ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (June 19, 2004) – The first winners of the 2004 Kohler SCCA Chicago Region June Sprints have been found as the first three races were run under pristine conditions at Road America on Saturday afternoon.-30-
In Group One, Jacek Mucha, of Laual, Ont. (Can.), dominated the group and the C Sports Racing class all weekend in his Ralt JMS ride, taking the pole after qualifying and then the checkered flag by more than 44 seconds over local driver Jeff Miller, of Elkhart Lake, Wis., in his Kohler/Millennium/Hoosier/Red Line Wynnfurst. This year marked the 35th-straight June Sprints for Miller. Mike Lord, of Suamico, Wis., finished third in his Subway Radical ProSport.
Where CSR was virtually clean throughout, D Sports Racing had a bit of controversy. Three drivers held the lead before the end, including Jeff Miller’s son, Jason, of Elkhart Lake, Wis., in his CAR. After Al Beasley, Jr., of Newbury, Ohio, lost his lead going off at turn 13 during lap 10, Miller held the lead for one lap before being black-flagged for a second time due to noise.
Thanks to Miller’s disqualification, San Francisco Region’s Richard Steranka, of Los Gatos, Calif., took the lead in his RENNWERKS Stohr model ride and held on for the final laps to claim the victory. After the dust settled up top, Paul Parker, of Atlanta, Ga., wound up in second in his Powertec Engines/Radical South Radical Prosport. Mike Reupert, of Hubertus, Wis., in his Goodyear/Redline Oil Lola AMW, finished third.
Also in Group One, Sports 2000 competitors staged a clean race virtually throughout their 13 laps. John Fergus, of Powell, Ohio, emerged early in his Hoosier Tires Carbir CS2 and took the class win. Mark Mercer, of Aurora, Colo., grabbed second in his Hoosier Tires Lola 91/90, and David Dullum, of Falls Chhurch, Va., earned third in his Lola.
Group Two saw Aaron Ellis, of Indianapolis, Ind., move all the way from his eighth-qualifying spot in a fantastic Formula 500 race to take the win in his Goodyear/Ellis Motorsports Red Devil AE 03 over Brian Novak, of Dearborn, Mich. Novak started eleventh on the road in his Hoosier Tire/HRP Motorsports NovaKar J9 and jumped all the way to the top of the field, leading the race with two laps to go. Ellis, however, took advantage of a draft on the last lap and maneuvered into the lead at Canada Corner, turn 12 of the 14-turn course. Mike Bymaster, of Brownsburg, Ind., wound up third in his Goodyear KBS MKVII.
Formula Vee competitors turned in a stellar performance as the race wasn’t decided until the very end. Brad Stout, of St. Louis, Mo., came back from a broken brake drum during morning qualifying to get the win over a tightly-packed bunch.
In his Goodyear LRE/Noble/ACI Vortech, Stout forged an early lead and held on to it for the first half of the race, but then was caught in a classic Formula Vee draft by three cars behind him.
Mike Kochanski, of Inverness, Ill., led the assault on Stout and drafted into the lead briefly in his KMC/RCK/Integrity/DRE/Hoosier Citation XTC 41 on lap nine. However, the three-time national champion Stout rebounded with his fastest lap of the race on lap 10 and then held on to the top spot in a four-car sprint to the finish. Brandon Peterson, of Edwards, Colo., wound up in third in his Bell/PeakPerformance/Ed O’Hayre Motors VDF 2.
In the day’s final race, former national champion Jamie Bach, of Saukville, Wis., bolted out to a large lead early and then cruised across the stripe with the win in his BK Motorsports Inc Star Formula Mazda, 19.072 seconds ahead of silver-finisher Jay Ricci, of Birmingham, Mich. Ricci, in his JD Byrider/Joe Ricci/ Dodge.com Star Formula Mazda, finished ahead of Glenn Cooper, of Roswell, Ga., who moved up midway through the race to capture third place.
Scott Rarick, of Santa Monica, Calif., took the Formula Ford win in his Goodyear/ Ivey Hertfelder/ Rust DB 6 even though he never crossed the finish line. Battling it out with Justin Pritchard, of Granville, Ohio, and going into Canada Corner on lap 12 (the final FF lap after a split start), Rarick slid into the gravel on the sharp corner and busted his car’s suspension.
Pole-sitter Pritchard went on to finish the race in his Hoosier Tire/Piper Engineering/Raceday Piper DF 5, only to be informed that he had been disqualified for not holding the pace set by the pace car before the race began. The decision will not be appealed.
Through the decision, Mike Sauce, of Arlington, Texas, in his Sportscar Performance/Goodyear Sauce 01, and Slade Miller, of Edmond, Okla., in his Hoosier/Ivey Engines/Quantum Mech Van Diemen RF 01, finished second and third, respectively.
The Kohler SCCA Chicago Region June Sprints’ final five races are set to begin Sunday at 11:10 a.m. following final qualifying sessions that are scheduled to begin at 8:15 a.m. For more information and up-to-date results from both qualifying sessions and races, visit www.scca.com.
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