Penalty Confounds Rum bum racing
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Monterey Calif. (8 September 2012) - Fighting for the lead with less than 30 minutes remaining in the Continental Tire Sports Car Festival at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Rum Bum Racing's pre-race plans were playing out exactly as the championship-leading team had hoped. But a curious and confusing call from GRAND-AM late in the race saw the team forced to serve a drive through penalty and suffer to an 11th place finish. The team still holds a four point advantage in the provisional Team Championship standings, and will look to secure the title in the final round at Lime Rock Park.

Longhi opened the race from sixth on the grid and despite some early aggressive moves from the competition, moved up to fourth before turning the car over to Plumb.

"The championship is our number one focus so I had to be extremely careful," said Longhi. "There was a lot of pushing and shoving going on. I felt as though the car at the start was very strong. I thought we could lead and we could win but as it is right now, you get behind a Camaro and it's game over here because even though you can run a similar lap time or maybe a couple Tenths quicker, when you get behind a car with a big V8 engine on the straight, they are gone and there's nothing you can do about it. So it's very frustrating. This track is very, very hard to pass on and it's just the way it is, so I was quite careful."

That careful running saw Plumb return to the fray still in the top-10 after some quick pit work from the Rum Bum Racing crew. The early stop meant that there was one more stop yet to be made to make sure that the Porsche would go the distance on fuel. With that final stop out of the way on lap 38, Plumb once again made a charge to the front after rejoining in 34th, moving all the way to second place by lap 55.

It was a storybook battle in the closing stages as the two Porsches, which each lead the team and driver championships respectively, also did battle for the victory. On one of the 11 restarts in the caution-addled race, Plumb followed the leader to the green flag.

But on another yellow flag soon after, the GRAND-AM officials came on the radio to announce that they had ruled that not only had the leading car jumped the green flag on the restart, but also too that Plumb had moved ahead of the pace car. Both leading cars were given a stop and go penalty with just six minutes remaining in the race as Rum Bum relinquished a sure podium and possible win with the penalty.

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