Race wins, regular podiums and a championship..
San Ramon, CA – A race season always has its up and downs, like riding a roller coaster. 2019 wasn’t any different for RPM and its drivers Rob Harper and Reto Baumann.
Reto Baumann - #53 VW Jetta 2.0 GLI (USTCC Super Touring, NASA Super Touring 2)
What a start to the 2019 USTCC campaign it was for Reto. He botched the start and had to claw back all the way to the top spot at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Reto held the USTCC Super Touring Championship lead for several rounds, until the mechanical ‘gremlins’ put an end to his championship challenge. Reto end the 2019 USTCC season as 2nd runner up.
The campaign to defend the 2018 NASA NorCal championship title didn’t start off well with the aforementioned mechanical ‘gremlins’ impacting the early results. Regardless, Reto came away with a maximum points effort in April (Thunderhill) and the double points round in October (Sonoma) cementing his 1st runner up and podium finish for a second year in a row.
The USAF 25hrs of Thunderhill is one of the longest and most grueling endurance races in North America. Especially in 2019, where rain was torrential and keeping the car on the track was a huge challenge. Reto drove a Ford Mustang for DIG Motorsports. With his co-drivers, he ended the race with a 1st runner up and an admirable podium finish in the E0 class.
Rob Harper - #28 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 (USTCC Grand Touring, NASA Super Touring 1)
The USTCC Grand Touring class was heavily contested. Rob Harper started off his title defending season with some transmission issues at the season opener, nursing the car home to a second place. At the next round the Corvette’s oil pump gave up and Rob had to subcomb 1st place to get the car across the finish line ahead of the field in 2nd position. This was the beginning of some persistent mechanical challenges that needed sorting out, which the team eventually ironed out. At Thunderhill Rob was fastest off the line and started to pull away on the first lap, only to break down with a transmission failure. Rob always knew he could be competitive and beat out his quickest rivals. And so, he did it with an incredible race at Sonoma (Round 6, September), where the two leading GT cars where within striking distance of each other for the whole race. Rob lead the entire race from start to finish, delivering a flawless effort to bring home a huge win! That win cemented Rob’s 1st runner up finish of the USTCC season.
Rob backed up his strong showings in USTCC by clinching the NASA NorCal ST1 Championship.
About Red Panther Motorsport (RPM)
RPM competes in the Hankook Tires United States Touring Car Championship (USTCC) campaigning a VW Jetta 2.0 GLI (Both, in NASA NorCal and USTCC) and Rob Harper’s Corvette Z06 (USTCC) as a client car. Please see www.RedPantherMotorsport.com for more information and visit / like us on our social media channels.