Sebring Majors Closes With Weekend’s Closest Finish

SEBRING, Florida (January 17, 2016) – Though it’s just the third week of January, the Southeast Conference SCCA Majors Tour is 40 percent complete after Sunday’s Round Four of 12 at Sebring International Raceway. 

Though storms and rain loomed in the forecast, the full day of 14-lap races ran on a dry track all day long.

The kicker came to end the weekend, with a Formula F finish so close that the electronic timing was fooled by the result. Peter Dempsey, a winner in Indy Lights competition in the Mazda Road To Indy, crossed the finish line with just the nose of his No. 5 BGR/Me, Myself and the Wife Piper DL07/Honda ahead of Cole Morgan’s No. 05 Swift DB-6.

Though live timing said otherwise, a visual confirmation had Dempsey as the race winner.

Just two groups prior in the larger open wheel class, Ryan Norman scooted his No. 98 K-Hill Motorsports/Flipside Swift 016/Mazda away from the group to win overall and in Formula Atlantic.

In a bit of revenge from the back and forth battle they served up on Saturday, Casey Gunnell crossed the stripe first to take the win in Super Touring Lite. Gunnell’s No. 16 Round 3 Racing Toyota Celica battled for the second consecutive day with Bob Beede’s No. 28 Bill Fenton Motorsports/Wheeler Auto Honda Civic, but this time had enough for Beede and took home the trophy on Sunday.

To win a Spec Miata race this weekend at Sebring, a driver had to be better than 62 other racers. On Sunday, Danny Steyn methodically drove his No. 39 Adept/Rossini/OPM/Traqmate/Traqgear Mazda Miata at the front of an eight-car breakaway. Lap after lap, Steyn clicked off laps, dropping the contenders from eight, to six, to three, and eventually a two-car dual on the final lap with Todd Lamb’s No. 84 Atlanta Speedwerks/Speedshift Transmissions Miata.

Lamb tried to close up the gap through Turn 17, but Steyn had just enough to get the drive through the corner and to the stripe for the win.

The next U.S. Majors Tour event is the Western Conference opener at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., January 29-31. The Southeast Conference returns to action February 27-28 at NOLA Motorsports Park in a dual event with the Mid-States Conference.

SEBRING, Florida – Provisional race results from Sunday’s Southeast Majors Tour Round Four from Sebring International Raceway, with Class: Name, Hometown and Car.

American Sedan: Al Wheatley, Linden, N.C., Chevrolet Camaro
B-Spec: Chi Ho, Orlando, Fla., Honda Fit
E Production: Kip Van Steenburg, New Smyrna Beach, Fla., Porsche 944
F Production: Ken Kannard, Sebring, Fla., Mazda Miata
H Production: Ron Bartell, Madbury, N.H., MG Midget
Formula 500: Jeremy Morales, Indianapolis, Ind., Scorpion S1/Rotax
Formula 1000: Joel Haas, Jupiter, Fla., Piper DF5
Formula Atlantic: Ryan Norman, Aurora, Ohio, Swift 016/Mazda
Formula Continental: Robert Allaer, Lithia, Fla., Van Diemen RF02/Ford
Formula Enterprises: Paul Schneider, Charlotte, N.C., Formula Enterprises/Ford
Formula F: Peter Dempsey, Buffalo Grove, Ill., Piper Dl07/Honda
Formula Vee: Laura Hayes, Fletcher, N.C., Protoform P2/Volkswagen
GT-1: Simon Gregg, Ponte Vedra, Fla., Chevrolet Corvette
GT-2: Randy Kindsland, Whittier, N.C., Chevrolet Corvette
GT-3: Bill McGavic, Arcadia, Fla., Mazda RX-7
GT-Lite: Michael Kamalian, Marietta, Ga., Mazda Miata
Prototype 1: Jacek Mucha, Highland Beach, Fla., JMS 016/Mazda
Prototype 2: Richard Colburg, Northbrook, Ill., Nostendos
Super Touring Lite: Casey Gunnell, Ponte Vedra, Fla., Toyota Celica
Super Touring Under: Cameron Maugeri, Ormond Beach, Fla., Lotus Exige
Spec Miata: Danny Steyn, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Mazda Miata
Spec Racer Ford: Scott Rettich, Columbus, Ohio, Spec Racer Ford
Spec Racer Ford Gen 3: Kerry Jacobsen, Deland, Fla., Spec Racer Ford
Touring 1: Steve Kent, Fredrick, Md., Ford Mustang
Touring 2: Tim Kezman, Franksville, Wis., Porsche 911
Touring 4: Lance Stewart, Coconut Grove, Fla., Mazda RX-8

Image: Ryan Norman drove to the Formula Atlantic win on Sunday at Sebring.
Credit: Mark Weber