RTR Acura Drivers Both Win at VIR Double, Cunningham Clinches GTS WC Title
Rounds 10 and 11 of the World Challenge Championship took place at the demanding VIRginia International Raceway, and the RealTime Acura brigade put the icing on the cake that is the 2010 season. With Acura having already been crowned the GTS Category Manufacturers' Champions, it was a shootout between drivers Peter Cunningham and Nick Esayian for the Drivers' title.
With only one event remaining in the 12-race championship after the conclusion of the VIR weekend, Esayian knew he had to score as many points as he could to keep his title hopes alive, and as it turned out, he did just that by scoring his maiden professional race victory on Saturday.
Cunningham's Acura TSX had led Round 10 from the standing start, but was slowed due to a rare mechanical glitch on the final lap, within sight of the checkered flag. His day was still salvaged with a fourth place result.
Esayian's matching RealTime Acura was wrapped up in a race-long battle with Ernie Jakobowski's Porsche Cayman in treacherous conditions. As the rain began to gently fall about mid-way through the 21-lap contest, all the World Challenge drivers did their best to stay on the road.
In the end, Esayain crossed the line in lockstep with Jakobowski, but the Acura driver was declared the winner when the Porsche was determined to have a noncompliant ride height.
RealTime fielded a third Acura TSX this weekend for Tommy Sadler. Sadler's real life job is Crew Chief for the Flying Lizards, the highly successful American Le Mans team of Porsche 911s. The Lizards are the defending GT2 Champions and hold a significant lead in the 2010 fight with only one event remaining.
Sadler is originally from the Danville, Virginia area and he took advantage of a break in his schedule to come and play with the Acura boys. He methodically came up to speed through the test and practice days, and then qualified fifth. In his World Challenge debut, he kept his nose clean in the changing track conditions and finished an impressive third place!
When the World Challenge cars qualified on Sunday morning for Round 11, the skies were sunny and the ambient temperature was not yet boiling. Cunningham