Andretti, Henriksen reflect on ECC's successful Trans Am return

Images courtesy Trans Am

Andretti, Henriksen reflect on ECC's successful Trans Am return

Trans Am

Andretti, Henriksen reflect on ECC's successful Trans Am return

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ECC Motorsports had a successful return to the Trans Am Series presented by Pirelii in 2019, fielding A.J. Henriksen in TA2 powered by AEM and Adam Andretti for a partial season campaign in the Trans Am class.

Focusing on the Trans-Am’s Northern Cup, the Illinois-based, Arne and Barbara Henriksen-owned ECC Motorsports team claimed titles in both the TA and TA2 classes.

Acquiring the Pancho Weaver-built Dodge Challenger debuted at mid-season by Boris Said, ECC prepped the car for Andretti to finish the final two races of the season. Under pressure from a stout field in extreme heat, Andretti went on to win at Circuit of The Americas (podium photo above), giving the team what he later called “a burst of energy” realizing that with the win, the team had a chance to win the Trans Am Northern Cup title.

Teammate A.J. Henriksen, meanwhile, would clinch the Northern Cup TA2 crown with two memorable performances, in the Detroit Grand Prix Muscle Car Challenge and at Road America (where he started last, avoided all the first lap incidents, and charged up to fifth on the second lap).

“There have been many memorable moments for us as a team in the years we have worked together,” Andretti remembers. “A few that really stand out to me are AJ and I sharing the podium at New Jersey in my rookie year, plus every win — especially the two at COTA.

“I personally am very proud of the fact that we are the only team and driver combo in Trans Am to have won in every make (Dodge, Chevrolet and Ford) in TA2, and the only combo to have won TA2 and TA at COTA.

“It was instant gratification starting off our partnership with Pancho Weaver with such success (the COTA win),” Andretti continues. “It was a bit of a Hollywood script to us honestly — didn’t seem real in some ways to come out of the box so fast with that car. Our team executed perfectly as well. Every single session that weekend, we ran every single lap without issue which is a huge testament to the build quality of Weaver Racing Concepts and prep of ECC Motorsports.

“It certainly showed the racing world how dangerous this combination is going to be in the future.”

Andretti says the Pancho Weaver-built Challenger will be on the grid under the ECC Motorsports banner in some capacity in 2020, and is looking forward to the new Trans Am season which kicks off Feb. 29-Mar. 1 at Sebring International Raceway.

“We are working very hard to build the partnerships necessary to come out of the gate strong for 2020,” Andretti explains. “Stay tuned for announcements from us this off season.”

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