Round Seven of the Mid-States Conference Championship for the SCCA U.S. Majors Tour was welcomed with great weather at High Plains Raceway for the Colorado Region May Daze weekend.
Five run groups ran brief practice and qualifying sessions before starting the 20-minute sprint races in the afternoon under partly cloudy skies and temperatures in the upper 70s.
Race One for the Spec Racer Ford and Spec Miata classes featured a split start, with the faster SRFs going first.
Polesitter Denny Stripling, of McKinney, Texas, got the jump on fellow Texan Keith Verges and never looked back. While he only led by one second through the race's mid-point, by the finish, Stripling had pushed his No. 4 Lightspeed Motorsports entry to a 3.868-second win over Verges. Richard Stephens, of Bixby, Oklahoma, finished third.
Matt Reynolds, of Fair Oaks, Texas, went flag-to-flag for the Spec Miata win by nearly 13 seconds in his No. 74 Reynolds Brothers Racing Mazda Miata. Keith Slankard, of Lafayette, Colorado, finished second, followed by Russ Lindemann, of Longmont, Colorado.
Reynolds had little time to celebrate his Spec Miata win, as he exited that Mazda and walked to the grid to get into his E Production Mazda Miata, where he scored a second flag-to-flag win in Race Group Two.
Reynolds led the second group in a split start. Up front, Michael Pettiford, of Louisville, Colorado, took his first of two wins on the day overall in the No. 42 GO 4 IT Racing Schools/Hoosier Tire/Hawk Chevrolet Corvette, taking a 4.205-second win over Omaha, Nebraska's Natha Waldbaum.
Aurora, Colorado's Bill Hingston (No. 08 Little Bill Racing/Mazdaspeed Mazda Miata) ran away with the F Production class, as did Jerry Oleson, also of Aurora, in his H Production class Austin-Healey Sprite. Stan Czacki, of Truth or Consequence, New Mexico, won Touring 4 in his No. 00 Whitehead/DGI/Schaaf Auto/BFGoodrich/HPD Acura RSX, setting a new track record in the process. Jon Goodale, of Conifer, Colorado, ran uncontested to win GT-Lite in his No. 04 Mazdaspeed/Hoosier Mazda MX-5.
Group Three polesitter James Stiehr, of Evergreen, Colorado, saw second-starting Rick Payne, of Mission, British Columbia, get the jump on the start to take the lead. That lead was short-lived, as Stiehr drafted past and to the point by Turn Four. As Stiehr slowly pulled away in his No. 5 Carpe Metam Racing/Morgan Adams Piper DF5/Honda, the battle for second place overall and in Formula F was intense.
Payne, David Loken, Reid Hazelton and Bill Kephart battled back and forth for second place for the first 10 minutes before Hazelton, of Burlington, Wisconsin, took the position for good in his No. 23 Colorado Pen.com Van Diemen. Hazelton turned, at that time, the fastest lap of the race on lap six, but Stiehr answered one lap later by another seven-tenths to build on the gap, which was more than nine seconds at the checkered flag. Kephart, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, finished third in his No. 37 Vestal 10F/Honda.
In Formula 500, Jack Walbran, of Saint Louis, Missouri, led Tim Friest, of Leavenworth, Kansas, early, but broke on lap three, leaving Friest to take the win in his No. 36 Hoosier/XTRacing/RodEndSupply KBS Mk VII. Bob Neumeister, of Pueblo, Colorado, led flag-to-flag to win Formula Vee in his No. 94 Hoosier Tire Vortech JM.
Robert Prilika, of Castle Rock, Colorado, led flag-to-flag overall in his No. 25 Porsche of Colorado Springs Porsche 997 GT3 Cup, but was moved to last in class after his car was found to be out of compliance. That promoted Denver's Jim Valdez to the victory, overall and in GT-2, in his No. 27 Valdez Motorsports BMW E46.
Every other class in the Group Four race was a flag-to-flag win for the polesitter, including Tucson, Arizona's James Cantrell ( No. 87 Vintage Exotics Chevrolet Corvette) in GT-1; Anthony Simmers, of Boulder, Colorado in his Super Touring® Under No. 45 RebayReseller.com/Hoosier Volkswagen GTI; Littleton's Jason Ott in his Touring 3 Bimmerhaus/Hoosier Tire BMW Z4 M Coupe; Lenexa, Kansas' Jim Wheeler (No. 20 Hoosier/Wilwood/KC Raceware Pontiac Trans Am) in American Sedan®; Longmont, Colorado's Bob Schader (No. 15 Hoosier Tire/miatacage.com Mazda Miata) in Super Touring Lite and Pettiford in his Touring 1 class No. 41 GO 4 IT Racing Schools/Hoosier/Hawk Chevrolet Corvette.
The final race of the day featured the fastest cars of the weekend, including the Prototype and winged formula classes. Overall and P1 class polesitter Kirk Kindsfater, of Eaton, Colorado, looked to have the race under control until he went off with two laps to go. He rejoined and was able to just old off Christopher Ash, of Centennial, Colo., at the finish in his No. 32 RillTech Speads RS11/Suzuki.
Jose Gerardo, of El Paso, Texas, took the Formula 1000 win in his No. 14 General Labels & Printing LLC Stohr F1000/Suzuki after Jake Latham's Stohr was found to be out of compliance following the race.
Other Group Five winners included Pueblo, Colorado's Doug Stout (No. 19 DS Masonry/Front Range Motorsports Van Diemen Ford) in Formula Continental; Albuquerque's Bruce Gurney (No. 36 Aspen Park Vet Hospital/Goodyear Carbir CS-2/Ford) in P2; Aurora's Dwight Rider in Formula Atlantic®; and Jon Surbeck, of Livermore, Colorado in his No. 17 Wylie Dog Motorsports Formula Enterprises.
On tap Sunday are short morning warm-up sessions, followed by 18-lap feature races, serving as Round Eight of the Mid-States Conference of the SCCA U.S. Majors Tour. Follow all of the action on Twitter @SCCALive1 or live timing at www.scca.com/sccalive.
Class winners from Saturday's SCCA U.S. Majors Tour races at High Plains Raceway, with class, driver, hometown and car.
Class, Driver, Hometown, Car.
American Sedan, Jim Wheeler, Lenexa, Kan., Pontiac Trans Am.
E Production, Matt Reynolds, Fair Oaks, Texas, Mazda Miata.
F Production, Bill Hingston, Aurora, Colo., Mazda Miata.
Formula 1000, Jose Gerardo, El Paso, Texas, Stohr F1000/Suzuki.
Formula 500, Timothy Friest, Leavenworth, Kan., KBS Mk. VII/Rotax.
Formula Atlantic, Dwight Rider, Aurora, Colo., Ralt RT-41.
Formula Continental, Doug Stout, Pueblo, Colo., Van Diemen/Ford.
Formula Enterprises, Jon Surbeck, Livermore, Colo., SCCA Enterprises.
Formula F, James Stiehr, Evergreen, Colo., Piper DF5/Honda.
Formula Vee, Bob Neumeister, Pueblo, Colo., Vortech JM/VW.
GT-1, James Cantrell, Tucson, Ariz., Chevrolet Corvette.
GT-2, Jim Valdez, Denver, Colo., BMW E46.
GT-3, Jim Speights, San Antonio, Texas, Mazda RX-7.
GT-Lite, Jonathan Goodale, Conifer, Colo., Mazda MX-5.
H Production, Jerry Oleson, Aurora, Colo., Austin-Healey Sprite.
Prototype 1, Kirk Kindsfater, Eaton, Colo., Speads RS11/Suzuki.
Prototype 2, Bruce Gurney, Albuquerque, N.M., Carbir CS-2/Ford.
Spec Miata, Matt Reynolds, Fair Oaks, Texas, Mazda Miata.
Spec Racer Ford, Denny Stripling, McKinney, Texas, SCCA Spec Racer Ford.
Super Touring Lite, Robert Schader, Longmont, Colo., Mazda Miata.
Super Touring U, Anthony Simmers, Boulder, Colo., Volkswagen GTI.
Touring 1, Michael Pettiford, Louisvelle, Colo., Chevrolet Corvette.
Touring 2, Michael Pettiford, Louisvelle, Colo., Chevrolet Corvette.
Touring 3, Jason Ott, Littleton, Colo., BMW Z4 M Coupe.
Touring 4, Stan Czacki, Truth or Consequence, N.M., Acura RSX-S.