Riding on the momentum of a successful podium finish at their home track of Road America, ArmsUp Motorsports celebrated a dominating win this weekend
at the Toronto Grand Prix with Brazilian driver Victor Franzoni. Franzoni's claim of the top step marked the team's first win of the 2016 Cooper
Tires USF2000 Championship powered by Mazda season.
The downtown streets of Toronto hosted Rounds 10 and 11 of the championship, adding a modified track format which increased on track incidents during practice and qualifying. ArmsUp Motorsports entered into the event third in the team and driver championship point standings.
Franzoni showed impressive strength on track, qualifying second for race one, 0.164 seconds behind Anthony Martin. As the field went green, Franzoni made a pass on the inside of turn one to take the lead and the two immediately began to pull away from the pack, creating a five second gap. As Martin started to close the gap on Franzoni, a full course caution came out, bunching the field back up. Franzoni lead the field back to green, and held the lead position all the way to the checker flag, earning valuable points towards the championship battle. With the race one win, ArmsUp Motorsports broke the seven race winning streak of Cape Motorsports.
"We finally did it," said Franzoni. "The team did a great job, as always. I'm really happy with this result. I knew I wasn't fast enough to race with Anthony, and that I had to do something. I saw an opportunity on the start with a small gap, I took it, and it worked. That was important."
Franzoni started race two in second position, but a several car incident immediately brought out the first caution. The No. 9 ArmsUp Motorsports car restarted fourth, fighting hard for third position with Jordan Lloyd. With less than 20 minutes to go, Franzoni avoided a spin by Lloyd, taking third position. Within five minutes, the top three were positioned within a second of each other, making an exciting three race battle for first position. The trio of racers kept it clean on the tight, concrete walled street course, with Franzoni and ArmsUp Motorsports earning another podium with a third place finish.
"I love this track even more now," concluded Franzoni. "We have no other race like this on the calendar. It's so hard, but such a good track to race."
The two podium showing at Toronto, as well as recent podiums at Road America, Indianapolis and Barber, reflects the progress of the dynamic between team and driver as the season continues.
"In Barber, we found a little bit in our set up, and in Indianapolis, we got even closer," said Franzoni. "Our set up is working, and we're consistently in the top three. We still need a little something more, and the team is doing a great job. It's working well, and I'm happy with the result."
"We're thrilled with how things are coming together this season," said ArmsUp Motorsports owner Gregg Borland. "Things are settling in very nicely, and we're consistently in the fight, as well as steadily improving with each session. We're in the fight for the championship and looking forward to the next rounds."
In just two weeks, the battle will continue at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, where the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship powered by Mazda will run the only triple header of the race season, in support of the Verizon IndyCar Series, July 29-31. For more information, visit www.midohio.com.