Disappointment at Trans Am NOLA SpeedTour for Ruman
March 16, 2023
Munroe Falls, Ohio – It was a hot and humid weekend for Round 2 of the Trans Am Championship Presented by Pirelli at NOLA Motorsports Park in Avondale, LA, this past weekend.
Ruman drove to victory at NOLA in 2015 but struggled a bit to find grip and good times during the sessions leading up to the race, ultimately qualifying her No. 23 McNichols Co. Corvette in P7 for Sunday’s TA/GT race. The team made some adjustments for the race day setup which paid off at the start of the race. Ruman jumped immediately into fourth position and settled into third after Justin Marks locked up his brakes and slid off the track heading into the esses. Unfortunately, on the first turn of the first lap, Ruman had power steering issues. She battled the power steering issue going in and out for the length of the race.
Ruman, Pintaric, and Drissi, running third, fourth, and fifth, were in a heated battle for the first 20 laps. Ruman yielded to Pintaric on lap 6, giving up the spot as she struggled with no power steering in the tight sections of the track. Ruman passed Pintaric back several laps later with Drissi in toe. On lap 20, the pair came upon a slower XGT car, Ruman ducked underneath and made the pass, but Drissi came in way too hot and made contact with the XGT car and then slammed into the rear end of Ruman spinning her out. Ruman was able to continue but lost a ton of ground. There were no cautions during the 37-lap race to help her catch up, but she drove back to take the checkered in sixth position. Drissi was assessed a 40 second “drive through” post-race penalty for avoidable contact though it did not affect his in-class finishing position of seventh place.
“What can I say, I’m just gutted. The guys gave me a fantastic car and I was running really well despite my power steering issue. If I could’ve turned the car in the tight sections of the track, I know I would have been able to stay up front. It’s really a shame to get taken out after we ran nose to tail lap after lap. Looks like Tomy (Drissi) misjudged the traffic but it cost us a great finish. He did apologize to me after the race…but I think I might have to repaint the back of my car to a different color though for the future, I just always seem to be a bullseye,” Ruman emphasized.
Teams will have another quick turn around and head to Road Atlanta, GA, March 22nd-26th. Heading into Round 3, Matthew Brabham leads the TA National class championship with 208 points, followed by Justin Marks in second – 177, Chris Dyson in third – 175, Ken Thwaits is fourth – 173, and Tomy Drissi sits in fifth – with 160 points.
The broadcast of this past weekend's events at NOLA Motorsports Park will be broadcast on Thursday, March 16th on MAVTV:
8:00 pm EDT: Big Machine Vodka SPIKED Coolers TA2® Series Race
9:00 pm EDT: TA/XGT/SGT/GT Race
10:00 pm EDT: Showtime Motorsports docuseries, Road to Glory