Fontana, CA, Mar. 14/ C&R Promotions / -- Jeff Lepper, in the IPP, RevItUpMotorsports.net, Collision Craft Dodge SRT-4 led a Lepper family one-two finish in the opening round of the NASA sanctioned Hankook Tire United States Touring Car Championship at California Speedway. Tom Lepper, driving the Special Projects Motorsports, Redline Oil sponsored Acura Integra made an outside pass on the second to last lap to round out the Lepper one-two. Brian Lock finished third in his SubyDude.com, Santa Cruz Subaru, DMS North America, Subaru WRX.
A USTCC record field of 22 cars showed up at California Speedway and the deep field produced an amazing diversity of cars to start the race. At the standing start, Jeff Lepper, made a stunning move and used the power of his Dodge to go from 11th to take the lead by the third corner! "I used my years of drag racing experience to get an incredible start," said an elated Jeff Lepper after the race. "I was able to use the power of the SRT-4 on the banking to keep everyone behind me, then I had to hold them all off in the tight in-field section. I would also like to thank my crew Chad, John, Curly and Phil Mulgren my co-driver and the co-owner of the SRT-4 for working on the car all day and night to get it ready for the race," continued Lepper.
Jonathon Meris in the Motorsport Dynamics Honda Civic Sedan started 5th and advanced to 2nd for more than half the race before mechanical problems ruined his day. This left Jeff Lepper out front, and Lock in second with a charging Tom Lepper, who had a poor start, closing, in third place. With a lap and a half to go Lepper made an outside move stick on Lock for second coming off the oval onto the infield. Now, with a lap to go, Tom Lepper closed on his son. The race produced the closest finish in USTCC history with Jeff Lepper holding off his father by a mere 14/100th of a second margin of victory. Lock finished third in his Subaru, while Dave Brown in the Spoon Sports/OPAK Racing Acura RSX, and Justin Elin in the P1 Motorsports, T1R, INTEC Racing Honda Civic filled out the top five.!
Niki Tam driving the Acutech Racing Acura Integra was awarded the APEX-I Integration Rookie of the Race award for finishing in 11th place. Drew Gillis, in the Ford Focus won the Hawk Brake Pads Hard Charger of the Race Award for climbing eight spots, finishing 12th after a 20th place starting position.
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Public Relations Director, USTCC