HPD Blog

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Grand-Am Koni ST Champs! Driver: Miller, Team: Compass360, Mfr.:Honda

DANVILLE, Va. (Oct. 4, 2009) - Needing only to finish 28th, Christian Miller watched as several cars were withdrawn due to accidents or mechanical problems during the Bosch Engineering Octoberfest weekend, the season finale on the Grand-Am KONI Sports Car Challenge circuit. When only 24 Street Tuner (ST) cars took the green flag for the start of the race, Miller was given the go-ahead to race for the victory.

Just over an hour into the event, Miller brought his No. 74 Skunk2/034 Motorsport Honda Civic Si to the garage area with a broken axle. He had apparently run over a curb hard enough to cause the damage. He would have liked to have finished the race - one in which he was classified in a season-worst 21st place after starting seventh - instead of sitting in the pits, but he was able to flash a smile after picking up his first series championship.

The race was won by Tom Long and Derek Whitis in the No. 145 Mazda/Freedom Autosport Mazda MX-5.

"Absolute reliability," said Miller, who finished the season with two victories and nine top-10 finishes. "Everybody ... Honda, Skunk2, Compass360 ... every single person involved with this team made this happen. We only won a couple of races early in the season, and at every single race, the car has been flawless. We've stayed out of trouble and we were able to do the whole distance without scratching the car. [The race at] New Jersey was amazing. We went 1-2-3 with the team; it proved how hard these guys work and what they can accomplish. From the team standpoint, that was probably the best one.

"I think the car has a soul, and knew that its job was done, and [said] ‘Alright, I'm tired, put me away now,'" Miller concluded. "Winning the championship is absolutely incredible. It's been a long time coming. I'm speechless about how I feel. I'm just thankful, thankful to my folks, and everybody in my life who's made this possible on a personal level."

In addition, Miller helped Compass360 Racing and Honda earn their first team and manufacturers' titles, respectively.

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