Long-loyal squad hits ‘pause’ in IMSA
Orlando, Fla. (25 April 2016) – Enough is enough, for now. After a record-setting run that saw the squad go from mere concept to winningest team in series history, Luis Bacardi’s Rum Bum Racing will suspend its 2016 IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge campaign.
The team made a winning first impression in 2010, taking a victory at Daytona International Speedway in its first-ever race with drivers Matt Plumb and Gian Bacardi.
From that speedy debut, the team has accumulated in its 66 starts, 21 wins, 6 poles, and 32 podiums. It has completed 91% of total race laps, and has led 17% of those laps. The organization won the GRAND-AM Championship in 2012 and scored another spot in the record books with an encore GRAND-AM Championship again in 2013.
The team not only scored back-to-back titles for the team and drivers in 2012 and 2013, Bacardi’s Rum Bum Racing also played critical points-generating roles in the Manufacturers Championship, pushing BMW to the title in 2010 and 2011, and then doing the same for Porsche again in 2012 and 2013.
Rum Bum Racing wasn’t afraid of the big stage, either. The team came just a coffee mug of fuel short of scoring a podium in their Rolex 24 At Daytona debut in 2013 with an Audi R8, and again made a big impression with an exploratory run in IMSA’s GTD Class at Sebring in 2014.
Lead driver and General Manager Matt Plumb raced into the record books, not only becoming the winningest driver in the history of the championship, but also doing so in record time. Team Manager Joe Varde also added to his Championship record of 9 as driver and crew chief.
Aligned with Bacardi’s emerging Rum Bum brand, the team has been a successful group off the track as well. With a full merchandise line of apparel for its fans to support the team’s IMSA efforts, a remarkable social media following with over 53,000 fans on Facebook, and a concerted effort to give fans the behind the scenes look at the team via a significant video effort (www.rumbumracing.com/videos), the team has been as active getting the word out as it has to get the wins.
Originally formed ahead of the 2010 GRAND-AM season, Rum Bum Racing has remained loyal to GRAND-AM, and then IMSA. The 2015 season saw the signature preparation and pit execution from the Joe Varde-led team, however the team came up short in pace for the Championship over the powerful Stevenson Camaro. The 2016 season saw the team fighting once again to hold a lead on a number of occasions due to once again perfect strategy and execution in the pits only to suffer a devastating mechanical failure at Daytona and a third place finish at Sebring.
The team will continue to evaluate competition possibilities in the future as well as investigate partnership opportunities.
Rum Bum Racing Information:
2010: 3 Wins (Daytona, Trois-Rivieres, Miller Motorsports Park)
BMW Manufacturer Championship
2011: 3 Wins (Daytona, Lime Rock Park, Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course)
BMW Manufacturer Championship
2012: 5 Wins (Barber Motorsports Park, Homestead-Miami Speedway, Road America, Watkins Glen, Lime Rock Park)
IMSA Team Champions, Porsche wins Manufacturer Championship
2013: 3 Wins (Barber Motorsports Park, Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Road America)
IMSA Team and Driver Champions, Porsche wins Manufacturer Championship
2014: 1 Win (Kansas Speedway)
2015: 3 Wins (Daytona, Road America, Virginia International Raceway)