Braselton, GA. (2 October 2022)– After a qualifying incident forced the team to start from the back of the pack, Rebel Rock Racing closed out the 2022 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge (IMPC) season with a run to eighth in the Fox Factory 120 on Friday with drivers Robin Liddell and Frank Depew.
While the team had been looking to return to victory lane, the result was still encouraging after a Thursday qualifying session saw Depew suffer from contact that prevented him from setting a time. The Lime Rock Park-winning squad would have to start the race from the back of the pack.
With a robust 39 car field in the two-class contest, the traffic was not encouraging as the duo looked to make progress in the two-hour race right from the drop of the green flag. Depew obliged, moving up to run 20th within 12 laps of the race start. With a long green flag run, Depew was able to get into a consistent rhythm, continuing to deal with TCR traffic and making forward progress to run 18th before taking to pit lane to turn the car over to Liddell.
Returning to the fray 31st overall, Liddell charged forward to make up ground until a full course caution slowed the action on the 52nd lap as the Urban Grid machine ran in podium position. Taking to pit lane for a quick service, the No. 71 Camaro GT4.R restarted from 14th with just over a half an hour of racing to go. Liddell came over the radio ahead of the restart to confirm his orders from pit lane: “just pass as many cars as you can,” which he was able to do consistently as he had moved up to 8th by the time the checkered flag dropped.
“Those were some quick cars that he was closing in on but it was a big gap so it was a pretty strong charge that Robin was making,” said Depew. “It has been a difficult season in some ways—we’ve performed well and had our successes but we’ve also had some things out of our control that set us back. I think this was a good recovery from what happened from yesterday. Just like VIR, in both cases we had unavoidable situations where we were starting from the back and we came out with a top ten. We’re looking forward to next season, hoping that we can put one together all year long.”
“It was an unfortunate incident yesterday in qualifying, there was nothing we could do but it meant we didn’t get a time in, and that we made extra work for the guys last night with another trip to the body shop,” said Liddell. “But just like at VIR, Frank did a really good job, it was a really measured drive from him. He drove a smart race, passed some cars, and did a great job. With just one yellow, we missed the window to dive into the pits before the yellow. But I am not sure how much that would have changed the result. Pretty happy with the overall performance of the team and the result. We executed well.”
The 2022 IMSA season saw several highlights for Rebel Rock Racing including a big victory at Lime Rock Park. Rebel Rock Racing closed out the 2022 season fifth on the Provisional IMPC Championship standings.