Liam Dwyer welcomes doctor who performed extensive surgeries on his legs.
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y.—Freedom Autosport returns to racing this weekend at Watkins Glen, kicking off four races in just six weeks, and the team will have some special guests there to cheer them on in round four of the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge Series.
The team is excited to welcome Dr. Jonathan Forsberg, the orthopedic oncologist who has operated on both of Liam Dwyer’s legs numerous times following an IED explosion in Afghanistan. Dwyer credits Forsberg with saving his right leg, and this will be the first time Forsberg has seen Dwyer race the No. 26 Semper Fi Fund Mazda MX-5 along with Andrew Carbonell.
Britt Casey, Jr., will reunite with Matt Fassnacht in the No. 27 TRUMPF Mazda MX-5. The two previously drove together at Circuit of the Americas in 2014. Fassnacht has been enjoying an outstanding 2017 season in Pirelli World Challenge TCA. In six races, he has driven his Mazda MX-5 to two wins, one second and three third-place finishes. His season to date also includes two poles, a new track record at Virginia International Raceway and a front-row start in five out of six rounds. Freedom Autosport will be hosting guests from two sponsors for the No. 27 Mazda, including TRUMPF, Inc. and Cushman-Wakefield.
Stevan McAleer and Chad McCumbee have several reasons to like Watkins Glen. They won the ST class there in 2015. Last year, McAleer and McCumbee finished fourth in the No. 25 ModSpace/Spartan Cargo Trailers Mazda MX-5. It is also the home track for McAleer, who lives in Putnam Valley, N.Y.
The race at Watkins Glen will get underway on Saturday, July 1, at 2:25 EDT. It will be broadcast live via IMSA.com and the IMSA app.
Freedom Autosport Quotes
Mazda is kind enough to bring Dr. Forsberg and his family to the race so I can show him what I can do thanks to him saving my legs. It’s a small way for me to say thank you to him. Watkins Glen tends to be a good track for us. It’s an old-school track and I love going to those, and hopefully we can get a top-five finish out of it.
It’s exciting to have Dr. Forsberg with us this weekend. To have anyone who was part of Liam’s recovery at the track with us, and for me to be a part of getting to show them how much progress he’s made, is really cool. Watkins Glen is one of my favorite tracks on the schedule, so I always go into it with high hopes. It also marks the point in the season that we kick into high gear.
Britt Casey, Jr.:
Matt and I co-drove at Circuit of the Americas in 2014, and it was a crazy race: it started raining 45 minutes in, and it poured, and we had to both suffer through that. We joked that this is our comeback after that race! Matt does a lot of MX-5 racing, so he knows the car really well, and we’re excited about driving together again.
I can’t wait to get back in the seat with Britt as co-driver and run with high-quality friends and teammates Liam, Andrew, Stevan and Chad. Being part of Freedom, a team that recognizes the contributions of our armed services, is a huge bonus. The MX-5 is a fantastic racecar for Watkins Glen, my favorite track! This will be the sixth different MX-5 I will race in 2017.
I always look forward to Watkins Glen, and it is a place where Stevan and I have visited victory lane. We had a very good ModSpace Mazda last year but lost ABS before halfway, and we were not able to get the win we thought we could have gotten. Hopefully we can have a solid weekend and move into the summer stretch of events with momentum.
Watkins Glen is very important since it’s my home track, and I’ve had two wins there in a Mazda. I usually get big support for this race, so I hope to get good results for the hometown fans. We had a tough race at Sebring, which is usually good for us, so we’re going in with the mindset that we want to get back on the podium—it’s long overdue. I think the ModSpace Mazda will be competitive, and Chad and I are excited.
William Mann, Vice President of Motorsports for ModSpace:
This will be an exciting week at Watkins Glen. Watching Chad and Stevan go for yet another win at this historic track makes this event special. The team has a history of strong performances on this circuit, and they are determined to have a top finish.
ABOUT FREEDOM AUTOSPORT
Since 2008, Freedom Autosport has been a major force in the ST class of the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge Series, proving the might of the Mazda MX-5s. Between their inaugural season in 2008 and 2016, Freedom Autosport earned 15 wins. Freedom Autosport is named in honor of the men and women of the U.S. military who defend our freedom, and the team is a proud supporter of the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund. Keep up with the team on Facebook and Twitter.
ABOUT MAZDA MOTORSPORTS
Mazda Motorsports boasts the most comprehensive auto racing development ladder system of any auto manufacturer in the world. The Mazda Road to 24 program offers a number of scholarships to advance drivers up the sports car racing ladder, beginning with the Global MX-5 Cup series and culminating with the Mazda Prototype team. The Mazda Road to Indy is a similar program that includes Mazda-powered categories of USF2000, Pro Mazda and Indy Lights. In grassroots road racing, more Mazdas race on any given weekend in North America than any other manufacturer. Mazda is also the title sponsor of the renowned Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif. Follow all of the latest news at MazdaMotorsports.com, @MazdaRacing on Twitter, and MazdaMotorsports on Instagram and Facebook.
ABOUT THE SEMPER FI FUND
The Semper Fi Fund provides urgently needed resources and lifetime support for wounded, critically ill and injured members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families. Case managers from the Semper Fi Fund work one-on-one with service members and veterans in order to understand and support their individual needs right now and throughout their lifetime. We keep our overhead low so our impact on the lives of service members and veterans is greater. The Semper Fi Fund is one of only three veteran charities to receive an “A+” rating from The American Institute of Philanthropy and a four-star rating from Charity Navigator. For more information visit www.semperfifund.org.
TRUMPF Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the TRUMPF Group. Dedicated to serving the manufacturing needs of the American, Canadian and Mexican markets, TRUMPF is currently the largest manufacturer of fabricating equipment and industrial lasers in North America. We offer our customers innovative, high-quality products and solutions in the areas of sheet metal processing, laser-based production processes and electronic applications. Find TRUMPF online at www.us.trumpf.com and on Twitter as @TRUMPFInc.
ABOUT CUSHMAN & WAKEFIELD
Cushman & Wakefield is a leading global real estate services firm that helps clients transform the way people work, shop, and live. The firm’s 43,000 employees in more than 60 countries provide deep local and global insights that create significant value for occupiers and investors around the world. Find Cushman & Wakefield at cushmanwakefield.com.
Modular Space Corporation (ModSpace), based in Berwyn, Pa., is the largest U.S.-owned provider of office trailers, portable storage units and modular buildings for temporary or permanent space needs. Building on 50 years of experience, ModSpace serves a diverse set of customers and markets—including commercial, construction, education, government, healthcare, industrial, energy, disaster relief, franchise and special events—through an extensive branch network across the United States and Canada. For more information, visit www.ModSpace.com or http://Blog.ModSpace.com.
ABOUT SPARTAN CARGO TRAILERS
Spartan Cargo Trailers, LLC is located in Alma, Ga., and is a wholesale manufacturer of cargo and utility trailers. Manufacturing the industry’s very-best-quality trailers, Spartan Cargo Trailers provides the widest range of products in the industry including common utility/work trailer, a race car hauler, concession stands, restroom units with options like observations decks, hydraulic lifts, audio/visual equipment or something new and straight out of the box. Simply put, if you can imagine it, we can build it. Spartan Cargo Trailers offers as a standard: fifteen exterior colors, with single and tandem axles, radial tires, screw-less exteriors and awnings just to name a few. With the finest customization department in the industry, Spartan Cargo Trailers has designers that engineer trailers to suit customer wants and needs. https://www.facebook.com/Spartan-Cargo-Trailers-LLC-1686537238299528/