With only one week between the Lime Rock and Watkins Glen event, the Riley Racing crew was glad to leave Lime Rock Park with very little damage and few repairs. The Continental Tire 150 weekend at Watkins Glen International started extremely well, with Jameson Riley (@jamesonriley) going 2nd quickest again in Practice, demonstrating the true potential of the Riley Racing Mazda RX-8.

After encountering some traffic in qualifying, AJ Riley (@ajriley) qualified the Mazda RX-8 in 16th. Unfortunately, due to a minor technical infraction (non-performance enhancing), the Riley Racing Mazda RX-8 was pushed to the back of the field and would start the race last in 34th.

AJ Riley took the Riley Racing Mazda RX-8 out for final practice a few hours before the race, and immediately encountered a major problem with the throttle. The Mazda RX-8 had very little power at full-throttle, but if the driver backed off the throttle just a little, a majority of the power was available. Needless to say, the Riley Racing drivers had a very difficult task to drive then entire 2 1/2 hour race having to “guess” the optimal throttle position that would allow for the most power.

After an early pit stop during a full-course yellow, AJ Riley had the Mazda RX-8 up to 3rd place from 34th. Because of the earlier pit stop, the team had to pit again for fuel and a driver change to get Jameson Riley in the car. In the end, Jameson made up a few spots after the reshuffle from the pit stops, and was able to bring the car home in 15th place. A great finish for the team considering they started dead last and ran the entire race with throttle issues.


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