PMRA Championship is Final Justice

After losing 2011’s PMRA Pro Mod season points championship by a mere and controversial single point margin…..Whitby Ontario’s Eric Latino has earned some apparent final justice……

The 4th year Pro Modified racer along with his very talented supporting cast have prevailed to win PMRA’s 2012 Championship title and deservingly so.  Eric’s “Team Green” secured that after a frantic high energy event held over the past Labour Day Holiday weekend at Grand Bend Motorplex.

Eric Latino is the 2012 PMRA Champ!

Driving his supercharged Chevy Camaro, which is co-owned by Anne and Rob Sporring, Latino, was able to wrestle away that title from perennial and multi-time series champion Bruce Boland.  All that came during that circuit’s season-ending “double header” event.  After placing runner-up in a rain-deferred makeup event on Saturday, Latino knew exactly what had to happen in the series finale on Sunday.

“I went into that race knowing I had to qualify #1 – win the race – and that Bruce Boland had to qualify 3rd or less and lose in the first round,” Eric reported. “As fate would have it — all that played out so that the final round on Sunday was a race for both the event win and the season championship.”

With the pressure cooker on high – Eric and his team delivered a very telling final round knock out blow at 6.029 secs (low ET of the event) to defeat Jay Santos (the Saturday event) winner.  For his team that secured the 2012 title by two points over Boland.

“Last year’s title chase was disappointing for us and included some controversy with details that I can’t really get too deep into,” Eric added.  “So all that does make this (2012) Championship sweeter for me.”

Eric’s PMRA year did in fact feature a relatively slow start before the team really found their stride a couple of events in.  After that they were quite dominate from a performance perspective for most of the remaining season.

Eric with PMRA Founder & Director Bruce Mehlenbacher

“We began the season with a new engine program and the car had so much more power (+280 HP from 2011) that it was tricky on some of the surfaces we run at,” Eric explained.  “We were actually making too much power.  So we switched the car back to our older engine combo and that made the car more consistent.  We tried to stay with our game and run in the 6.0 secs bracket and not try to set the world on fire. We ran our car in NHRA legal trim but with the blower spinning at 20%.”

Eric was quick to cite all of his supporting staff and valued sponsorship backers as the real reason for the title success.

“This would not have been possible without Rob and Anne Sporring,” he affirmed.  “They helped to give us the equipment and the supercharger that made the difference. All of the crew, led by crew chief and tuner Paolo D’Alimonte are the reason this happened.   And Peter Olin is really the unsung hero.  That guy is incredible with what he does on the car behind the scenes — which is pretty much everything.”

Eric, who is President and CEO of Global Emissions Systems Inc. (GESi®), was also extremely thankful for the continued support of his primary sponsors Vibrant Performance, Quality Plus Compressors, NGK Spark Plugs, Hoosier Tires and Pro Fuel Systems.

While Eric is very satisfied, pleased and proud with his PMRA Championship – there is no doubt that this title win has wet his appetite for a bit more in Pro Mod class racing.

Eric’s “Team Green” was very satisfied with their PMRA Championship run — but may be looking for more in 2013

“I have nothing but respect for the PMRA circuit, it’s racers and management,” Eric added.  “But we have this car running so well.  Al Billes has been suggesting to me that we should run it at some NHRA and ADRL Pro Mod events.  And I think we have developed as a team to a point that we need to go there and answer some questions for ourselves.  I personally want very much the opportunity to run over there against the really big dogs.  I know our car is capable of 5.7 secs runs on a good track — so in 2013 we will most definitely be crossing over for some NHRA races.”

Editors Note:  The Toronto Star ran a very nice story recently on Eric’s 2012 season – you can view that: HERE

Posting by:  Bruce Biegler

Photos by:  Bruce Biegler & Brennan Shortall