LEXINGTON, Ohio (Sept. 24, 2004) – Douglas Peterson, of Bonita Springs, Fla., captured his first National Championship Friday, taking the Formula Mazda class win at the 2004 SCCA National Championship Runoffs® Presented by Kohler at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Ernest Bocchino, of Delray Beach, Fla., and Robin Nicholas, of Haymarket, Va., completed the top three.
Driving the No. 78 3 Dimensional Services/Urgent Design & Manufacturing Formula Mazda, Peterson drove to his first SCCA Runoffs win following a 12th place finish at the Petit Le Mans STAR Mazda race earlier in the day in Braselton, Ga. Starting on the pole, Peterson was passed by Nicholas and Bocchino at the start. Entering the esses on lap three, the leaders went three-wide, with Peterson retaking the lead under breaking. Running with a clear track in front of him, Peterson posted the fasted lap of the race, setting a new lap record of 1:26.803 (93.647 mph). At the checkered flag, he had captured the National Championship by 8.631 seconds and an average speed of 90.589 mph.
“I was following the leaders and they went left, so I went right,” said Peterson about his pass for the lead. “It was dirty on the inside but we were able to get around the second place car. Then I braked very late and got past the leader for first. After that I just had to concentrate on doing my job and maintaining the pace.”
Defending Champion Chris Schanzle, of Damascus, Md., and Fabio Castellani, of Streamwood, Ill., 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=156