The 2005 SCCA Pro Racing SPEED Touring Car Championship has already gotten off to a whirlwind start, as 31 cars representing Acura, Audi, BMW, Ford, Dodge, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz and Subaru convened in Central Florida for the traditional Sebring season opener on March 18. And when the dust settled, it was Peter Cunningham’s RealTime Acura TSX that grabbed the top spot on the podium to start the year out right.
With only a matter of days for the Touring Car teams to catch their breath, the SPEED World Challenge circus moves 120 miles to the west and north to set up shop at the Honda Grand Prix of St Petersburg. Round Two of the 11-race 2005 calendar will take place this weekend on the 1.8-mile temporary road circuit along the shores of Tampa Bay. Joining the popular SCCA production-based series will be the Indy Racing League as they compete in their first-ever non-oval event.
Four of the five Acuras from the RealTime stable placed in the top-12 at Sebring. That show of strength was made possible by a number of factors, including a tremendous amount of effort from the Andrew Armistead-led crew from Saukville, Wisconsin. And the cars themselves are pretty special too. Acura is the most successful manufacturer in the 16-year history of the Touring Car Championship.
American Honda and its Acura Division are now in their 18th year of involvement with RealTime Racing. During that time, RealTime has achieved much success, including three IIRA ice racing championships, a SCCA PRO Rally title, eight SCCA SPEED World Challenge Drivers’ Championships and an equal number of World Challenge Touring Car Manufacturers’ titles. It goes without saying that American Honda remains RealTime’s number one supporter, but there are a number of other partners that are also instrumental to the team’s accomplishments.
RED LINE OIL has been a featured sponsor of the team since its Rally program commenced in 1992. Since 1979, the privately-held Red Line Synthetic Oil Corp. has grown to manufacture over 80 quality products, including motor and gear oils, assembly lubes, fuel additives, and its popular WaterWetter cooling additive for the automotive, motorcycle, marine, and industrial markets. The world’s top racing teams and most discriminating enthusiasts use Red Line Oil products exclusively.
In 1951, Eibach built their first suspension springs by hand, in a workshop in Central Germany. Today, Eibach is the leading name worldwide for high-quality suspension technology. They recognize the demanding requirements of motorsports, from F1 to WRC, are the ideal testing grounds for continuous innovations. RealTime has been taking advantage of this ‘Horsepower for the Turns’ since the beginning, and is proud to represent Eibach in North America’s most exciting production-based series.
Returning for a second year of involvement with the team, MEMPHIS Car Audio has stepped up from its associate role last year to featured-sponsor status for 2005. Now celebrating its 40th year of aftermarket sound, Memphis music is the real thing, equally at home on the porch or in the garage, cruising the avenue or rocking the concert hall. While you won’t find that music in any of the five RealTime Acura racecars, just ask anyone who’s got the best tunes in the World Challenge paddock!
RealTime is pleased to announce a new association with BuyBrakes.com. This company was established by a guy Peter Cunningham has known since 1988, and has been actively involved in the performance aftermarket for the past 20 years. BuyBrakes.com provides the automotive enthusiast with a one-stop secure online source to buy better brakes for a car, truck or SUV. So if you’re looking for better brakes at lower prices, go to BuyBrakes.com
The newest member of the RealTime sponsor list is American Honda’s Industry-
Education Program. For a new career as a Honda team member trained technician click on www.HondaCareers.com. Once there, you can find out more about their program for high school students called AYES (Automotive Youth Educational Systems) or after graduation, there’s PACT (Professional Automotive Career Training), a two-year College Degree Level Program for automotive technology.
Acura offers its A-SPEC performance packages not only for the RSX and TSX, but also the RL and TL models as well. Acura A- SPEC is a complete dealer-installed accessory package that addresses the demands of performance enthusiasts by providing enhanced handling, aggressive looks, quality and durability, while maintaining the legendary Acura driving experience as well as the factory warranty.
SPORTCOMPACTCAR is a leading publication from the Primedia Group covering the tuner market and performance automotive scene. In 2005, they are also in charge of producing the SPEED World Challenge Fan Guide. The popular monthly magazine has been covering Peter Cunningham’s race-by-race exploits since the start of 2004.
sparco was formed in 1977 by two race drivers with a passion for motorsports. Today, thousands of professional and amateur racing drivers rely on Sparco to protect them in a most demanding environment, the cockpit of a racecar. RealTime has always counted on Sparco for the best in seats, belts, suits and steering wheels.
For more than 100 years, BOSCH has developed innovative products that have shaped the automotive industry. For the past seven years, RealTime has relied on many of those products, including fuel injectors, spark plugs, fuel pumps and other electronic components to achieve a winning record at the race track.
Wellman Products Group has been engineering and manufacturing friction materials for the automotive industry for nearly a century. Marketed under the HAWK PERFORMANCE brand, they make some of the best brake pads for street or motorsport use, from NASCAR stockers to the fleet of Touring Car RealTime Acuras.
From its inception in 1961, brembo has been a world-leader in the brake business, from Michael Schumacher’s Ferrari F1 machine to the victorious Dakar Rally Raid truck from Mitsubishi. Brembo has been helping RealTime cars slow down quickly (the idea isn’t to stop—just to scrub off a little speed) since the NSX days in 1996.
Valley Graphix and TOTAL Auto Body are two local Wisconsin companies that help the RealTime Acuras maintain their shiny and professional appearance. Both outfits are experts in their fields and understand the extra demands of prompt service needed by a race team. Without their assistance, the team’s fleet of Acura racecars wouldn’t be the best-looking cars on the SPEED World Challenge grid.
Editor's Note: The Temple of VTEC will be in St. Petersburg to cover this weekend's SPEED World Challenge Touring Car race as well as the Honda Grand Prix IRL race. Stay tuned to TOV for exclusive coverage and content as we provide behind the scenes footage of the action.