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Sally McNulty scores pair of podiums, equals career best in TC America

"Came into this weekend feeling the most confident I ever have" – Sally McNulty enjoyed a remarkable start to her 2024 TC America season at Sonoma Raceway, where she collected a pair of podium finishes in the TC class, equalling her career best of second in race 1.


Sally McNulty, Ricca Autosport, 2024 TC America, Sonoma
Photo credits: MotorSportMedia | Halston Pitman

Sally McNulty enjoyed a remarkable start to her 2024 TC America season at Sonoma Raceway, where the driver of the #780 Hyundai Elantra N1 TC operated by GenRacer Ricca Autosport collected a pair of podium finishes in the TC class, as well as her joint career best of second in race 1.


McNulty had in fact claimed her first podiums in her pro racing career last year, when she finished both the races at VIRginia International Raceway in the top three, following a positive progression in her rookie season in the TC class. She had previously competed in the TCA class, where she scored four top-five finishes and finished eighth in the driver's standings in 2022.


In her sixth season in the series, McNulty returned to experienced team GenRacer – which claimed 8 class wins last year – aiming to continue her positive trajectory into 2024.

And the opening weekend at California's Sonoma Raceway was precisely that: McNulty has established herself as one of the most consistent drivers in the TC class and has clearly continued to showcase improved pace and racecraft, with results to prove for it.


Despite limited practice time – due to the track action being postponed to early Saturday after a track repaving on Friday – Sally's potential for a top three was soon evident from the qualifying, when she clocked the third fastest time in class with a 1:52.770 that placed her #780 machine only behind teammate Jeff Ricca (Ricca Autosport Hyundai Elantra N1 TC) and Joey Jordan (FTG Racing Mazda 3).


McNulty held third comfortably at the start of the first race; Ricca initially defended from Jordan but then opened a small gap – having set the fastest lap not only for the TC class but overall. Sally led teammate Ruben Iglesias Jr for the battle for third place in TC, half a second ahead of the sister car. Running on basically the same pace, McNulty couldn't afford any mistake, with Iglesias glued to the back of her Hyundai.


Iglesias intensified the pressure and, on lap 10, Sally was sent into a spin at turn 9 that dropped her to fourth, just ahead of Kris Valdez. Iglesias was promptly handed a drive through penalty for the collision, handing back third to McNulty at the end of lap 11.


Valdez, though, was half a second behind and Sally now had to keep the DRS Honda Civic Type R TC at bay to defend third in the final 15 minutes of the race. Sally chipped away and put a few more tenths in between them – but Valdez wasn't ready to give up. Both set their personal bests on lap 15, separated by hundredths of a second, but Sally held on thanks to a more consistent pace which allowed her to gain a few metres once again.


On the final laps, Sally had to manage the traffic of the overall leaders but she masterfully held the pressure. Once Jordan dropped down the order on the final lap, she crossed the finish line in second place in the TC class, thus securing her third podium of her career in the series and equalling her personal best.


Sally McNulty, Ricca Autosport, 2024 TC America, Sonoma
Photo credits: MotorSportMedia | Halston Pitman

On Sunday, McNulty had another chance to add more points to her tally, although she would have to charge back from fifth in class on the grid. Jeff Ricca was again on top of the TC field, followed by Ruben Iglesias Jr in the sister car; on the second row, McNulty would have to chase Joey Jordan and Kris Valdez to repeat Saturday's success.


McNulty had a good start and immediately snatched fifth – although Perocarpi made a late move and got ahead of the #780 Hyundai on lap 1, as both had leapfrogged Valdez. The race remained green despite a spin at the start by TCX competitor Mario Biundo, who could rejoin after going off at turn 1.


Ricca again set the overall fastest lap early in the race and caught the back of the TCX field, having soon opened a gap to his closest TC rivals. With steady pace and consistent laps within a few tenths from her best, Sally managed to overtake Perocarpi on lap 4; the driver of the #37 Mini tried to fight back at the chicane one lap later, but McNulty closed the door and held on.


She kept up the pace and, consistently on the 1m53 mark, she could gain some breathing space to Perocarpi. This battle, though, meant that she had lost touch with Jordan ahead, now almost 10 seconds up the road.


On lap 10, she clocked her first lap in the 1:52 bracket – although she then had the recovering Kris Valdez in her mirrors, after the DRS Honda driver had also passed Perocarpi.

With 10 minutes to go, TC leader Jeff Ricca retired after his car caught fire: the driver was luckily soon out of the car unharmed and the safety car was deployed.


Now up to third in class, Sally McNulty had the chance to step once again on the podium – and indeed the race ended under caution, handing TC class victory to Ruben Iglesias Jr, ahead of Joey Jordan and Sally McNulty.


Following an outstanding performance on Saturday, Sally kept momentum and secured her fourth podium in TC America with a remarkably consistent run that was further proof of her progress behind the wheel.


"Came into this weekend feeling the most confident I ever have," Sally told us after the weekend. "Typically Sonoma is my least favorite track but on the schedule because it’s always the first race of the season, I’m always stepping foot into a new race car, and shaking off the off season jitters."


"But Ricca Autosport gave me a great car and was very confidence inspiring", she continued. "This is my best performance at Sonoma to date and I'm looking forward to the rest of the season! Big thanks to all my supporters who make this possible!"


McNulty will resume her TC America campaign at Sebring International Raceway in a month's time for the second double-header, on 3-5 May.


Sally McNulty, Ricca Autosport, 2024 TC America, Sonoma
Photo credits: MotorSportMedia | Halston Pitman

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