Just as he did at the Circuit of the Americas a few weeks ago, St. Cloud, Florida resident Tyler Gonzalez claimed the Hard Charger Award for the second event weekend in a row. Taking on the Birmingham Motorsports Park facility in his Copeland Motorsports prepared #57, Gonzalez rebounded from a difficult qualifying effort to put on a show and drive forward to an impressive top-five result in race three before disaster struck on the opening lap of race two.
“Our car was much better in the first race of the weekend,” explained Gonzalez, who crossed the line in fifth after starting 13th. “After qualifying, we put our heads together, and I was able to change my driving and the team changed the setup which was successful for some other drivers in our program. The combined changes proved to be the right ones, and I was able to push my way towards the front of the field.”
After a disappointing qualifying run early on Saturday morning, Gonzalez rolled off the grid for round three from thirteenth but wasn’t in the position long. Quickly moving forward and into the top-ten, the young Floridian found himself battling for the top-five before mid-race distance.
“Our car was fast. Though we finished a fair distance behind the leaders, I think the pace is there,” added Gonzalez. “If I can get it together in qualifying and be at the front of the field, I will be in a better position to compete for a win.”
Race two ended quickly for the 14-year-old as contact on the opening complex of corners broke the front end of the #57 Superior Coating Systems backed Copeland Motorsports entry.
“Starting tenth on the grid, Tyler made it through corner one keeping all four wheels on the racing surface and with very little to no contact at all,” explained Team Owner Dean Copeland. “Unfortunately, one of the drivers that were shoved wide in corner one, came back onto the track and side swiped Tyler, pushing him into another car. With major damage to the front end, his race was over before it even started.”
With the speed, result, and confidence from a strong race one, hopes were high for the Rookie of the Year candidate in race two, but he will have to wait until the next series event for a chance to stand on the podium for his first time in series competition.
With ten weeks away from official race action, Tyler Gonzalez’s Global MX-5 Presented by BF Goodrich Series will resume June 21-23 at the famed Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
For more information and/or partnership opportunities on Tyler Gonzalez, please contact Alberto Gonzalez at 407.466.9083 or via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo by: Ignite Media