April 11, 2016 (Las Vegas, NV) – Going into the 5th and 6th rounds of the SCCA US Majors Tour, the GRR Racing Team had put in a significant amount of effort and testing to prepare their Edelbrock powered Scion FRS. With help from suspension partner AST Suspension, Mann Engineering, and Go Go Go Racing the car was dialed and ready to hit the track. As the weekend neared, it appeared that rain was a possibility in the forecast.
The races were held at Thunderhill Raceway in Willows, CA and the weekend would start on the 3 mile track, and move to the 5 mile track for Sunday’s race. Friday’s wet qualifying session placed Michele in 3rd for the grid for Saturday’s race. With an exciting start, Abbate had made her way comfortably into 2nd place. The conditions were damp and one of the other classed cars had blown its motor, putting oil on the track. Unfortunately, Abbate hit the oil and got loose on the back side of the track. Keeping the car on track, she lost a position, but held onto the 3rd place podium finish as she took the checkered. Crew Cheif Anthony Philleo stated, “This was a great race, and I’m glad we had no issues while running hard at Thunderhill”.
Wet conditions throughout the weekend at Thunderhill. Photo by: Richard Pochop/@eyephotou
The qualifying session for the 5 mile track was held Sunday morning and the weather conditions were still undecided. “The entire front section of the track was dry, and the back section was pouring rain – it was the weirdest thing”, Michele explained. With the Hoosier H20 tires, Abbate locked in the 2nd place grid spot for the afternoon race. The weather had cleared up by the afternoon, and the team put their lightweight TC105N Weds Wheels wrapped in Hoosier slicks as the headed to grid.
With an amazing start, Michele rocketed the Scion FRS to the front of the STU pack. Leading the race into turn 1, the team knew it was going to be a good battle for the 35 minutes. “I know we have a strong car, but with 35 minutes you have to drive smart and save your tires for when they count the most”, Abbate admitted. Battling with the number 17 Honda s2000 throughout the race, it appeared Michele had the advantage on the back side of the track, and 17 had more of an edge on the front side. Pushing hard to maintain the gap, Abbate’s rear end lost grip in one of the high speed sweepers. Without enough time to catch 2nd place, she brought the car home with another 3rd place finish. “Altogether this was a great weekend; we’ve learned more as a team and we look forward to improving for the next rounds at the end of this month at Buttonwillow Raceway”, Anthony stated.
We’d like to extend our deepest thank you’s to the following people who really helped us with this weekend:
Richard Pochop – thank you for always being there for our team and for the awesome photos, even in the rain! Follow Richard on instagram @eyephotou
Racer Connect & Racecast.me – Thanks to the entire team for always providing us with what we need to broadcast our races live!
Porterfield Brakes – Thank you for your immediate help and support, the brakes on our FRS are absolutely unbeatable and we appreciate your support
Action Sports Canopies – Our pit set up is totally the best looking one out there. Thanks for keeping us looking great while supporting our branding! Please check out www.actionsportscanopies.com for all of your event needs!
Scosche – Thanks for your continued support with our program! For anyone interested in sporting their own BoomBottle or any other consumer electronics and check out www.Scosche.com and use coupon code: ABBATE30 for discounts on orders over $25!
King Bearings – Thanks for believing in us and joining our team! We look forward to what the future brings!
Driven Race Gear – Thank you for our amazing crew shirts and custom driver’s suit. Check out: www.DrivenRaceGear.com for all of your racing needs.
Heatwave Visual – We are loving our team shades we get so many compliments on our Lazerfaces! Anyone can get a discount on their own custom pair of shades at: www.heatwavevisual.com with the ABBATE30 code!
And of course, all of our other amazing partners:
Edelbrock Performance, SEIBON Carbon, Delicious Tuning, Reklaw Design, MCC Motorsports, Toyota of Olympia, Mishimoto, Auto Meter, APR Performance, Weds Wheels, Advanced Clutch Technology, Fuel Safe, Driven Race Gear, Amsoil from Sin City Amsoil, Counterspace Garage, Whiteline Suspension, ACE Header, DBA USA, Takata, Sin City DIY, and Adidas Motorsport.
Catch the livestream replay at: http://RaceCast.me/replays
Next race: April 29- May 1st at Buttonwillow RacewayMichele Abbate and her GRR Racing Scion FRS. Photo by: Richard Pochop/@eyephotou