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May 06, 2014 - 06:41 AM
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Ende Leads, Finishes On Podium At Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
Posted by: newsla on May 06, 2014 - 06:39 AM
Ende Leads, Finishes On Podium At Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

For the second straight race, Duncan Ende stood on the podium of an IMSA TUDOR United SportsCar Championship race. In Sunday morning's Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix Powered by Mazda, which featured the Prototype Challenge and GT-Daytona classes, Ende and teammate Bruno Junqueira finished in third position in the no. 09 Lino'spresso USA / RSR Racing Oreca FLM09.


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On the strength of Junqueira's pole position in Saturday's qualifying, Ende led the field to the green flag. After he enjoyed a clean start, he began to stretch his lead over the rest of the Prototype Challenge field. Midway through his stint, he was caught by Luis Diaz and battled for the lead before Diaz worked his way past in the first turn of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

During the race's second full course caution period, Ende jumped out of the car and handed it over to Junqueira. Junqueira would guide the car to the checkered flag in third position.

"We didn't have a winning car, but we had a very good car and a very good day for our championship battle," said Ende. "It was a great feeling to lead the field to the green flag and have nothing but clear track ahead of me - at least for a little while until we encountered lapped traffic. I tried hard to keep Luis behind, but I had a flat spotted a tire and wasn't able to fight with Luis without doing more damage to the tire. It's great to stand on the podium at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, one of my favorite tracks."

Ende was thrilled to share the podium with his friends from STANDD (Stop Texting And Driving Distracted). Using Ende's motorsports platform to spread awareness of the dangers of driving distracted, hundreds of race fans at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca signed the STANDD pledge to not drive distracted.

"We are doing our best to spread the STANDD message everywhere we go, so to have Diveeta Thompson from STANDD here this weekend in Monterey - where we had a huge crowd - for this podium celebration makes it even more special," said Ende. "The STANDD message is pretty simple - focus on driving. I think we did a pretty good job of that today."

The next round of the TUDOR Championship will be May 30-31 at The Raceway at Belle Isle in Detroit, Michigan.

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