By Ali Arsham
Napa, CA --Nitto Tires United States Touring Car Championship (USTCC) teams are getting ready for the biggest race of the season on September 6-8 at Sonoma, California. After a great series of races at Thunderhill, Miller Motorsports Park and Mazda Raceway, the teams now prepare for the twisty and challenging Sonoma Raceway as they share the weekend with the FIA World Touring Car Championship teams.
The huge field of cars in the Touring class is gearing up to win the doubleheader weekend. The favorite drivers to win are probably the same drivers that are on the top of the points. The current co-points leader, Brad McClure, has proven to be extremely tough to beat. McClure, who will be driving the BTM Motorwerkes/GoGoGear.com/UTI BMW M3, is always fast at Sonoma and has several track records there. Dave Brown is tied with McClure atop the driverís points championship and he also has shown that he knows how to go quickly at Sonoma with numerous track records of his own. Brown who will be driving the Hawk/Competition Clutch BMW M3 has been gearing up for this race for the entire year. Perhaps the most feared driver in the paddock is Tim Barber, who won the previous race at Mazda Raceway in his TNI Racing/Am Cyn Collision Center Mazdaspeed 3. Barber has been super quick lately and has gotten quicker at each race. The newcomer who could spoil the party would have to be Jason Alexandridis who is driving a BTM Motorwerkes BMW M3. Alexandridis has considerable experience in NASAís Spec E30 class and with a car that is prepared by BTM Motorwerkes will be a force to be reckoned with.
The new GT class is having its best turnout ever and leading the pack is Geoff Sykes in the European Motor Works BMW M3. Another super quick BMW is the Performance Technic BMW M3 of Sean Yepez. One canít forget the Supertech/CT Engineering Honda S2000 of Andrie Hartanto who won the last race at Mazda Raceway. One thing we learned at the last race was that those three are extremely close to each other and the winner would be dictated by the one who made the least mistakes. Two other BMW drivers have a great shot to do well in this race. VJ Mirzayan who won this race last year in the Achilles Motorsports BMW M3 is always super quick as well as Daniel Akhromstev who has shown that he can be as fast as anyone in his PTF Motorsports BMW M3.
The teams will start arriving at Sonoma on Thursday September 5 to prepare for the unique double header. Round 4 will be on Saturday September 7 at 13:10 with round 5 on Sunday at 15:15. For tickets you can visit www.racesonoma.com As always you the races will be shown on a tape delay basis on Final Drive TV. For the latest news, follow USTCC on Twitter and like the USTCC Facebook page.