Lux Oregon native Cindi Lux made quite a splash over Labor Day weekend in the motor city.
Lux, started 13th at Belle Isle, but managed to launch quite a defense -- by wheeling the No. 2 Team Mopar Dodge Viper Competition Coupe towards the front of the field. Lux, the 12-time road racing champion, fought the best of the best to grab her fourth top-10 this season.
But getting top-10's is almost old hat for Lux.
"From a driver's point of view, the Belle Isle street course is super rough and bumpy," described Lux in her blog for Mopar. "I have driven only two street courses over the years, Long Beach and St. Petersburg in Florida.
"And both of these tracks were crystal smooth compared to this place. But my race engineer Matt Bejnarowicz gave me a killer hotrod to drive and it handled the bumps extremely well.
"I started the race in 13th and ended up finishing eighth. Our fourth top 10 finish of the year. However, we did manage to collect two special awards in this race as well -- the Hard Charger Award for the driver who advances the most positions in the race and the Hole Shot Award.
Now this Hole Shot Award is huge for me personally because I have really struggled at our standing starts. As most of you know, we do not do "rolling starts" at the beginning of our races; we do a standing start on the front straight away. We are the only sports car series in North America that has this crowd pleasing element.
"I was just about to call my Mopar drag race brothers to get some tips on getting a better launch. But the drag racing gods must have been looking out for me because I NAILED the start at Belle Isle. It felt awesome."
Lux is an accomplished ALMS and SCCA Club racer. In 1999, she became the the inaugural Women's Global GT Series Champion. She just might be the most decorated, yet underrated female driver in the world.
While Danica is getting the accolades, Lux is quietly racking up victories.
In addition to her 12 road racing championships, Lux also has 78 first place finishes, 48 second place finishes, 29 third place finishes and 48 pole positions.
Still, being able to wheel a Dodge Viper in Mopar City is not something Lux will soon forget.
"Racing in the Motor City was probably the coolest race I have done in a very long time," said Lux. "It was amazing to have all the Viper and Mopar fans out there. You could feel them pushing you forward every lap. On the first pace lap of the race, they had a special chalet area and I could hear them screaming and cheering over the loud sound of all the race motors!
"It was just crazy. Our Mopar car was very good today on track. This race is truly a shot in the arm for us and we needed another Top-10 finish to turn things around. I feel good things are ahead for us the last two races of the year. I wish I could pack all the Mopar and Viper owners into the truck with us when we leave here. That energy is great!"
In addition to her racing, she enjoys a successful marriage with husband Fred, and serves as President of Lux Performance Group,LLC, Automotive Consulting Firm.
Next up for Lux is the SPEED World Challenge GT SCAA race at Thunderbolt Raceway in Millville, New Jersey on Saturday, September 27.
by Linda Przygodski