Ruud’s Win Streak Ends with Cugliari Victory

29 August 2021 TCAM
  • Cugliari Breaks the Season-long TCX Streak
  • Honda, Skip Barber Racing Take TC, TCA Classes

ELKHART LAKE, Wisc - The 2021 TC America Powered by Skip Barber racing season has been dominated in the TCX category by the #81 BMW M2 CS Cup Classic BMW entry driven by Jacob Ruud - but in the second race of the weekend at Road America, Ruud was dethroned by the #57 BMW M2 CS Cup car driven by Stephen Cugliari for Accelerating Peformance. Cugliari led the closing laps to take home the TCX class victory over Ruud and the #30 BMW M2 CS Cup car of Steve Streimer for Hard Motorsport. 

The TC battle was four cars strong at the front for the entire race, with the #92 Honda Civic Type-R of Eric Powell for Skip Barber Racing School hanging on to claim victory. Behind Powell, who will extend his championship lead over the #9 Honda Civic Type-R of sixth place finisher Kevin Boehm, the #78 Hyundai Veloster N of Jeff Ricca for Genracer placed 2nd, ahead of the 3rd place #51 BMW M240iR, driven by Austen Smith for Auto Technic Racing.

The #16 Honda Civic Si driven by Carter Fartuch with Skip Barber Racing School swept the weekend, winning race 2 by just two seconds after an intense battle with the #33 Hyundai Veloster Turbo of Luke Rumburg for Forbush Performance. The #99 Honda Civic Si of Jose Blanco for VGMC Racing completed the TCA podium at Road America.

TC America Powered by Skip Barber race 2 from Road America had a familiar looking start - the #81 BMW M2 CS Cup from Classic BMW with Jacob Ruud behind the wheel started on the front row, aiming to claim his eighth win in as many starts in 2021 in TCX. Stephen Cugliari, new to the category, quickly jumped to the lead in the opening corner, defending the top spot from Ruud. 

In TC, championship leader Eric Powell stormed away from the battle for 2nd, involving the #78 Hyundai Veloster N of Jeff Ricca, the #51 BMW M240iR, driven by Austen Smith, and the #9 Honda Civic Type-R of Kevin Boehm. The trio battled for second on the long straightaways at Road America, where Ricca and Smith swapped spots throughout the race. The fight had to be put on hold 14 minutes into the race, when the #29 Honda Civic Type-R of Lindsay Brewer brought out a full-course caution after an incident in the kink.

When the race resumed with 16 minutes remaining, Jacob Ruud drove to the left of Cugliari and took the lead away, only to draw attention from race stewards requiring Ruud to give the spot up they determined his restart manoeuvre wasn’t legal. Cugliari took the lead back in turn 14 on the same lap, and never looked back. The TC battled continued to rage for 2nd, while Kevin Boehm mysteriously dropped outside of the top 5 late in the race after showing promising speed throughout the weekend. In TCA, Carter Fartuch fought off Luke Rumburg’s Forbush Performance Hyundai, at one point losing the lead momentarily through turn 5 as Rumburg made a wild dive to try to steal the lead. He ran wide at corner exit, which allowed Fartuch to get back to the lead, where he would stay for the rest of the race.

TC America Powered by Skip Barber races next at Watkins Glen International, September 17-19 in Watkins Glen, New York. All TC America Powered by Skip Barber races are available to watch live and free on the GT World YouTube Channel