Salinas, Ca. (May 1-3, 2014)
Robby was looking forward to Mazda Raceway, hoping to rebound from his misfortunes at Sebring. The weekend schedule was hectic having the bulk of action on Friday. The weekend kicked off with testing on Thursday where Robby was quick despite the tricky conditions. “The weather was uncharacteristically hot for Monterey, California, making the track even more slick than usual,” explained Foley. At the end was testing Robby was confident in the car and was looking forward to getting on with the weekend.
Friday was a very busy day for the Mazda MX-5 Cup by BFG. The day started at 8am with practice and would end at 6:30 pm with race 1. That made for a total of 4 sessions, and 2 hours 15 min of track time. Robby was fast early posting the fastest time in practice 1 and overall in practice in the Skip Barber Pro Challenge class. “I felt like I was struggling a bit to come to terms with the track, but it appeared that everyone else was too,” said Robby, “I was able to dial in the car quickly and put down a quick time.” Robby was confident going into qualifying being quickest in practice. Robby was able to put down a decent time early in the session putting him P3, but as the tires came in he was able to improve his time eventually ending up P2 for both races. Next was Race 1 where Robby got a great start, but unfortunately missed 2nd gear dropping him to 4th place before turn 2. Then going into turn 5 Robby had some contact with another driver at the apex. The situation was ruled to be a racing incident and no action was taken by the stewards. Robby then made a few passes and settled into second place where he ran for the rest of the race behind Ben Albano. The top 3 was Ben Albano, Robby Foley, and Drake Kemper. “I missed the setup a bit with tire pressures,” Robby explained. “We’ve been fighting some cross weight issues all weekend and we were trying to counter it with tire pressures, and the setup wasn’t quite there.” Robby was looking forward to Race 2 knowing the potential speed in the car.
Race 2 was scheduled first thing Saturday morning, but due to fog the race was delayed. Once the track was clear the cars were set out on a series of pace laps and as determined before the cars left the grid the race would be started with a rolling start, as opposed to the usual standing start. Robby got a very good start leading by the start finish line, but settled back to second as cars stacked up into T2. The entire race was back and forth between Robby, Lucas Bize, Ben Albano and Drake Kemper. Robby was running a strong second, battling with Drake Kemper when he started to experience transmission issues. A few laps later with roughly 10 minutes left in the race Robby’s transmission got stuck in fourth gear. Luckily he was able to punch it out of being stuck, but the result was him dropping back to 5th place where he would finish out the race. “So far this season has been really frustrating,” said Foley. “I have had the speed to win, but I’ve just been lacking the racing luck.”
Robby looks forward to Houston where hopefully he can turn his luck around.
He’d also like to personally thank Mazda, BF Goodrich, SCCA Pro Racing, Skip Barber, and his parents for their support.