LEXINGTON, Ohio (Sept. 21, 2003) – Collin Jackson finished first in the Grand Touring 3 race just as the western sun was starting its descent toward the horizon Sunday in middle Ohio.
The checkered flag flew as Jackson whizzed by, signaling the end of the 24th race and the end of the 40th SCCA National Championship Valvoline Runoffs® at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
In a week that saw appearances from almost 700 racers, thousands of fans and a Friday morning visit from Tropical Storm Isabel, 24 champions were crowned in recognition for their achievements, along with several other awards that were handed out Sunday evening at the awards banquet.
Among the awards handed out was the President’s Cup, the Runoffs’ most prestigious award, given to the driver who best demonstrates ability, competitiveness and success. The 2003 edition was awarded to first-time Formula Atlantic champion Rennie Clayton, of San Francisco, Calif., who had to rebuild his car with a lot of borrowed parts after crashing his car during qualifying earlier in the week.
Also recognized was 16-year-old Lauren Gurney, of Albuquerque, N.M., who earned Mechanic of the Year honors and Barney Powers, of Lebanon, Ohio, a member of the Cincinnati Region, was honored with the Richland County Sportmanship Award.
On the track, two drivers did what only three others had done before them since 2001. Rennie Clayton and American Sedan champion John Heinricy, of Holly, Mich., both completed the third and final leg of the Chicago Region Triple Crown®, which is awarded to competitors who are able to win the Kohler®/Chicago Region June Sprints®, a home-division point championship and the Valvoline Runoffs. They joined 2001 winners Formula Vee driver Brad Stout, of St. Louis, Mo., and Touring 2 competitor Brian Kelm, of Plymouth, Mich., and 2001 winner, Grand Touring 3 racer Mike Cyphert, of Chagrin Falls, Ohio.
For complete results and in-depth individual race recaps of Sunday’s races and the rest of the 2003 SCCA National Championship Valvoline Runoffs®, visit www.scca.com.