Ford Racing Mustang Challenge Championship Hits High Gear at Autobahn

July 28, 2010 Tooele, UT—(28 July 2010)— Jason von Kluge and Tony Buffomante will resume their battle for the Ford Racing Mustang Challenge championship crown this weekend as the series makes a return visit to Autobahn Country Club in Joliet, Illinois for the Autobahn Grand Prix. When the green flag flies to start the race on Sunday, it will mark the start of a final three-race run to close the season and name the 2010 Mustang Challenge Champion at Miller Motorsports Park.

The New Jersey Motorsports Park round saw Buffomante retake the championship lead and then grow his advantage during the doubleheader race weekend as he and von Kluge both made podium appearances while youngsters Ben Crosland and Kyle Gimple broke through to take their debut Mustang Challenge race victories.

Buffomante’s family racing reputation might well have been established in the upstate New York region, but the second generation racer now calls Chicago home and he’s looking to make the most of the home field advantage this weekend.

“I’ve always gone well at Autobahn and of course you always want to do well in your own back yard, no question!” offered Buffomante. “Jason is a very strong racer and I’ve got to make the most of every race because he’s not making this easy for me. The Capaldi Racing guys have been fantastic, and this is as close to a home race for those guys as we’ll have all year so I’m hoping to do them proud at Autobahn and get any kind of advantage on Jason that I can.”

For von Kluge, who recovered from a disappointing race one at New Jersey Motorsports Park to score a strong second place in the second race, the Autobahn weekend also carries a bit of a home-track feel for the native Michigan driver.

“It was a pretty good run we had in the second race in New Jersey, but we’re going to have to get back on top and win if we want to move up on Tony,” said von Kluge. “Hopefully we can just avoid any bad luck at Autobahn and get some points back on Tony this weekend.”

While the championship battle will be a central focus on the weekend, there will also be plenty of fighting for individual honors as well.

Brad Adams, who netted the “We’re Going Green” honor at New Jersey Motorsports Park, will target a strong start and finish at Autobahn, as he has the chance to make up some championship ground. But if he’s looking for another check, he’s going to have to keep an eye out for RP Motorsports’s Richard Golinello, who has made several fast starts this season.

RP Motorsport’s Ben Crosland enjoyed the view from the top of the podium at NJMP and will look to return to that perspective this weekend, but will surely have to supersede another first-time winner in Kyle Gimple if he wants to return to victory lane.

The Sunday Group Management “Rookie of the Race” honor, which sets aside $150 for the series’ Official Charity, the Austin Hatcher Foundation (, will be contested by Homestead-Miami round winner John “Chip” Scarlett, with Golinello and Gimple also eligible for the award this weekend.

News and Notes:

More Drivers “Taking Control” in 2010
The 2010 Mustang Challenge season has been a highly competitive one, all the way through the field. The BFGoodrich “Take Control” Award, which rewards the driver making up the most positions during the race with two BFGoodrich g-Force R1 Tires, has seen six different drivers up on the podium to pick up the award so far in 2010.

Zach Lutz (Homestead)
George Winkler (Homestead)
Ben Crosland (VIR)
Brad Adams (Lime Rock)
Dan Aweida (Watkins Glen, Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course)
Gimple (New Jersey Motorsports Park)

We’re Going GREEN!
Initiated for the first time at the VIR race weekend, the “We’re Going Green” Award rewards the driver who makes up the most positions on the opening lap with a check for $250. GREEN Filters are the Official Filters for the Mustang Challenge, and every Ford Mustang FR500S machine you see racing this weekend carries the part for improved performance.

Steve Phillips (VIR)
Richard Golinello (Lime Rock Park)
Richard Golinello (Watkins Glen, Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course)
Pratt Cole (NJMP Race one)
Brad Adams (NJMP Race two)

Sunday Group Management Rookies of the Race Make Donations to Austin Hatcher Foundation—
The highest finishing eligible Rookie drivers win a $150 donation given in their name to the official charity of the Mustang Challenge-The Austin Hatcher Foundation.

John “Chip” Scarlett (Homestead)
Richard Golinello (Homestead)
Kyle Gimple (VIR, Lime Rock, Watkins Glen, NJMP)
Craig Capaldi (Mid-Ohio)

Ford Racing Mustang Challenge Points Standings after Round 7, Top Ten:
1 391 Tony Buffomante
2 382 Jason von Kluge
3 336 Pratt Cole
4 328 Dan Aweida
5 247 Brad Adams
6 237 Kyle Gimple
7 223 Richard Golinello
8 218 George Winkler
9 217 Ben Crosland
10 200 John Scarlett

Ford Racing Mustang Challenge 2010 Schedule:
1. Homestead March 6-7 Winner: Jason von Kluge (2x)
2. Virginia International Raceway April 24-25 Winner: Jason von Kluge
3. Lime Rock Park May 29-30 Winner: Tony Buffomante
4. Watkins Glen June 5-6 Winner: Tony Buffomante
5. Mid-Ohio June 19-20 Winner: Jason von Kluge
6. New Jersey July 17-18 Winners: Ben Crosland+Kyle Gimple
7. Autobahn July 30-Aug 1 Round 9
8. Miller Motorsports Park Sept 10-11 Rounds 10 & 11


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