TOPEKA, Kan. (Dec. 12, 2005) – Four more SCCA National Championship Runoffs® races will air on SPEED Channel this weekend, the last full weekend of tape-delayed coverage from the 2005 Runoffs at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. -30-
The races, shown back-to-back, are slated for both Saturday and Sunday, with Showroom Stock C and Formula Vee on Saturday, Dec. 17, followed Dec. 18 by F Production and Grand Touring 3.
Each day’s coverage begins at 1 p.m. (EST).
Things to watch:
• Pete Taylor, of Ortonville, Mich., has never won a Runoffs Championship, but 2005 could be his year after he took the pole position for the Showroom Stock C race with a SSC qualifying record lap time of 1:47.599 in his 2005 Mini Cooper. Hot on Taylor’s heels, however, will be Joel Lipperini, of Pittston, Pa., who has won two of the past three SSC titles (2002, 2004) and will start second in his 2003 Mini Cooper S alongside Taylor. Ryan Ciechanski, of Clinton Township, Mich., ran into technical compliance issues early in the week, but solved them in time to post the fifth-best qualifying mark in the group on the final day of qualifying. Driving his 2000 Honda Civic Si, he too could factor into the final outcome.
• Famous for trains of cars drafting nose-to-tail, Formula Vee year-in and year-out proves to be one of the most exciting races at the Runoffs. Brad Stout, of St. Louis, Mo., has walked away a Runoffs winner three times in his career since 1998, his last title coming in 2002. He will start on the pole and hopes to win his fourth crown, which would complete his run at a second SCCA Chicago Region Triple Crown. Standing in his way, however, are other former FV champions Jeff Loughead, of Darien, Ill. (2004), and Roger Siebenaler, of Williston, Vt. (1999, 2000), will start second and fifth, respectively. Though he will start down the grid from the others in 13th, 2003 Vee champion Steve Oseth, Leesburg, Va., has the moxie to catch a few drafts and bolt right into contention as well.
• John Saurino took home top honors in F Production in 2004, and the Tulsa, Okla.-driver is back for a shot at consecutive titles, starting from the pole position in Sunday’s broadcast. Starting alongside Saurino will be four-time Runoffs winner Steve Sargis, of Frankfort, Ill., who won FP in 2002 (to go with three G Production titles). Mark Hotchkis, of Manhattan Beach, Calif., is looking for his first Runoffs win, and will do so driving the late Robert Kirby’s Porsche 914-4. Kirby’s family asked Hotchkis to drive it this year. Pratt Cole, of Salt Lake City, Utah, who has twice started from the pole (E Production – 2001, ’04), and won three EP titles, will start fifth.
• Don’t adjust your television when you see John Saurino on the pole for a second time Sunday as Saurino will start at the front of the GT-3 immediately following the FP show. After driving an MG Midget in FP, Saurino will next slide behind the wheel of a Nissan 240SX and take on the likes of Wolfgang Maike, of Santa Barbara, Calif., who won GT-3 in 2001, and Terry Watson, of Pierrefonds, Quebec, who is starting third while in search of his first victory.
Previously aired replay schedule (all times Eastern):
Formula Mazda: Tuesday, Dec. 13, 4 a.m.
American Sedan: Wednesday, Dec. 14, 4 a.m.
Formula Continental: Thursday, Dec. 15, 4 a.m.
D Sports Racing: Friday, Dec. 16, 4 a.m.
For a complete, first-airing broadcast schedule for the remaining 7 races, visit www.scca.com.
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