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Arsham wins United States Touring Car Championship Sportsman season opener at Buttonwillow Raceway

Arsham wins United States Touring Car Championship Sportsman season opener at Buttonwillow Raceway

Buttonwillow, CA - The season opener for the 2020 USTCC season was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but the racing picked up where the 2019 season left off. After running as high as second place, at what ended up being the final full race of the season at Round 6, but ultimately retiring due to electrical problems, Racing Team’s newest prospect, Reza Arsham, was determined to make up for the lost opportunity by starting the 2020 season on a high note. Continued problems with the #32 Wheels Honda Civic meant that Reza had to look elsewhere for a car for the season opener. Luckily, the #35 BMW M3 was available for Arsham.

Having only raced in 5 races and finishing 4th in Sportsman and runner up in the Rookie of the Year championship in 2019, Arsham had never raced at Buttonwillow Raceway. Coming off of a very successful USTCC Virtual 2020 season that saw Arsham claim one win and second overall, meant that Arsham was ready to go from the first session on Saturday. The countless hours on the simulator paid off as Arsham topped the timing sheets after morning warm-up on Saturday. In every session, Arsham continued to find more pace in the car and shaved six seconds from Saturday to qualifying on Sunday. However, after protests from other competitors, a dynamometer test found the #35 BMW M3 to be out of compliance. This resulted in Arsham’s qualifying lap being thrown out and meant Arsham would have to start from the back of the grid.

The signature USTCC standing start always provides ample action and 2020 is no exception. With a rocket of a start, Arsham went from last to first all before the first corner. Fierce competitor Pete Bovenberg’s #2 MBO Motorsports Honda Civic was able to fight back and take the lead, but he had intermittent throttle problems. Arsham regained the lead on lap one and never looked back. On Arsham’s way to a historic victory, he set the lap record for the Sportsman class at Buttonwillow Raceway and became the youngest ever USTCC race winner. Now Arsham is looking to carry the momentum into the next event at Thunderhill Raceway in early August. Racing Team is a professional racing team that has been winning races since 1994 and has grown from one car to seven cars. The team has won dozens of championships since then in different classes and different cars. The team most recently won the driver’s championship in the United States Touring Car Championship in 2019 and placed second in the Team Championship.The team does more than just win races though. The team has built some awesome project cars, including ones for the SEMA show for major manufacturers including General Motors, Hyundai, Honda, Toyota and Kia.

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