WATKINS GLEN, N.Y – Uncork New York is a slogan that recognizes the wines produced in the local Finger Lakes region.  Driver Mike Davis has also uncorked something that will be featured in the area this week – his son.

Brandon Davis is the point leader in the SPEED World Challenge Series, which is competing at Watkins Glen International. And it is his father that has given him the chance to be part of the Applied Computer Systems ACS Express Racing Team, co-sponsored by Sun Microsystems. Brandon, the first-year series driver from Huntington Beach, Ca., has been on two poles, won a race (Long Beach) and, most recently, finished second in the three events this season.

“We’re doing pretty well this year,” said Brandon, who will be behind the wheel of the jet black #10 Ford Mustang Cobra with green trim. “I’m pretty proud of how we didn’t have the fastest car the last race (Salt Lake City) but still managed to finish second.”

Those comments are mild-mannered compared to what his father, who drives the vibrant neon yellow and purple #11 Ford Mustang Cobra, expresses.

“Brandon drove the last race like a 35-year old. And he’s only 22,” Mike Davis said. “Because he started so young – he’s been racing for 14 years – he’s got the experience of people older than himself. And yes, I’m very proud of him.”

Watkins Glen will be test for both Davis’ and their team and car. The Ford Mustang has proven to deliver plenty of horsepower but, in the ever-compromising world of racing, it gives up some downforce in the turns to its competitors.

“I like the Watkins Glen track,” Brandon Davis said. “There’s a balance for us here. Our car probably won’t be as great as some of the others in the high-speed turns but on the other hand, it’s a place for good horsepower and that is where we will have an advantage.”

For Mike Davis, there’s another challenge. He’s never seen this track, which is surprising considering his considerable experience.  “I’ve raced in all kinds of series’ all over the US and Canada but have never been to Watkins Glen,” he said. “The main goal is to get out there early for some recon laps on a bike, ATV or rental car. Then in the first practice session I’ll tuck in behind a more experienced guy and find the turning points, breaking points and apexes. In races, I tend to get stronger as the race goes on so I’m looking for a good finish.

Brandon arrives fresh with a college degree in business management from the University of Denver. Finals are completed, though he will miss graduation.  “Sure, it would nice to be there for the ceremony; it’s a once-in-a-lifetime event,” he said. “But I would be even more disappointed if I missed qualifying to go to it.”   

ACS Express is also supported by these associate sponsors: Red Line Oil and Mothers Polish and Wax.