The next generation in Honda racing
There is a good chance that on any given weekend you can find us at the track racing, testing, or just hanging out.
A few weekends ago we did just that and this time we had a special friend of ours stop by for some testing. We had the fortunate opportunity to sit down with fellow enthusiast and SCCA Pro Racer Tom O’Gorman. You may be unfamiliar with Tom aka TOMO so let us fill you in. TOMO is the driver of the #94 2017 Honda Civic SI that competes in the TCA class of Pirelli World Challenge (PWC). He is also one of the main driving forces behind SCCA track night; a program designed to easily and safely get people on track.
I originally met TOMO a few years back when he was racing a Honda FIT in BSPEC class in PWC. He was a super cool guy and brought a fun and uplifting energy to the paddock. It had been a while since we got to sit down and chat. Let’s check out what TOMO had to say about racing the 10th gen Civic.
How long have you been racing Hondas?
-Since the start of my career. I started auto-x when I was 15 and a half. My first daily was a 97 Civic EX Coupe and I would race that on used race tires that I would buy off my friend. Sometimes I even colored in the cording so I could pass tech and race some more - haha. As I got better others started to offer to let me compete in their Honda's for more experience and seat time. I ended up winning national championships in both a CRX and S2000. After that I started road racing. I went from a 91 EF hatch to a B-SPEC Honda Fit, and now my current SI. So yeah I have been racing Honda's for a long time.
Tell us a bit about your car?
-It’s a 2017 Honda Civic SI coupe. It’s a homologated racecar built off a body on white from Honda Racing then built with a TCA spec kit on it that includes, adjustable Bilsteins, Eibach springs, stock sway-bars, Willwood 6 piston brakes up front, stock rear brakes, and Carbotech pads on all 4 corners. The car is a fully prepared racecar with a full cage, bucket seat, and race harness inside a gutted interior. The engine is relatively stock minus a custom exhaust and custom Hondata Flash Pro Tune.
What do you enjoy about racing the 10th generation Honda Civic (FC3)?
-It’s hands down the best FWD platform that I have ever driven. The car has a ton of mechanical grip allowing it to be very fast and stable in the high speed corners. The turbocharged engine offers lots of torque all throughout the power-band. Having driven lots of FWD cars this one is definitely the funnest and most rewarding one.
This is your first year racing under the Real Time Banner (a top tier pro race team). You may recognize them from piloting two TCR Type R’s this year. Tells us what that is like working with them?
-Racing with them is like a dream come true for me because I have this vivid memory of watching a race in my cousins basement. I remember seeing this really awesome 1997 Integra Type R and I thought it was the coolest car ever and I told myself I want to do that. Turns out that was a Real Time Racing car and now to have the opportunity to be able race alongside them is awesome. The team is super helpful and the guys are great to work with.
Something that I personally am a big fan off and that you are a big part of is Gridlife. Tell us a bit about it. What is it and why do you think it’s so important for the 10th generation Honda enthusiast.
- Gridlife is a motorsports music festival and automotive lifestyle event. Every year they host 2 major festivals and several track day events. The festivals are the best. Throughout the day they run HPDE, time attack, and drifting. Over 200-300 cars get on track at some point. All while this is happening there are car shows, vendors, djs, contests and more. As the track starts to get cold a huge music festival breaks out all night with some big artist like Ludacris and others. I find these events are super important because they help connect the motorsports/automotive lifestyle with pro racing. It shows that you don’t need a full racecar to get on track and that at the end of the day it’s all about enjoying our cars and our friends. Doesn’t matter how or what you do to the car -- we all share that passion.
Alright man LIGHTNING round!!!
You daily a brand new Honda Pilot Elite. Love it or hate it?
-Love it, it’s the most comfortable thing I have ever rode around in.
-First generation Honda NSX.
Thoughts on the new 27WON SI Livery?
- Super cool, looks awesome in person and the graphics are on point.
What car is TOMO racing in the next couple of years?
-Hopefully the new Type R CTR cars. Those things are insane.
How can we follow along with TOMO and all his adventures?
We look forward to working with TOMO again and wish him the best of luck racing. Thanks for tuning in and let’s REDEFINE the Aftermarket.