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In an exciting opening round for our new Xplore Touring Car Championship, Glenn Briden was able to take advantage of a technical problem for Renegade Autosport's Spike Spiegel and the competition caution to take home the first win of the series. Early on Spiegel, who started on pole thanks to the random grid, led the first half of the race before computer troubles brought his race nearly to a halt. Having had multiple episodes, Briden was able to take the lead during the first glitch and hold on through the end of the race, despite the hard charge from Spiegel's team mate, Daniel Hunter.
Last night's races featured 4 different makes on the grid and showed how closely matched they all are, and where their strengths on the track would likely be throughout the season. Lucky for Briden the handling of the rear wheel drive Infinit Q50 driven by Hunter started to go away in the closing laps, allowing for Briden to take his Hyundai i30 to victory lane, securing 50 points, a bonus point, and the championship lead.
When asked about his glitches that led to his 4th place finish following the early dominance in his Ford Focus, Spiegel simply said:
"Look, I'm out here racing on 12 year old tech and I am probably pushing it too hard with some settings. That is my fault. I made some adjustments for race 2 and we will see where that leads. Congrats to Glenn though, because after coming off of the Porsche Cups, these front wheel drive cars are not that simple to jump into and he hung around early then locked things down in the second half."
Also in the race was Tim Hunter, driving a BMW 330i. A stall at the start set him back early on and then handling kept him away from any contention in the event. He is likely to change cars before the next event. There were two races at Laguna Seca and we will report on the second soon.