Flat Out at Auto Club Speedway
San Ramon, CA – Round 2 of the 2021 United States Touring Car Championship took us to Southern California and Auto Club Speedway in Fontana. Auto Club Speedway may undergo some changes in the future, and this could have been the last time we were able to run this track in this configuration. Truly a spectacular track with special, unique driver challenges and being the only Super Speedway on the US West Coast. A shame should this really be the end for this iconic track.
We knew this track is a horse-power track and that we are not yet there with the tune and the additional power we had hoped to have ready for this round. Unfortunately, we had to do with what we had and see how we will stack up against the competition.
Reto Baumann reviews his Round TWO performance:
“Only my second time at this track and the first time two years ago was cut short since we blew an engine. We did fairly well on Saturday in all the Free Practice sessions and slowly started to edge forward with the challenge that T1 and T2 pose. Namely: Flat Out and no lift! I was not able to do so all Saturday long. My mind and body were screaming to slow down. Logic told me that it can be done. I needed Sat night to get myself set for the challenge on Sunday and used the two Free Practices to slowly get closer and closer to full throttle. It wasn’t until the second race lap when I was able to. And what a feeling it was! Absolutely incredible! We closed the gap to the two front runners in the infield section but lost out on the oval. We knew that this would happen. Having lost a couple of car lengths at the start, knowing the situation we were in, we were happy to be able to keep pace and just stay in contention, finishing third and on the podium. A good race overall, although we found some more small issues to take care of with the car development. These are small ones now, so we know we are getting close to having this car fully sorted!”
It was great to have the #53 car run nearly flawless, and the team is now looking ahead for next round at Sonoma Raceway the last weekend of May. And then, we should, cross fingers, have that full power set-up and tune we had hoped to have for Auto Club Speedway.
About Red Panther Motorsport (RPM)
A leading California based professional racing team. RPM competes in the Hankook Tires United States Touring Car Championship (USTCC) race series. For more information please see and visit and also like us on our social media channels.