Team drivers Brienza and Jeffers deliver first team win and five podium finishes
opening round of the 2023 schedule at Sebring International raceway on March 23-24. Driver Joey Brienza showed incredible speed and consistency, starting all three races from the pole, while collecting a pair of runner-up finishes before notching his first series victory in a dominant Race 3 performance. Brienza’s success has put him in the point lead heading to the next event for the first rung of the USF Pro Championships Presented by Cooper Tires ladder. Texan Jack Jeffers was also racing at the front of the pack throughout the event, eventually scoring a pair of third-place podium finishes to sit third in the points. The team has a dedicated quartet of drivers in the series. Erick Schotten in the #90 Exclusive Autosport car and Giovanni Cabrera in the #93 Exclusive Autosport car maximized the event to gain crucial experience, each making considerable progress. As a result, Exclusive Autosport left the Sebring weekend leading the Team Championship standings.
“I am thrilled to kick off the Juniors season with a win, 5 podium finishes, and the team and driver championship leads,” said Michael Duncalfe, Team Principal. “A lot of work has gone into this program, and it was great to celebrate the team’s success at Sebring. The unique part of our Juniors program is that we have drivers with very different levels of experience. That said, I am proud of all four of our drivers as I believe they each, individually, achieved their goals through the weekend. We are going to really keep pushing to develop their skills so we can have all four challenging upfront. We have very positive momentum to capitalize on as we shift our focus over to Barber at the end of April.”
“Race 3 was about how you would imagine it when you go to sleep or when you are in the car 10 minutes before,” Enthused Joey Brienza, driver of the UBS #91. “I made a good start, nothing fantastic, but enough to keep the lead through Turn One. Nicolas (Giaffone) and Jimmie (Lockhart) both pushed hard at the start of the race and applied a lot of pressure, but I was able to hold them off. As soon as I got some clear track, I was able to push. The car was fantastic. Exclusive Autosport did an awesome job with the car and I can’t say thank you enough to them. This win and my two second-place finishes in Race 1 and 2 give us good momentum for the long season.”
“The races started off decent. We didn’t have the pace of the other guys and we fell back a little bit,” said Jack Jeffers, driver of the Corpay Cross-Border Solutions #92. “We were still fighting hard and then they were battling so I was able to catch up a little bit. My pace really came through as I gained more confidence with the car. I was able to get past the two VRD cars and catch the leaders. Giaffone made a mistake at the end that allowed he and Brienza to battle a bit more. I think if we had a few more laps, I could have been there. Overall, a good comeback from what wasn’t an ideal start, especially after grabbing two podiums in my first two starts. I’d like to thank Exclusive Autosport, my parents, and Corpay Cross-Border for getting me here.”
The team will now head back to the shop and prep the cars for Rounds 4 and 5 at Barber Motorsports Park on April 26-27.