Corry Takes Road America USF2000 Spoils for Local Pabst Team

Photo credit: Gavin Baker Photography

Source: Series PR

ELKHART LAKE, Wis. – USF2000 Presented by Continental Tire today reached the halfway point in its 18-race season with the first of two races which will comprise this weekend’s Elite Engines Grand Prix of Road America. The schedule was affected by severe weather this morning, which led to the second race being postponed until tomorrow morning, although that will be of little consequence to the locally based Pabst Racing team, which will surely celebrate a fine second win of the season for Sam Corry, from Cornelius, N.C.

A dramatic affair saw Joey Brienza, from Golden, Colo., emerge in second for Exclusive Autosport, while VRD Racing’s Max Taylor, from Hoboken, N.J., rounded out the podium in third.


The race began earlier this afternoon with championship leader Max Garcia, from Coconut Grove, Fla., lining up at the front of the 21-car grid for Pabst Racing after earning his fifth Continental Tire Pole Award of the season during the lone qualifying session held on Friday morning. Unfortunately a heavy rain shower forced officials to red-flag the race after merely one lap behind the Honda Civic Pace Car, which led to a lengthy delay before the race finally was restarted much later in the afternoon.

Photo credit: Gavin Baker Photography

A sequence of incidents interrupted the flow of the restarted race, such that there was time for merely a two-lap dash to the checkered flag. Corry had usurped teammate Garcia from the race lead during one of the earlier cautions, and assisted by some dramatic weaving in an attempt to break the slipstream, he was able to achieve his goal and take the checkered flag just under one second clear of Brienza.

A poor start saw Taylor, who started on the outside of the front row, slip as low as seventh in the order. But the teenager put his head down as the race reached toward its conclusion, diving to the inside under braking for Turn 12, Canada Corner, on the final lap to emerge in third ahead of Garcia, who had been shuffled back at the final restart, and Elliott Cox, from Indianapolis, Ind.

Cox, who started seventh for the Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing Development team, was involved in an early skirmish which relegated him all the way to 15th. Incredibly, despite a broken front wing, Cox fought back through the field to run as high as third on the final lap before finally being shuffled back to a still impressive fifth.

Ayrton Houk, from McCordsville, Ind., also drove another strong race for the DC Autosport team, rising from 11th on the grid to sixth at the finish, although the Tilton Hard Charger Award was claimed by debutant Jace Bacon (Jay Howard Driver Development), from Gilbert, Ariz., who kept out of trouble and rose from 21st on the grid to 14th.

Also impressive was the recovery drive posted by teammate Michael Costello, from Naples, Fla. His hopes of a good finish seemed to be over after his attempt to overtake to pass Garcia for the lead soon after a restart in Turn One saw him spinning off into the gravel. Remarkably, and with huge credit to the AMR INDYCAR Safety Team, Costello not only was able to rejoin the race, he even contrived to fight his way back to an eighth-place finish.

The PFC Award went to Augie Pabst as the winning car owner.

Today’s schedule revisions has led to the second race of the weekend being postponed until 10:30 tomorrow morning, when VRD Racing’s Max Taylor is due to start from the pole position by virtue of having posted the best of every drivers’ second-fastest lap during qualifying on Friday.

Provisional championship points after nine of 18 races:

1. Max Garcia, 226

2. Sam Corry, 186

3. Evagoras Papasavvas, 178

4. Max Taylor, 149

5. Elliot Cox, 139

6. Joey Brienza, 138

7. Hudson Schwartz, 109

8. Ayrton Houk, 102

9. Nicolas Giaffone, 99

10. Quinn Armstrong, 98

Sam Corry (#23 Redline Oil/Stilo/Simpson Race Products-Pabst Racing Tatuus USF-22): “Starting P5 today after an okay qualifying yesterday, it felt really good just to get out here and win. We needed that one. This is Pabst’s home race so it is really cool to be able to do it for them here. Road America is the National Park of Speed, and it is beautiful here and it’s beautiful to get a win. I can’t thank those boys enough. They put on a really good race car. It was a bit of a crazy race. Going into Turn One on the last restart, I had everybody up my rear trying to come through.”

Joey Brienza (#91 Huntsman Mental Health Foundation/UBS-Exclusive Autosport Tatuus USF-22): “It was a good race and really good points for the championship. I am really happy for the team. It was a crazy day with the weather and it is nice to come back with a trophy for them and for all of their hard work. A win is always the goal but we’ll take second on one of these crazier days. I’m happy for the team and want to thank all of my sponsors.”

Max Taylor (#3 PINK ETF/Susan G Komen Foundation-VRD Racing Tatuus USF-22):“It was definitely a hectic race. I had a bad start and had to get my head together on that one and was able to do so. At the end of the race, I fought my way up and made some good passes and a really solid lunge in the last corner. My team put an absolute rocket ship of a car together. They did an amazing job and I am looking for high hopes tomorrow and get that win.”