TOPEKA, Kan. (Jan. 10, 2006) – Jon Groom Racing has announced that Lawson Aschenbach, of Gaithersburg, Md., will pilot the team’s No. 66 AXA Financial Porsche 911 GT3 (997) for the entire 2006 SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT season.-30-
Aschenbach, 22, made immediate waves in the series in 2005, placing third at the CENTRIX Financial Grand Prix of Denver, the first SPEED World Challenge event of his career. He followed that performance with a 10th-place finish at the year’s final event at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca despite an early race spin.
He joins a Jon Groom Racing team that turned in a solid 2005 campaign, scoring one win and helping Porsche to a second-place finish in the SPEED GT Manufacturers’ Championship Presented by RACER Magazine.
“We’re really excited to have Lawson on board to lead our effort to win the championship in 2006, especially having come so close last year,” JGR Owner Jon Groom said. “I first met Lawson in 2002 when we both raced in the SCCA F2000 series and he impressed me then. He has continued to impress me since, particularly last year when he did such a great job finishing third in his first World Challenge GT race at the challenging Denver street course.”
Prior to joining SPEED World Challenge at the end of last season, Aschenbach was a three-time World Karting Association Grand Nationals winner before moving to cars at age 16. He won the Southeast Formula Ford title in 2001, moved on to the SCCA Pro F2000 series and won the Road to Indy Oval Crown Championship in that series in 2002.
Deciding to make the move to sports cars in 2003, Aschenbach won in only his second IMSA GT3 Cup race at a very wet Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
Armed with his experience, Aschenbach is ready to join his new team at a planned test session Jan. 27-Feb. 14 in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina in preparation for the season’s first event at Sebring International Raceway March 15-17.
“I am very excited to be joining Jon Groom Racing this year,” Aschenbach said. “Their experience and dedication has shown during their very successful season in 2005. I’m looking forward to continuing that success in 2006.”
Groom said his team’s efforts toward a successful 2006 have been non-stop.
“The team has been working flat out since the last race of 2005,” Groom said. “And they are determined to be in a position again to fight for both the Drivers’ and Manufacturers’ titles.”
For more information about Jon Groom Racing, visit www.jongroomracing.com.
For more information about SCCA SPEED World Challenge, visit www.world-challenge.com.
About AXA Financial
AXA Financial is one of the premier U.S. organizations providing financial protection and wealth management through its strong brands: AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company, AXA Advisors, LLC, Alliance Capital Management, L.P., Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., LLC, AXA Distributors, LLC, and the MONY family of companies, including MONY Life Insurance Company, U.S. Financial Life Insurance Company, Advest, Inc., and Lebenthal, a division of Advest, Inc. (Member: NYSE, NASD, SIPC.) AXA Financial had approximately $551.3 billion in assets under management as of September 30, 2004. AXA Financial is a member of the global AXA Group.
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