA National at Brainerd way back in 1990 and I have always run well there," Ave said. "I actually tied Mark Donohue's Trans Am record of four consecutive wins at a given race track with a dominant run at Brainerd over several years. I was even leading my fifth consecutive event when I cut a tire."
After an unofficial test day, Friday, July 3rd, Trans Am sessions start Saturday, July 4th, with practice before TA-class "Fast Five" qualifying at 2:20 p.m. CDT and TA2 "Fast Five" qualifying at 2:45 p.m. CDT. Race-day, Sunday, July 5th, includes final practice and last-chance qualifying that morning. For the first time in several races, all classes will compete together later on Sunday in the featured Ryan Companies Independence Day Classic, which goes green at 1:50 p.m. CDT for 100 miles/40 laps.
Follow Ave Motorsports on Twitter at @AveMotorsports and on Facebook at Facebook.com/AveMotorsports . You can also follow the action throughout the weekend at www.GoTransAm.com, on Facebook at Facebook.com/GoTransAm and on Twitter at @GoTransAm. Live timing and scoring is available online at GoTransAm.com/live-timing and on the Race Monitor app.