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Phoenixville, Pa., April 28, 2012 – Subaru Road Racing Team (SRRT) teammates Andrew Aquilante and Bret Spaude qualified for a front row start, and achieved a third place finish Saturday at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The two-and a half-hour sprint race served as the third round of the 2012 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Championship.
Spaude, of Bushnell, Fla., qualified the #35 SRRT WRX STI on the front row for the race, comprising of a massive 67-car starting grid encompassing two car classes, and kept the WRX STI in the lead for 19 laps around the 2.3-mile combination NASCAR-style banked oval, and flat infield road course located just south of Miami, Fla.
While running in a comfortable 10th place on lap 30 of 82, Spaude handed driving duties over to teammate Andrew Aquilante of Chester Springs, Pa., who brought the distinctive #35 WRX STI to the checkered flag in third-place after making numerous exciting on-track maneuvers.
"The varying weather conditions throughout the race posed a challenge, but our car performed flawlessly all weekend; plus our pit stop strategy proved to be the right one, said SRRT owner Joe Aquilante, principal of Phoenix Performance in Phoenixville, Pa., where the SRRT Subaru is prepped and maintained. "We can't wait for the next round which is at our home racetrack in Millville [New Jersey]."
Added team driver Bret Spaude, "I enjoyed a great first stint and didn't feel much of any pressure [from the competitors] from behind in the wet [conditions]. Our WRX STI really stuck well in the corners, and I was able to keep the lead right up to my first pit stop." After handing off the car to his teammate, "AJ [Aquilante] picked up right where I left off and made some incredible passes to help us get onto the podium."
Aquilante and Spaude were among 67 cars entered in two classes in GRAND-AM Road Racing’s largest participatory series.
"We're pleased to take away a podium finish from the Homestead round, our team has been working hard in tapping the performance potential of our Subaru WRX STI," remarked James Han, motorsports marketing manager for Subaru of America, Inc. "Both Bret and Andrew put in some great drives under difficult and varied weather conditions while maneuvering through heavy traffic. We'll build on this result for our next race in two weeks."
The race-prepped #35 SRRT 4-door WRX STI is developed to compete against rival teams fielding cars producing over 400 horsepower.
The next race, the B+ Heroes 200, will be May 11-13 at New Jersey Motorsports Park, in Millville, NJ, nearby to both the team’s race shop location, and corporate headquarters for Subaru of America, Inc.
The Homestead round was taped and is scheduled for broadcast on SPEED TV on May 12 at noon ET.
Sponsors for SRRT include Subaru Of America, Inc., Subaru Tecnica International (STI), Subaru Performance Tuning (SPT), Hawk Brakes, Ron Davis Racing Radiators, Automotive Racing products, VAC Motorsports, Rockland Standard Gear, Ecutek, Lista, Rotary Lifts, Cusco, Carbonetic, Hella, and Perrin.
SRRT Phoenix LLC represents the Subaru of America Inc. road racing effort in the 10-round GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge series and is owned and managed by Joe Aquilante of Phoenix Performance, LLC. The team's 32,000 sq. ft. facility is in Phoenixville, Pa., 40 miles west of Philadelphia, Pa. Team drivers Andrew Aquilante and Bret Spaude race a Subaru WRX STI in the Grand Sport class.
For more information about the team and the cars, call Joe Aquilante at 610-482-0141. Fans can visit the team's website at www.srrtphoenix.com and the Phoenix Performance website at www.phoenixperformance.net
"Subaru", "WRX STI", all model names, and the Subaru logo are registered trademarks of the Subaru subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries, Ltd, Japan.
Other trademarks and trade names are those of their respective owners.