WHITTEN TAKES FIRST WIN IN 2016 AT DAYTONA WITH DREYER & REINBOLD RACING
At the iconic Daytona International Speedway and with his new team Dreyer & Reinbold Racing, Tanner and his Wix Filters, Traction Factory sponsored car made it to the top of the podium with their first win of the season. Saturday's race ended with a 2nd place finish along with the pole and 2 heat wins. On Sunday Tanner also qualified on the pole, won 2 heat races and led all 10 laps of the final to take the win. "No doubt this win is due to the hard work of my entire team at Dreyer & Reinbold Racing. I am so grateful to Dennis Reinbold for this opportunity and putting me in such an awesome car".
WHITTEN KICKS OFF 2016 WITH A PODIUM FINISH IN DALLAS
Whitten along with his new team, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing began their limited season this past weekend in Dallas, Texas at State Fair Park. The weekend began with a clean sweep with fast times in both practice sessions, a pole in qualifying and taking first in both heat races. Although the car was extremely fast, nothing's ever guaranteed in racing. Whitten's Traction Factory and Wix Filters sponsored car, finished with a 3rd place podium position after leading the pack for 5 laps. Whitten and the team left the track ready for the next race in Daytona June 18th & 19th.
NEW GRC LITES TEAM FOR WHITTEN IN 2016
After years of waiting, original GRC Lites test driver Tanner Whitten finally got his chance to race the car he helped develop in 2015. Whitten grabbed a race win and three podiums, briefly leading the championship standings and ending the year firmly within the top five in points.
2016 will see Whitten take on a new challenge with a new team: linking up with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing out of Indianapolis, IN, he'll be focusing entirely on race wins as he runs half of this year's schedule alongside full-time driver Cabot Bigham. In an exclusive interview, Whitten reflects on the decision to run part-time, working with a teammate, and how the series has grown over the past few years. Read the complete interview at http://redbullglobalrallycross.com/news/interviews/tanner-whitten-2016-going-phenomenal-year/
Whitten gets first Win in Detroit!
Red Bull GRC and the Tanner Whitten # 15 Traction Factory and Dirtfish Motorsports team took over Belle Isle, MI for rounds 5 and 6, marking the halfway point of the season. The doubleheader began on Friday with track malfunctions that cancelled practice, qualifying and the first round of heats. Saturday started with fast lap times from Tanner during the morning practice sessions. The points lead placed Tanner on the pole position for Heat 1. Tanner capitalized on the positioning and took the checkered flag in Heat 1. Due to GRC time constraints, Heat 2 and the LCQ were cancelled sending Tanner straight to the final with the pole position. A textbook start gave Tanner an immediate lead. He held and extended the lead for the 10 lap final for an impressive first place finish, a personal best this season.
Coming off of a victory, Tanner and the team were hoping for another podium finish on Sunday. In Heat 1, Tanner had a solid second place finish setting him up for a good starting position in Heat 2. Tanner mounted a charge on Alejandro Fernandez closing the gap, lap after lap, and eventually running out of time to finish second. The competition between Whitten and Fernandez carried over into the Final when Whitten and Fernandez were battling for the second place position. Going into turn one, Fernandez began to cut into Tanner's lane which then forced contact causing terminal damage to Tanner's car ending the final for him. Contrary to GRC rules and regulations, the race was not red-flagged and restarted even though Tanner and Harry Cheung remained in unsafe positions on the track for the remaining 9 laps.
Next stop on the tour is Washington, DC on August 15th.
Whitten Takes Championship Lead in North Carolina!
The location for this past weekends race was MCAS New River near Jacksonville, NC. Deemed "Race the Base" the backdrop was definitely a unique one, with helicopters and tanks around the perimeter of the track and in the paddock area, we couldn't imagine a more patriotic place to hold an event on the 4th of July weekend.
The weekend didn't start out like the team had hoped. On Friday after a couple of laps into the first practice session, one of the lower control arms bent on the car for no apparent reason. It was brought back to the service area where the crew worked hard to replace the control arm and get the car back out on the track for the rest of the practice. Tanner was able to lay down some fast lap times before the rest of the day's practice and qualifying sessions were canceled due to bad weather in the area.
Because of the cancellation on Friday, there would be no qualifying sessions for the weekend, so the drivers went right into the first heat races to battle for starting positions. In the final, Tanner pushed through some handling issues in Heat 1 and Heat 2 to land in the final unscathed. He was in the middle on the second row for the start of the Final, and when the lights turned green, Oliver Eriksson and Austin Cindric had some pretty hard contact in turn 1 causing Cindric to spin. Tanner seized the opportunity to take the 3rd position, whereas many of the other racers took to the Kobalt Tools Joker lap on the first lap around causing Tanner to lose a couple of positions. After taking his Joker on lap 2, Tanner was able to regain a couple of positions to 4th and follow Miles Maroney for the majority of the race. On the final lap, Maroney left the door open on a hairpin in the dirt, so Tanner took this opportunity to rub fenders with him and hop into the 3rd position for the remaining half lap to the finish!
To top it all off and make the weekend that much sweeter, Tanner is now leading the 2015 overall driver's championship by 8 points! This is another huge milestone for Tanner and the DirtFish Motorsports team. As a recap to the weekend, Tanner says, "It was such an honor to race at MCAS New River this weekend. Racing in front of so many men and woman that risk their lives for us was a very humbling experience. The team worked extremely hard over the weekend, overcame some adversity early in the weekend, and bounced back to give me an amazing car for the final. I am really happy to have brought home a 3rd place and the points lead! We are all really excited for Detroit." We are so proud to have the crew and driver that we do for the 2015 season!
Whitten Takes 2nd at Daytona!
The second leg of the 2015 Global Rallycross season heated up quickly this weekend at the Daytona International Speedway located in sunny Florida. The DirtFish team arrived with high hopes for the weekend after Tanner took 4th place two weeks ago at Ft. Lauderdale!
Built by the Red Bull Global Rallycross group, the track at Daytona was full of high speeds, long sweeping corners and a lot more dirt than the race in Ft. Lauderdale. All of which meant timing would be key for a great entry into the Kobalt Tools Joker Lap and build room ahead of the rest of the pack. The teams also faced the added pressure of having to compete in double the events over the weekend. This would not only test the abilities of Tanner and the car, but the endurance of the entire team as well since they would have to prepare the car for a third day of battle.
On Friday, the activities began with practice and qualifying, where Tanner laid down the fastest qualifying lap in the GRC Lites field. This earned him a perfect starting position to take the joker lap right off the line and get out in front of the rest of the drivers. Tanner took full advantage of the start and earned his first ever heat win! In the heat race on Saturday Tanner took a 2nd place and ended up one spot from the podium in the final finishing 4th place.
Sunday was hugely successful! The DirtFish Motorsports Team went into the day ready for battle and to redeem the lost podium from the previous day. Tanner wasn't able to finish the first heat of the day due to a fuel pump malfunction. Brilliant diagnoses and fast repair got the team ready for their next heat, in which Tanner rewarded the team with a 2nd place, and avoided the savage Last Chance Qualifier, which has a reputation for attrition as teams battle fiercely for the last available spot in the Final Heat. With the car in top shape, Tanner ready for action, and the best competitors lined up and hungry, the Final was set for major action. After a battle with Cindric, Tanner was able to fend off the best in the Red Bull GRC SuperCar Lites series and finish in an astounding 2nd place! The DirtFish Motorsports team undoubtedly used all of their years of talent and previous success to help produce an amazing result in a team that had only first competed three weeks prior. Needless to say, the next event in North Carolina on July 5th will be a major battle as Tanner and the team shoot to take over the over points lead.
GRC Ft. Lauderdale Success!
FT. LAUDERDALE, FL, June 5, 2015 — When the DirtFish Motorsports team arrived in Florida for the season opener of the 2015 Red Bull Global Rallycross, they didn't know what level of competition to expect from the other drivers and how they would stack up. It quickly became evident that we had a fast car and one of the top drivers! Tanner Whitten was able to put down some of the fastest times of the practice and qualifying heats out of ten drivers competing in the Super Lites class!
Not only was the competition alone something to contend with, but the actual track itself didn't make things easy on the drivers. At only .42 of a mile, this was one of the shortest and narrowest tracks the RBGRC competitor have seen, which made passing quite a challenge. Although the track would prove to be difficult, it was also a lot of fun! The track included a huge 70 foot table-top jump that immediately dropped into a section of very loose, deep sand that would catch some drivers off-guard if they weren't thoroughly prepared!
It was time for the Final heat, which Tanner had qualified for in 4th. He had a great start and quickly moved his way up, putting him in 2nd place. Unfortunately, he wasn't able to hang onto that place for long because one of the drivers had pushed another off the side of the jump. The officials red flagged the race because the car was wedged between the jump and the safety barrier. It took some time to get the car out, so they had the Super Cars run their final heat before the Super Lites could finish their remaining 5 laps. On the restart, Tanner let the clutch out a little too quick which caused the car to bog down and him to fall all the way back to 8th place. However, with some very smart driving and quick thinking, Tanner was able to pass four cars and even catch the leading three cars, to finish 4th overall!
The Down & Dirty Radio Show - Tanner Whitten Interview
January 19, 2015 - Tanner was on the Jim Beaver Down & Dirty radio show. Below is the link to the interview. Tanner's interview starts at 1:03:56.
DirtFish and Whitten form ‘DirtFish Motorsports’ Team for 2015 Red Bull Global Rallycross Lites Series
SNOQUALMIE, WA, January 19, 2015 — A world--‐renowned Rally driving school and a rookie driver from rural Illinois are partnering to do nothing less than win the 2015 Red Bull Global Rallycross (GRC) Lites Series Championship.
“It’s a natural progression,” says DirtFish General Manager Malcolm ‘Mac’ McInnis. “So many drivers train at the school and our instructors, techs and mechanics are all involved in Rally racing and other motorsports. We have been approached multiple times about taking this step, but the sport, the school and the timing, is right now.”
The DirtFish Motorsports team will be collaborative between DirtFish Rally School and Tanner Whitten, a 22‐year‐old Red Bull GRC newcomer — although he is no stranger to racing.
Whitten, of Congerville, Illinois, has been racing since he could operate the controls. Boats and motorcycles were his early passions. At age 10 he graduated to the USAC .25 Quarter Midget Series, winning 15 features and a Regional Championship his rookie year.
In 2009, Whitten moved on to USAC’s Ford Focus series, where he took the checkered flag at the historic 500th Ford Focus Feature race. Rookie of the Year honors followed in 2010 in the NASCAR Whelen Late Model Series with two feature wins. 2011 saw Whitten in Charlotte, NC with the NASCAR K&N Pro Series.
Whitten Left oval racing in 2012, making his road‐racing debut at Sebring International Raceway in a 2013 Porsche Cayman R for Isringhausen Motorsports. He went on to win at New Jersey Motorsports Park in the Intercontinental Trophy Cup Series. His limited Rallycross experience is impressive nonetheless. As the first American to drive the prototype GRC Lites car, in a private test, he went on to clock the fastest time in the first public tests of the car. Whitten has also trained extensively at DirtFish Rally School.
“There’s pressure,” Whitten says of being handed the keys to a brand new race team with a lofty goal, “but I’ve been ready for this for a long time. I’ve felt pressure before; it’s part of racing. But Mac and Stephen have been so awesome and this opportunity is a blessing. I can’t let them down. We’re out to win a Championship.”
Whitten is referring to DirtFish Rally School founder, Stephen Rimmer, a life‐long Rally enthusiast, rally car collector, club racer during his younger days in England and who enjoys driving his cars at certain events during the season. He opened the school in 2010 on the site of a former lumber mill, providing unequaled opportunities for vehicle testing, specialist training, or corporate team building and events.
On putting all of a new team’s eggs in one rookie basket, McInnis and the DirtfFish staff are impressed with what they see in Whitten. “He’s smart, he’s aware and he’s a young man who thinks about things — and thinks them through. He loves to drive and he’s a good driver,” McInnis says.
The association between DirtFish and Whitten is the first step in what the school hopes to become a formal Rally/Rallycross driver development program. DirtFish Motorsports plans a full 2015 GRC Lites schedule of 12races, kicking off May 31st in St. Petersburg, FL.
Fox & Isringhausen extend respective class points lead; rookie Baxter takes P2 points lead
MILLVILLE, NJ (May 19, 2013) – Damp conditions didn’t stop the close racing at New Jersey Motorsports Park, as Geoff Isringhausen, and Tanner Whitten won Sunday in their classes during the NASA Northeast Thunder sprint race, solidifying their overall weekend wins. The win in P2 marks a first for young gun Whitten, but solidifies the tally for Isringhausen in P1.
As it has been all season, P2 is the class of young guns, with Tanner Whitten & Andrew Baxter answering the call this weekend. Whitten, who was in substitution of Lukas Johnson, who had to complete his finals, was coming off a successful initial test at Autobahn Country Club, and he co-drove with Geoff Isringhausen at Sebring during the ITC Endurance Championship presented by Denney Jewelers in conjunction with Porsche Design. This gave Whitten the drive to compete at NJMP for the sprint wins, the first of his ITC career. “This thing is an absolute rocket ship that Geoff and the entire Isringhausen team put under me. I can’t thank them enough, and Avitus Group and ITC for allowing us to come out and race,” Whitten said of his first ever win. Andrew Baxter finished the weekend in 2nd place, and taking the points lead with 70.
Sunday Race at NJMP
WHITTEN MAKES SPORTS-CAR DEBUT AT SEBRING
On the weekend of April 27th & 28th in Sebring, FL at Sebring International Raceway, Tanner got his first taste of Sportscar Racing under the Isringhausen Motorsports umbrella. Performing two days of testing and participating in a three hour Enduro on the night of the 27th as co-driver for team owner Geoff Isringhausen. After Tanner's first one hour stint brake failure forced Tanner and Geoff to retire from the race. They were running in 3rd place at the time.
Drivers Eye view of Sebring
consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race
and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me.....the task of
testifying to the gospel of God's grace."