BFGoodrich Tires Super Tour Caps Wet Majors Weekend
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (March 11, 2012) – Despite weather fit only for ducks at Texas World Speedway, round two of the BFGoodrich Tires SCCA Super Tour and the opening weekend of the Sports Car Club of America Club Racing Majors program capped Sunday afternoon with close racing.
In addition to the BFGoodrich Tires Super Tour, the Texas Two Step Double National hosted by the Lone Star Region, was also the opening round of the Club Racing Majors program, the pilot program held in the middle states in 2012 designed to cluster competition and provide a Championship for those in the heartland.
A morning rain storm washed out qualifying for every group except the opening Spec Miata class, so the hardworking bunch of corner workers were put back on course in time for 30 minute races to begin around 1:00 p.m. local time.
Once under way, Spec Miata wasted no time in putting on an entertaining show. The field ran under yellow for the middle part of the race to clear cars who had run off course and been stuck in the mud, but restarted with two laps to go.
Craig Berry held the point with one to go in the No. 29 Mazda Miata, but Blake Clements’ No. 27 Miata charged past the No. 75 Miata of Aaron McSpadden in turn four for second place. Clements closed the gap to Berry, and in turn 14 of the 15-turn course, splashed his way past Berry and onto the banking for the lead.
Clements’ pass broke Berry’s momentum enough for McSpadden to get side by side on the banking of the Texas World Speedway oval as the two raced for the checker, with McSpadden moving around Berry by the smallest of margins for the runner-up position.
Group 2 for the big bore machines went 14 laps for the overall win by Eric Galerne’s No. 37 Dodge Viper ACRX in STO, but the top class battle came in Touring 2. Richard Baldwin held a lead through most of the race, but, as the track began to dry slightly, Steve Coleman’s No. 25 Ford Mustang was closing the gap. Baldwin held the lead in his No. 2 Nissan with Coleman charging, closing to the rear of Baldwin in Turn 8. Pushing hard, Coleman’s Mustang drifted through the corner nearly sideways, letting Baldwin sneak away for a 1.435-second win.
David Fershtand (GT-1), Toby Grahovec (Showroom Stock B), Charles Barnes (GT-2), Eric Ritchie (American Sedan), and James Speights (GT-3) were class winners in Group 2.
The open-wheel machines got into the act with Group 3, where Stuart Rettie in the No. 21 Formula Mazda and Alan McCallum in the No. 19 Formula Mazda battled it out early in the race. McCallum ran off course in Turn 13, leaving Rettie alone to cruise to a 34.327-second victory. McCallum battled back to finish second, passing the No. 16 Formula Mazda machine of Russ Lindemann on the 15th and final lap of the 30-minute race.
Jacek Mucha (C Sports Racing), Scott McQueen (Formula Enterprises), Gregory Byrne (Formula Atlantic), Bill Johnson (Formula Continental), and Marvin Hodges (Sports 2000) were all class winners in the group.
Denny Stripling (No. 4 Spec Racer Ford) won Spec Racer Ford, which was alone in Group 4, followed by Keith Verges’ No. 69 Spec Racer, but neither made it easy. Battling for the lead on the opening lap, both drivers spun and avoided getting stuck, and continued. Both rejoined deep in the 16 car field and worked their way to the front, catching up by lap 5.
Both pulled away after a one-lap caution on lap seven, with Stripling steadily growing his lead to a 4.871-second win at the conclusion of the 13 lap race. Johnny Meriggi, who led early in the race in the No. 7 machine, held off Kevin Bosien’s No. 4 for third place.
The track was drying in a number of places by the time Group 5 got the green flag for their 30-minute race. With two laps to go, Jesse Prather’s No. 34 Mazda MX-5 moved around Matt Reynolds’ No. 71 Mazda Miata for the overall and E Production lead. With Reynolds giving chase, Prather hung on for a 0.619-second win.
Eric Prill turned the fastest lap of the group on his way to an F Production win in the No. 7 Mazda Miata, with a time of 2:05.942 (82.895 mph). Joe McClughan (STU), James Rogerson (HP), Trey Stiles (STL) and James Place (SSC) were also class winners.
The weekend concluded with a runaway win for Alex Ardoin’s No. 2 Sauce Svm1 Ford, who cruised to a 1:33.890 win. Charles Hearn drove his No. 37 Vortech to second overall and first in Formula Vee, with C.J. McAbee’s No. 15 AJ’s 2012 Formula 500 third overall and first in class.
Not lost in the weekend was the BFGoodrich Tires Party held for volunteers and competitors and hosted by the region on Saturday night at the Hilton College Station. The party included a $500 cash giveaway to a random driver, won by Scott McQueen, and $100 prizes to five workers. Chuck Warren, Colton Matocha, Derrick Benzer, Steve Lawrence and Brent McNaul were the lucky workers who earned the prizes.
As part of their contingency program at BFGoodrich Tires SCCA Super Tour events, Hoosier Tire, as the spec tire of the class, gave away two tires each to two Spec Miata drivers. In a random drawing held at victory circle, Matt Reynolds and Andy Rushing took the prize.
The next BFGoodrich Tires SCCA Super Tour and Majors program race is at Hallett Motor Racing Circuit, April 14-15, near Tulsa, Oklahoma.