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Aug 10, 2014 - 06:40 AM
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Kyle Gimple Rues What Might Have Been at Road America
Posted by: newsla on Aug 10, 2014 - 06:35 AM
Sports Cars
Kyle Gimple Rues What Might Have Been at Road America


Kyle Gimple was poised for another big day on Saturday as the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge staged Round 9 of the 2014 Championship at Road America. After capturing his fourth consecutive top-five starting position on Friday in qualifying, Gimple opened the race from fourth on the grid.

 

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Unfortunately, the hard-earned track position was almost immediately taken away when the No. 75 Compass360 Racing Children’s Tumor Foundation/HPD/ Racing4Research.org Honda Civic Si was an innocent victim in a multi-car crash on the very first lap.

Despite expertly keeping the car off of the outside wall, the car-to-car contact was enough to cause significant damage to the No. 75 Honda Civic. Gimple was forced to bring the car to pit lane for lengthy repairs which saw the team fall several laps down.

“I was just really an innocent bystander,” said Gimple of the incident. “One of the other Hondas went three wide on us and I was told that he went into the grass and made a pretty abrupt move to get back on track. He hit a Honda that was between us that got sent into me and I got turned hard right into the other cars and I was just along for the ride. I was really surprised that the car wasn’t as damaged as I thought it was with as hard as the hit was. I brought it in and the team changed the lower control arm and we went back out.”

With a focus on the championship, the Compass360 Racing crew made the necessary repairs and returned Gimple to the track as he ran lap times equivalent to those of the leaders. Despite running a strong race pace, that potential of the car was even more disappointing for Gimple who had a sure run to the podium and perhaps a victory eliminated just one lap into the race.

“Ryan (Eversley, co-driver) came on the radio and told me I was running times on pace with the top-five and that hurt pretty bad because we had a really strong car,” added Gimple. “We were really just trying to get as many points as we could and get as many spots as we could. Some other people had some issues today so we did end up moving up a few spots. We’re probably out of the championship now so we’ll just try to go to the next three races and go all out.”

Gimple remained in the Honda Civic for over an hour and a half before handing the controls over to Compass360 Racing co-driver Ryan Eversley who took the car to the checkered flag. The duo was able to make the most of the day, by getting a lap back and capitalizing when cars ahead had issues. In the end, the pair was credited with a 20th place result.

Gimple will be back in race action later this month at VIRginia International Raceway for the next round of IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge competition August 22-23.


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