Will Kristina Esposito follow in the footsteps of, and perhaps surpass, Guy Vaughan?
Above: (Left) Kristina Esposito behind the wheel of the TLM Racing BMW 325, (Right) TLM Racing BMW on the starting grid
On the weekend of August 10-11, 2019, 17 year-old Mamaroneck resident and high school honor student, Kristina Esposito, competed as a driver in the Tire Rack ChampCar Endurance Series Race at Virginia International Raceway. She was part of the team of drivers along with Jeronimo Guzman, T.O. Johnson, David Leira, Skip McCusker and David Tuaty, along with crew members Michael Irion, Ignacio Hernandez and Patricia Shields. With sponsorship from TLM Racing, Infantry Time Instruments and Shift Up Now, Kristina and her teammates brought their 1993 BMW 325 home in 1st place in the EC Class, completing 476 laps in the course of the 24 hour endurance race.
Above: (Left) Kristina Esposito and TLM team owner David Tuaty. (Right) TLM Racing team members before the start.
One hundred and fourteen years earlier, on a comparable summer weekend of June 23-24, 1905, another Westchester County teenager from another sound shore community, 18 year old New Rochelle high school graduate, Guy Vaughan, set a new world 24 hour automobile endurance and speed record at Empire City Raceway in Yonkers, NY. Now part of MGM’s casino and harness racing facility, Empire City regularly hosted auto racing events between 1900-1907. Vaughn covered a distance of 1,015.8 miles over the 24 hours. Vaughn who went on to finish third in Westchester’s 1908 Briarcliff Trophy Race and served as the Honorary Referee for the 1941 Indianapolis 500, became president and CEO of the Curtiss-Wright Aircraft Corporation. See link below for coverage on Guy Vaughan and early NY Metro area racing
Driving the #810 TLM BMW 325 for roughly 2 hour shifts, managing just two, 2-hour naps during the long night, and capturing the win, Kristina continues to burnish her racing bona fides. While still a high school student with one year of studies remaining, this 2nd degree Tae Kwon Do black belt continues to develop in both skill and confidence. Recently signing-on with the all-women racing team, Shift Up Now, Kristina joins with some highly skilled and accomplished female racers including Pippa Mann and Shea Holbrook.
TLM team owner and fellow driver David Tuaty summed up the race this way. “What an amazing race! TLM Racing’s BMW 325 performed wonderfully. It was a pretty trouble free race, we did have a few off track excursions but the drivers handled them like pros.”
Kristina’s racing career got its start at the age of 7 when she began racing go-karts and where she accumulated multiple indoor league wins. In fact. MetroSports Magazine first encountered Kristina in an indoor kart series at Grand Prix New York competing against Aurora Straus who is now racing professionally, Josh Green who is moving up in the open wheel racing circuit, and her brother, Nicholas Esposito. At age 14, she enrolled in the Skip Barber Racing School and received her Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) license when she was 15 years old. She joined the New Jersey Motorsports Park (NJMP) Drivers Club and bought a Mazda Miata ITA class racecar. She participated in a number of SCCA and National Auto Sports Association events. Kristina finished 4th place in her first two SCCA races. She soon won 1st place in her class in an SCCA Regional Race and then won 1st place in her class in a solo 6-hr leg of SCCA’s Devil in the Dark in October 2018. See links below for prior MetroSports racing issues and articles.
Above: Kristina Esposito flanked by NASCAR's FDNY Racing owner Jim Rosenblum (left) and former Mamaroneck Village mayor, Norman Rosenblum in front of the #28 FDNY Racing truck.
Recognized as a hometown hero by one who knows both Kristina and racing very well. "Kristina Esposito” noted Norman Rosenblum, former Mayor of Kristina's home town Village of Mamaroneck "is a seasoned race car driver since she was seven years old whose experience and ability belies her age as a senior in high school. I have been fortunate in being directly involved in NASCAR Truck series Jim Rosenblum/FDNY #28 team, the America's Cup, Courageous Challenge team in Australia and confidently see Kristina as a high level competitor, team member and unlimited in success for her future as a championship level driver."
After the race, Kristina told MetroSports Magazine that, “I am thrilled my team took first place in our class, with Shift Up Now’s partner TLM USA Racing. Every crew member and driver was so supportive of each other. We wouldn’t have won without all of us working together. The Virginia International Raceway Track was fun, exciting and challenging, especially at night in the dark! I look forward to doing it again!”
With her driving prowess, winning ways, outgoing personality, promotion of stopbullying.com, and joining the team of Shift Up Now, Kristina is becoming a role model for other young women, even very young women.
The TLM Racing team would like to thank our new sponsor, Infantryusa.com watches and extend the teams discount code to all your readers. https://infantryusa.com/ Type in TLM 10 and check out.
Expect to see more of Kristina in upcoming issues of MetroSports Magazine. www.MetroSportsMag.com
See all our full issues at www.MetroSportsMag.com