LEXINGTON, Ohio (Sept. 26, 2004) – Joel Lipperini, of Pittston, Pa., was awarded his second National Championship Sunday, inheriting the Showroom Stock C class win at the 2004 National Championship Runoffs® Presented by Kohler at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course after provisional winner Jim Daniels, of Germantown, Tenn., was penalized one position for a racing incident that resulted in early leader Ryan Ciechanski spinning off. Roger Schorer, of Zanesville, Ohio, was third.
Driving the No. 81 Hankook Tires Honda Civic, Lipperini, who started third, crossed the finish line second behind Daniels. Starting fourth, Daniels got a good jump at the green flag to move into third. After running in tight formation for several laps, he passed Schroer to move into second position. On lap 18, Daniels had caught Ciechanski, and went side-by-side into the Keyhole turn. Making contact, leader Ryan Ciechanski spun off-course, while Daniels took the lead. Daniels was later penalized one position for the contact.
It was Lipperini’s second SSC National Championship. His first came in 2002. It also marked the first-ever win for Hankook Tires.
"I had a bad start. I went backwards at the green flag,” said Lipperini after the race. “Then I just had to put my head down and drive qualifying laps for the rest of the race. I got up to Roger [Schroer] and was stuck behind him for a couple laps. Then I got a clean pass on him, and he was a real gentleman about it. Then Jim [Daniels] and Ryan [Ciechanski] had their "issue" and I was second. My strategy was just to get clear and to keep out of trouble."
John Fernandez, of Rochester, Mich., finished fourth, and Ciechanski, of Sterling Heights, Mich., completed the top five.
Now in its 41st year, the SCCA National Championship Runoffs annually crown the best amateur road racers in North America Champions. More than 700 competitors have gathered this year to battle for 24 class titles this year, with eight races being run each day from Friday through Sunday.
Celebrating its 60th Anniversary, Sports Car Club of America is a 60,000 member motorsports organization that sanctions and promotes grassroots and professional motorsports events of a variety of disciplines, including road racing, autocrossing, road rally and performance rally.
Link to story: http://www.scca.com/News/News.asp?Ref=168