TOPEKA, Kan. (July 22, 2013) – With less than three weeks before the joint season finales of the Northern Conference and the Mid-States Conference Majors Tour, the Championship scenarios have taken shape.
The following, along with who can spoil someone else’s hopes with their own single-race finishes, are those scenarios.
Remember that the Mid-States Conference counts the best seven finishes; In the Northern Conference, the best six finishes count for most classes. Those with a bonus Majors race at the June Sprints (CSR, DSR, S2, SM, SRF, FB, GT1, GT2, GT3 and T1) will count seven.
Northern Conference: five drivers are still mathematically eligible. Scott Schweitzer leads with 91 points, but has already reached his maximum events. Therefore, he’ll be replacing a 10th place finish, and then a seventh place. Andy McDermid (88 points on four wins), Scott Sanda (63 points), and Matt Regan (56 points) can add two more races to their final tallies. Dane Smith is also still alive with 54 points after three strong finishes.
Mid-States Conference: Jim Wheeler has clinched the season-long Championship with six previous wins.
The Northern Conference is wide open, though Joel Lipperini currently leads with 44 points.
Charlie James can clinch the Mid-States simply by scoring a single sixth-place finish at Gateway, regardless of what Mike Asselta does for the rest of the event. James needs a total of 14 points in the weekend to take the title.
C Sports Racing:
Jacek Mucha has an Eastern Conference Formula Atlantic crown already, and holds an 11-point Northern Conference lead in CSR. Mucha needs 34 points to clinch without any help; James French (70 points), Dudley Fleck (54 points) and Jim Downing (46 points) are all still mathematically eligible.
Kirk Kindsfater and Jay Messenger split the Colorado rounds and are locked into a tie at the top of the Mid-States Conference. Lee Alexander (39 points) and Dudley Fleck (38 points) are also still mathematically eligible based on strong performances at Circuit of the Americas.
D Sports Racing:
D Sports Racing is wide open in both Conferences.
In the Northern Conference, Richard Colburn currently holds the lead, with 115 points. He has already completed seven races, however, meaning that only 13 more points are available to him (a drop of his fifth and fourth place finishes). Jon Staudacher (108 points in six races), Ralph Provitz (88 points on four wins), Brian Hall (80 points in four races) and David Locke (77 points in four races) are all still alive.
The Mid-States Conference is open to anyone, as leader Chris Farrell has 44 points.
A whopping nine Northern Conference drivers are still eligible for the EP crown, and most have at least one full race to count before resorting to drops. Lance Loughman leads the way with 94 points in five races, with Joe Moser nearly equal at 88 points when his lowest current finish (13th vs. fifth for Loughman) is factored in. Rob Hummel is next in line with 79 points, followed by Fred Albright and Jason Albright with 77 and 70 points, respectively. Fred Albright has six finishes, but can make up a maximum of 11 points in each race by dropping a pair of ninths.
Matt Reynolds has six wins in the Mid-States Conference E Production battle, and needs just 14 total points to clinch the title over Rick Kosdrosky, even if Kosdrosky wins both races at Gateway.
James Weida controls the Northern Conference in F5, with 91 points. Steven Thompson (79 points), Kris Larsen (78 points), Brian Brothers (73 points), Michael Mueller (63 points) David Lapham (53 points) and Katie Lapham (52 points) are all mathematically eligible, though clearly the odds increase significantly further down the list.
Timothy Friest leads the Mid-States Conference, and needs 26 points to clinch the crown regardless of what anyone else does. Both he and David Vincent (100 points) can count one race prior to drops, while third-place C.J. McAbee (88 points) can score points in both races.
Charles Duncan leads the Northern Conference, with 87 points, though Jacek Mucha (61 points) and both Sedat (57 points) and Ahsen Yelkin (52 points) are mathematically alive. Regardless of what his rivals do, Duncan will win with 19 additional points – the equivalent of a 2nd place finish.
Tyler Hunter and Dwight Rider are separated by just four points in the Mid-States, with Gaston Kearby 10 behind the lead. All are very much in the hunt, as Rider has finished in front of Hunter in the last four rounds.
Four drivers are still involved in the Northern Conference chase, with Brian Novak currently leading the way. Novak has posted finishes in six races – however, he could potentially replace a 10th place finish. His second lowest finish is third. Jeremy Hill (82 points) can count both Gateway events, with Nicholas Varis (81 points) able to count one and potentially replace a seventh-place finish. Second place would clinch the title for Novak.
A sixth-place finish earns the Mid-States crown for James Michael, who leads the class with 94 points. Still in line to inherit the lead with some help are Steve Ott (63 points), John LaBrie (56 points), and Christopher Ash (54 points).
Though Thomas Gaffney holds the lead in the Northern Conference, the championship race is up for grabs as two other rivals sit within five points of the leader’s 71. Jason Bach sits two points back, followed by Robert Allaer, in third. If none of those drivers can capitalize, seven more sit within the 44 point window to remain mathematically eligible.
The Mid-States Conference is just as wide open. Nine drivers, including leader Tex Arnold with, 56 points, are still in contention. Steve Bamford and Barry Gilbert are tied for 2nd with 44 points, as each has scored a pair of wins this year.
Reece Everard has made a late push to try to overtake Scott Rettich for the FE title in the Northern Conference. Rettich won the opening five events to score 110 points, but Everard swept the GingerMan weekend to up his total to 97. Both have counted five races.
Henry Donohoo can clinch the Mid-States Conference with a ninth or better in either race, or 11 points total for the weekend. If he should falter, Curt Harrelson is 34 points back and mathematically alive.
Russell Ruedisueli has one more race available before drops, putting him in great position in the North, with 90 points. Mark Davison also has five current finishes, and sits five points behind the lead. Should they fail to score points, Timothy Kautz (63 points) and Michael Green (50 points) are still alive.
Bill Kephart and Doug Stout are separated by one point in the Mid-States, with both able to count one more race prior to drops. Both will drop a 12th place finish, putting the pair on nearly equal footing. James Stiehr, 14 behind, with 81 points, and John Butkovich, with 60 points, are both in the hunt with help.
A third-place finish wraps up the Northern Conference for Jason Vinkemulder who, with 100 accumulated points already, needs 17 more to clinch the big trophy. Steve Johncock (72 points), Dale Vandenbush (71 points), Thomas Peet (66 points) and Stephen Jenks (60 points) are in position to take advantage of any stumble by the leader.
Defending National Champion Alan McCallum has clinched the Mid-States Conference with five wins.
Kevin Ruck has clinched the Northern Conference four wins, but the Mid-States is a three-way battle that could be settled on the track.
Sam Henry and Eric Prill split their head-to-head battle at COTA and each has two wins and two runner-ups for 82 points. Bill Hingston sits just behind, with 78 points. All three control their own destiny, as a pair of wins for Hingston would give him the tiebreaker.
Still alive but needing assistance are Paul Jensen and Rafer Chambers (67 points each), Neal Frank (53 points), and Curtis Wood (45 points).
Michael Varacins has taken wins in four of the last five Northern Conference events to score 107 points and hold a 12-point lead over Charles McCormick. Both can count one more event before a drop, as can fourth place Brandon Abbott with 82 points. Third running Andrew Abbott will need to replace an eighth and a 10th place finish to increase his 84 points.
Tyler Hunter is in contention for his second championship in the Mid-States, and can clinch with a 14th place finish. Hunter needs just six points to eliminate Mark Felsen, the only other driver still in contention.
A fifth-place finish or better by Dick Greer completes the Northern Conference title; anything worse opens the door just a crack for Al Guadino.
Likewise, a win by David Fershtand, or 20 points total, earns the Mid-States title. If Fershtand does add to his 74 points, Kevin Rich (49 points), Tom Smith (44 points), Michael Lewis (41 points), Simon Gregg (34 points), Scott Walton (33 points) and Richard Grant (30 points) can erase the deficit.
In the Northern Conference, the youth of Trent Hindman holds a 14-point advantage over the experience of Tom Patton. Hindman has four wins this season, and needs 31 points over two days to clinch, regardless of Patton’s finishes.
The Mid-States are wide open, as Mike McGinley, Justin Napoleon, and Bruce Phillips each have a pair of wins and 44 points.
Michael Cyphert has four wins in the North on his way to 107 points, but a string of podiums for David Dobry leaves him in the hunt, with 89 points. Cyphert can clinch with a pair of solid finishes.
Likewise, Jim Valdez holds a slim five point lead, 85-80, over James Speights in the Mid-States. If neither capitalizes, Robert Herman (55 points) and Mike Henderson (41 points) have not yet been eliminated.
Four wins this season has Joel Hipp in the lead up North with 88 points, but Bryan Floyd (74 points) and Robert Bax (69 points) can both capitalize. A single point for Hipp or anything less than a weekend sweep will eliminate William Pintaric Jr., who has 44 points.
In the Mid-States, Kent Prather needs just one point to guarantee a title. If he fails to score, and Jonathan Goodale sweeps the weekend, the two will share the title.
Matthew Brannon’s 85 puts him up by 22 in the Northern Conference, with Aaron Johnson’s 63 points holding him in the hunt. It will take a very poor point weekend by Brannon for Dayle Frame (48 points), Michael Sestili (45 points), and Christopher Crisenbery (41 points) to remain in the hunt, but anything is possible until the checkered flag flies.
Jerry Oleson needs just six points to eliminate Robert Horrell Jr. from contention and take the Mid-States title. If Oleson fails to score a point, he opens the door for Chris Albin and John Ternery, Jr., both of who need a pair of wins to stay alive.
Six drivers are in the hunt for the Northern Conference, but the focus is on Anthony Sleath (78 points), Michael Bautz (68 points), and David Doran (60 points). All need to bobble badly to open the door for John Fergus (41 points), Bart Wolf (37 points) and Jack Donnellan (35 points).
In the Mid-States, Stephen Meyer needs just 14 points – the equivalent of a sixth-place finish – to clinch the title over Chris Helt.
With the top three drivers in the Northern Conference already dropping events, the battle is much closer than it looks on paper. Leader Michael Novak can only replace a 13th and an 8th to increase his 111 points, which is only one better than Bruce Andersen (looking to replace an 11th and a seventh). David Bednarz could take the lead, as one of his current races is an out-of-the-points 22nd, and he’s only nine behind. Erik Stearns (85 points) and Voytek Burdzy (71 points) can count both Gateway races, leaving them in the thick of the hunt as well.
Matt Reynolds can clinch the Mid-States with an eighth-place finish or a 12-point weekend after already scoring 110. Failing that, Jim Drago (77 points), Steven Powers, and Bill Tolley (both with 72) can all track down Reynolds.
Spec Racer Ford:
A ninth-place finish, or 11 points in two days, clinches the Northern Conference for Scott Rettich, but two other drivers are still alive. Adam Gottlieb can replace an 11th and a ninth-place finish to make up his 14-point deficit, and third-place Jeff Beck (104 points) can score one full finish and replace his low of eighth to try to catch up to Rettich.
Just six points clinches the Mid-States for Keith Verges. Anything less than that leaves the door open for Denny Stripling, who is currently 39 points behind.
Super Touring Lite:
The Northern Conference is much closer than it seems, because although Bruce Andersen has scored 100 points, he’s filled his six-race maximum. His potential drops of seventh and fourth leave him at a best case of 115 points. A win and a second-place would clinch, but Kyle Webb (88 points, but dropping a 16th and a fourth), along with Andrew Salzano and John Schmitt (both with 85 points and two full races to count) are in striking distance. Frank Todaro, with 71 points, can count an additional race but will need lots of help.
Colorado’s Bob Schader will raise the trophy in the Mid-States, having already secured the title.
Super Touring Under:
Charles Tobel has two wins, three runner-ups and a third-place finish this season, which leaves few points available to improve on his 118 in the Northern Conference. If Raymond Huffmaster scores a pair of wins, he will overtake Tobel for the title. Huffmaster has 83 points, but has counted just four races so far this season.
Michael Pettiford (85 points) and Anthony Simmers (79 points) are set up to race head-to-head to decide the Mid-States Conference. If each fails to score a point, Thomas Kraft and Jim Taggart (44 each) could supplant Pettiford with a pair of wins.
A win seals the Northern Conference for John Buttermore, who currently has 105 points and needs 21 to wrap the title. Norman Betts (81 points), Danny Kellermeyer (77 points), and Robert Pfeffer (66 points) are all in the hunt if Buttermore fails to take the top spot. Buttermore and Betts both have five of the six allotted races; the remaining three will count both from Gateway.
Michael Pettiford again leads Touring 1 in the Mid-States, but with only 44 points, anyone remains alive.
Nine drivers, led by Todd Napieralski’s 82 points, are mathematically alive in the North. Gary Mason (74 points), William Moore (69 points), and Tom Sloe (66 points) are the closest to Napieralski.
Natha Waldbaum can clinch the Mid-States with 29 points during the weekend. A stumble there opens the door for Pettiford (85 points), and keeps Steven Coleman (66 points) in the hunt.
A total of 12 drivers are still alive in Touring 3 for the two championships, with five in the Northern Conference and seven in the Mid-States. Kevin Boehm is the Northern leader with 82 points, trailed by Luke Wilwert (66 points), Aaron Kaplan (61 points), and Chad Gilsinger and Robert Schmidt (44 points each).
The Mid-States is even deeper behind leader Derek Kulach’s 80 points. Tommy Boileau is right there, with 74 points, and David Muramoto is just a bit further back with 63. The remaining four, starting with Jason Ott and Tom Wickersham, will need a near shutout from the top three to stay in the hunt.
Greg Vandersluis has clinched the North, but both Stan Czacki and Rick Shively are in the hunt in the Mid-States. Czacki has the advantage with only six scored races this season, and needs just eight points to claim victory. Shively can only improve on his low of 4th this season.
Complete points for both the Northern and Mid-States Conferences are available here.