The 25 Hours of Thunderhill presented by Hawk Performance and sanctioned by the National Auto Sport Association (NASA) was won today by the Davidson Racing Norma at Thunderhill Raceway in Willows, Calif.
The No. 17 Davidson Racing Norma driven by Brian Frisselle, Randy Pobst, Alex Lloyd and Kyle Marcelli took the overall win and class honors in ESR. The team nursed the Norma to the finish line with engine and transmission issues to give team owner Bob Davidson his first Thunderhill win in four years of trying.
Coming to the line in second place was the ES Class No. 00 Award Motorsport/Ehret Family Winery Porsche driven by Anthony Ward, Pierre Ehret, Kelly Collins, Tom Hacker, Spencer Trennery and Tommy Sadler. The Porsche covered 661 laps for second overall and the ES Class win.
Completing the overall podium was the ES Class No. 6 Stammer Inc./Bavarian Performance BMW driven by Derek Welch, Eddie Nakato, Jeffrey Stammer and Matt Crandall.
“It has been a few years of hard work trying to win this race,” said Bob Davidson, Davidson Racing team owner. “We felt really good coming into the race this year. We have a great crew and a great line-up of drivers. The Norma has been a good car for us for a couple of years. It really came into its own this year and we had lady luck on our side.”
“I am so happy for Bob,” said Brian Frisselle. “He really deserves this victory. I don’t know if there is a team owner in this whole paddock that is more passionate about the 25 Hours of Thunderhill than Bob. We have been hard at it for four years trying to win this for him. Bob has a lot of hard work into this project. We had some engine trouble at the end so we were a little worried. We were able to put Bob in at the end and let him bring the Norma across the finish line to take the checker so it was perfect.”
In ES the No. 00 Award Motorsport/Ehret Family Winery Porsche led from the beginning of the 25 hours. The team, not used to settling for class honors, pursued the leading Norma all race. The pace of the Norma could not be matched by the endurance based Porsche which finished one lap down to the winning Davidson entry.
“We are happy with our second place overall finish considering that we have a GT going up against a prototype,” said Anthony Ward, driver/owner. “Bob and his team got their prototype to live for 25 hours and had the pace to win it. Congratulations to him. Winning the ES Class is a great accomplishment. We gave it 100 percent. We really had nothing go wrong.”
The E0 Class battle went right into the morning hours. The No. 31 Hankook Tires/El Diablo Motorsports BMW took the lead at 9 a.m. and never looked back. The No. 33 CA Sport/Skullcandy/Team Nissan 370Z led through the early evening and into sun rise. The 370Z was just built last week and didn’t turn a wheel on the race track until Saturday morning. The delta at the finish – just five laps. The EO winning BMW was driven by Lance Boicelli, Scott Smith, Dale Sievwright and William Brinkop.
“This year the competition was pretty stiff,” Smith said. “We knew in the past that we had some mechanical issues so we really put in a lot of work preparing for the race. That work paid dividends. We had some minor problems, but overall we had a great race. We had a nut back out of one of the control arms and it corded the right front tire. We tightened everything up and got the car back out.”
Other class winners included the No. 67 BMW of Sparta Evo Brakes/Maxxis Tire/Bullet Performance (Brett Strom, Mickey Miller, Ralph Warren and Robert Green, E1), No. 34 Team RD-R Mazda RX-8 (Dennis Holloway, Joel Miller and Lee Papageorge, E2) and No. 23 RJ Racing Mazda Miata (Gary Brown, John Gibson, Rob Gibson and Roger Eagleton, E3).
RESULTS: Thunderhill 25 Hours