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Thunderhill Season Opener Weather Made it Challenging


Willows, CA – The United States Touring Car Championship (USTCC) West season opener at Thunderhill Raceway was a huge challenge for teams as the rain kept teams guessing. Winning the Touring Car class was Sean Milburn’s Milburn Motorsports BMW M3. The Super Touring winner was Rob Harper’s Forgeline/AP Racing BMW 335i. Pete Bovenberg won the Sportsman class in the Rota wheels Honda Civic.

The Touring Car class has received a lot of attention this year with a full list of competitors trying to win. Qualifying was in the wet and it was a nail biter with Gary Trudeau’s Gary’s Air Bag Service Hyundai Genesis grabbing pole position for most of the session. At the last possible second, Andy Chittum, driving the Wheels Hyundai Genesis pulled out a fantastic lap and took pole away from Trudeau.

All of the work that the teams did to come up with a great wet setup was thrown out the window when the sun came out just in time for the race. At the start, Sean Milburn jumped ahead and never looked back while getting chased by the Konig Wheels Honda Civic Type R of the Gordon Pun/Reza Arsham team. Behind them a great battle between Chittum, Trudeau and Ali Arsham, who was driving the Konig Wheels Hyundai Genesis, ensued. Trudeau had mechanical issues and ended up finishing seventh. Andy Chittum went on to finish third.

Qualifying in the Sportsman class was also full of action as Daniel Milburn put the Milburn Motorsports Acura on pole position. Pete Bovenberg grabbed the second starting position in the Rota Wheels Honda Civic and Michael McColligan’s Idemitsu Mazda RX8 took the third spot. In the race, Bovenberg took the early lead over Milburn and held on to the win. Milburn finished second and McColligan beat out everyone else and finished third.

The Super Touring class was won by Rob Harper’s BMW who was chased by Kaleb Yager’s Nissan 350Z who finished second.

The teams get a small break as they next head out to Sonoma Raceway for a big challenge on the newly paved surface.

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