2017 was also a milestone year for the Lux Performance-Viper alliance. In 2005, the team owned by Fred and Cindi Lux was the first to take the V10-powered American machine to the SCCA Run-Offs, in 2007 Lux moved into the Pirelli World Challenge with the Dodge Viper Competition Coupe. In that time, Cindi has been a factory driver for Chrysler first with Dodge Motorsports (2005 – '07), Mopar ('08) and SRT ('12) and Lux Performance oversaw the very popular Dodge Viper Cup "Celebrity" Program from 2010 through 2012. In 2017, she became the first woman to race a Viper at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Cindi raced to victory lane at VIRginia International Raceway (VIR) following an overtaking maneuver so strong it earned the 12-time road racing champion the "Cool-Shirt Cool Move of the Race Award". In addition, she set a new track record at the Virginia track during the event. She also earned the Trans Am TA3 class pole position at Watkins Glen International with a track record setting-lap in America's super car. In the five races she piloted the Viper, the recipient of the Oregon Motorsports Museum Lifetime Achievement Award earned three podiums, a fourth-place and suffered only one mechanical DNF.
Leuenberger made not only his Trans Am debut in 2017, he also made his racing debut. A decade-long veteran of track day activities in Vipers, the resident of Washington state reached out to Lux Performance to oversee the preparations of not only his Viper ACRX but also his driving career. While Fred focused on the mechanical attentions to race in five Trans Am and one in the SVRA Trans Am class races, Cindi honed the entrepreneur's racecraft and career trajectory. As a result, in his first racing season of head-to- head competition of any kind, Leuenberger earned a second-place finish at Indianapolis and five top-five finishes in the ultra-competitive class.
Streimer made an appearance in his hometown Trans Am race at Portland International Raceway (PIR). PIR was on the new-for- 2017 Trans Am West Coast Championship and Lux Performance dusted off his red and yellow Viper for the occasion. The longtime Lux Performance Group driver won the pole position and the race for the TA3 class in his only race in the car since 2016.
2017 marked 30 years of the combination of Fred and Cindi racing together. The pairing has won over 80 races, had more than 160 podium finishes and have sat on the pole position for more than 50 races. That success has garnered twelve road racing championships including the 1999 American Le Mans Series Women's Global GT Series SCCA NorPac T1 Class Championships from 2003 – 2006.
About the 2017 Season | "We didn't back away from a challenge this year, that is for sure. New driver, limited season, some of the fastest and hardest tracks in North America... we took the full baseball bat to the face. But we walked away with a couple of wins, with some podiums, with Dirk learning so much that he isn't even recognizable from where we started. I'll take this one and put it up against any championship season we have had. The guys on the crew and Dirk and Cindi never backed down no matter what the weekend threw at us and we came out winners."
Cindi Lux, Driver, No. 45 Lux Performance Group Dodge Viper ACRX |
About the 2017 Season | "Nobody ever said that we wanted it easy. This was one of the harder seasons we have ever attempted and one of the proudest of my career. We knew the year would be limited on track just because of the approach Dirk, Fred and I decided to take. But, we came away with a lot of success. The Trans Am series remains one of the toughest places you can race. To come in here and not run a full season? Yeah, we knew we were putting our own back against the wall but each time we showed up at the track we left it proud of what we had done and with some good results. The balance of performance caught-up with us about mid-season and that helped. Dirk got quicker and his racecraft became really strong in the end. We always want to win, we always approach it with a victory on our minds but, I'll be honest with you, I don't know if I expected to see us up on the podium once this year, let-alone to stand on the top-step. I knew we would do everything we could but it is just so tight out there it isn't easy if you aren't running every weekend. I am really proud of everything we accomplished as a team. Really gets me excited to get back on track and back in the car next year."