Photo Credit: HeavyThrottle.com and FRSport.com
As of press time, 220 people from across the country (and a few from Canada) have registered for the 2017 Fontana ProSolo, to be held March 31-April 2 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. With this being only the second ProSolo of the season, points are still very much up for grabs as competition gets started out on the west coast. With weather forecasts predicting sunny and 80 degree days, we can expect excellent running conditions for all competitors. Be sure to watch all the live results at sololive.scca.com.
Currently tied for the largest class at the event with 17 participants, STR is ready to roll with their tops down (excluding Alden Rush, bringing his e36 M3 to the party). This class has some serious competition with 2016 STR ProSolo Champion James Yom defending against Mike Yanese, Jason Munchhoff, Kevin Dietz, Ken Motonishi, and Ron Bauer. My wildcard pick is Matt “cool story bro” Ales who is co-driving Yanese’s S2000.
There are plenty of other well-subscribed classes with full fields, including B-Street (12), C-Street (12), E-Street (16), Street Touring Extreme (15), and Classic American Muscle (17). CAM, with its wide street tires and rumbling V8’s, features Chad Ryker in CAM-T, who will likely be the target coming off his first place finish in the San Diego Match Tour. Let’s see if his 68’ Camaro can hook up on the line against Chris Cox in his 2015 Ford GT350R.
While not as loud as CAM, Street Touring Extreme will provide some of the top racing this weekend with another line up of multi-time National Champions. 2016 STS ProSolo Points Champion Jeff Wong has switched to a BRZ and looks to lead this 15-car field, but… Jonathan
E-Street looks to be a Miata vs MR2 battle, which may provide some “comes from behind announcing” as the MR2’s launch well but the Miata has balance. 2016 E-Street ProSolo Champion Paul Russel will be the man to beat, with Michael Heinitz close behind coming off his win in the SD Match Tour.
C-Street features an interesting battle of 11 Miata’s and 1 RX-8. The funny thing is, I think the RX-8 will win. Even though the car is 13 years old, it is being driven by Kenton Koch who is usually zipping around in a Lemans Prototype or an MX-5 cup car. Mixing it up will be 2016 CSL National Champion Deana Kelly, Jeffery Bandes, and Brian Coulson.
If you’re looking for the fastest raw time of the event, look no further than R1. For those competitive types keeping score, this will be the sixth class we’ve listed so far that will provide outstanding racing. 2016 ProSolo Points Champion Tom Ellam vs “the fastest car at Nationals” (piloted by Marshall Grice) vs Jeff Kiesel who has won so many ProSolo Championships that new rules seem to follow him. My wildcard for R1 is Jonathon Clements who won the 2016 ProSolo Finale.
There are so many fast Ladies competing in this year’s ProSolo it’s hard to know where to start. At the top will be L1 with 2016 Ladies Pro Solo Super Challenge Points Champion Christine Grice looking to add yet another ProSolo win to her record. Kencey Christopher is now driving the A-Mod so watch carefully as she settles into the fastest solo machine. In L2, Kristen Acharya will have a challenge fending off co-driver Barbara LeRoy-Boehme. With 11 entries and no less than seven National Champions in L3, it will be an exciting group to watch. Annie Gill and Nicole Wong will have to be at the top of their game if they want to ahead of the other quick drivers in this group.
R2 has some well-known cars with Andy McKee in his Blue FD rx-7, Paula Baker in her Miata, and Nick Bjoin in the Orange 328i. New to R2 with the conversion from ESP to CP is John Hogan’s Mustang GT with co-driver Brian Peters. This class is too close to call, but if it isn’t Brian Peters it might be Justin Moore hooking up with the AWD launches in his Subaru Impreza STI.
Last Year in D-Street it was almost spec Subaru WRX, but this year I'm looking forward to see how Mark Scroggs can do in his Chevy Camaro. Will Todd Cameron or your 2016 CAM-C winner Brett Madsen be able to take their eco-boost mustangs to the top?
A-Street, G-Street, and H-street all have four in class and may all be put together in a Bump class. Which means I will have to break out my calculator to see what’s what. It does make for interesting match ups, say Michael Parker (GS) in his Volkswagen GTI vs Scott McHugh in his 2013 Honda Accord.
In the R-Comp Bump, we should see perennial favorite Tom Berry is his Evo rise to the top. If SM is bumped in then there will be a couple quick Subaru’s with Peter Bollenbecker and Greg McCance in the running.
With the Porsche Cayman S now in B-Street let’s see what Tom Tanquary can do against Ryan Clark (coming all the way from Calgary, Canada).
In BSP it will be 2016 ProSolo National Champion Anthony Porta vs Pirelli World Challenge Driver Tony Rivera.
In Super Street watch for 2016 National Champion Scott Fraiser to lead the field with Monty Pack and Charles Kim rounding out this Porsche GT3 field.
In STU, check out Bryan Hietkotter on a break from his regularly scheduled races to burn some rubber in his 350z. In SMF, Bret Norgard has his Acura TL dialed-in off his recent win at the SD Match Tour. Adrian Cardenas will have to push hard in the Ford Focus ST if he wants to win.
And that folks, is why I love racing ProSolo’s. Make no mistake, there will be some intense racing coming up and if your quick you might be able to snag one of the remaining 30 spots as registration closes on March 28th, 2017