TRG is excited to reunite with Spencer Pumpelly in St. Petersburg for the Pirelli World Challenge Firestone Grand Prix March 9-11. But before we hit the track in the TRG Aston Martin GT3, we caught up with this sportscar racing star and asked him a few questions.
TRG: Why do you have a passion for sportscar racing?
Spencer: Sportscar racing has always captured my imagination from the time when I was in elementary school watching my dad race in big events like the Sun Bank 24 at Daytona or the 12 hours of Sebring. I love that racing gives me the ability to do something I enjoy and at the same time, it affords me the opportunity to work with incredible people. There are times when I feel like our sport has been stale or made bad decisions but at the core of my being I am a sportscar racer and I am always drawn back in. I can only guess as to why I have a passion for it but there is no question I do.
What makes racing for The Racer’s Group special to you?
Kevin and Debra Buckler are like extended family and we had great times together in the late 2000’s and early 2010s. We won the Daytona 24 in 2011 together and four of my six podium finished in the Rolex 24 came while driving for TRG. We also won a lot of races in the Rolex series, Continental Tire Sportscar Challenge, and we even landed a Podium in the NJMP ARCA race. I’m looking forward to my return not just to the team but to our winning ways.
What do you look forward to on race day?
Donuts. Not the pastries, but the ones I leave on track during the victory lap. Diving fast cars is fun but the real appeal of racing a car like the TRG Aston Martin GT3 is the chance to compete for the win in a series as tough as Pirelli World Challenge. While I enjoy the fight, the spoils are what I really look forward to on race day.
What is in your duffel bag?
Nothing exciting. I have 3 pair of Nomex socks that each have a sock labeled left and right. I can assure you I have never raced with a left sock on the right foot or vice versa, not that I believe in superstitions, but I’m just that attentive to details. My running gear would be the only thing of interest. I like to do my track walks at a sub 7:00/mi pace.
What is your daily driver and why?
I drive my second Tesla Model S. As soon as I heard about it I was looking into what it would take to own one. After four years I upgraded to a new one with full autopilot. Living in downtown Atlanta and charging at the house make a ton of sense as we rarely do more than 50 miles in a day, 1/5 the total range.
In preparation for race: What insights do you have about the St. Pete circuit?
It’s 1/2 typical stomp and steer street circuit, half fast and flowing. The car has to be able to handle the tight turns as well as the sweepers but the biggest challenge is to put the power down off the tight 90’s.
Bet you didn’t know…
Spencer is the lead guitarist for the Terrible Two, one of the hottest bands in Atlanta. https://www.facebook.com/TerribleTwoAtlanta/