DEER TRAIL, Colorado (July 3, 2016) – The final class championships were crowned for the Mid-States Conference of the SCCA U.S. Majors Tour Sunday at High Plains Raceway. Nineteen drivers scored class wins in five run groups under picture-perfect Colorado weather to close out the 2016 season.
In race group one, Eric Prill led flag-to-flag to win overall in his F Production MaxtonsFight.org/JPM/Hoosier Mazda Miata, but it was third-finishing Randy Wagner, of Tulsa, Oklahoma, who took the season-long class title in his Mazdaspeed Mazda Miata. Jim Leithauser took the Touring 2 win in his Hoosier/Alpine Motorsports/Bimmerhaus BMW M3, but runner-up Michael Pettiford, of Louisville, Colorado took the season title in his Go 4 It Racing Schools/Hoosier Pontiac Solstice. Jeff Jensen won Touring 4 in his Pikes Peak Acura/Acura RSX, but Stan Czacki, of Truth or Consequence, N.M., took that Championship with a runner-up finish in his Whitehead/DGI/Schaaf/BFG Acura RSX. Similarly, John Roberts won Super Touring Lite in his BFD Logistics/Hoosier Tire Mazda MX-5, while runner-up Scott Bettinger, of Haysville, Kansas, won the season title in his Don Preston Racing Mazda Miata.
In race group two, Steve Meyer took the Formula F win and season title in his Piper DF5/Honda. In Formula Vee, Tyler Hunter swapped cars with Mark Felsen, and it propelled him to the win in his Vortec/VW.
Jim Valdez went flag-to-flag for the GT-2 class and overall win in race three driving his Valdez Motorsports BMW E46. Pettiford scored his second Touring 1 win of the weekend, having already clinched that title in his Go 4 It Racing Schools/Hoosier Chevrolet Corvette ZO6. Bob Schader took the Touring 3 win and Championship in his Hoosier Tire Nissan 350Z. In the best race of that run group, Tom Himes emerged on top of a race-long battle with Saturday’s winner, Kim McDonald, to win American Sedan in his CH4 Resources Ford Mustang. Himes’ win clinched the season-long title for the Mid-States Conference. Anthony Simmers drove his Volkswagen GTI to his second win of the weekend in Super Touring® Under, clinching that class title.
Race Four was small but mighty, with a race-long battle for the Prototype 2 victory between Jay Messenger’s Mazda/Hoosier/Jacobs Warriors Carbir/Mazda MX-1 and the Carbir CS-2 of Bruce Gurney.
“Bruce Gurney had some trouble yesterday,” said Messenger. “His motor wasn’t running right, but he got it fixed. I didn’t anticipate that. I went real fast this morning in qualifying, but maybe missed a little this afternoon with my rear shock setting. I kind of had a handful and he was real strong and stayed right there the whole time. I finally said to myself ‘don’t look in the mirrors. If you don’t look, he’ll go away.’ Luckily, I was able to beat him to the finish line.”
Messenger’s win propelled him to the Mid-States Championship.
In the final Majors race of the weekend for Spec Racer Ford and Spec Miata, Keith Verges led flag-to-flag in Spec Racer Ford 3 for his second win of the weekend. The race was slowed for a mid-race incident, involving Spec Miata point leader and Saturday winner John Harms and the SRF3 of Paul Moore, but on the restart, Verges was able to maintain his lead in the Apex Driving Academy Spec Racer Ford. Michael Cameron came home second, and Grayson Strathman, of Jennings, Oklahoma, earned the season Championship in his Shock Top Beer Spec Racer Ford Gen 3 after finishing third.
Sixteen-year-old Max Nufer clinched the Spec Miata championship with a win Sunday after missing Saturday’s race to change a blown engine. It was Nufer’s second win and seventh podium in Mid-States Conference action in his NRE- Nufer Race Engineering Mazda Miata.
For all the event results and driver interviews, please visit www.scca.com/highplainsmajors.com.
DEER TRAIL, Colorado – Winners from Sunday’s 12th Round of the SCCA U.S. Majors Tour Mid-States Conference Championship with class, driver, hometown and car.
American Sedan, B. Thomas Himes, Slidell, Louisiana, Ford Mustang.
E Production, Cedric Donohoo, Arvada, Colorado, Mazda RX-8.
F Production, Eric Prill, Topeka, Kansas, Mazda Miata.
Formula 1000, David Mirk, Colorado Springs, Colorado, Phoenix F1000.
Formula F, Steve Meyer, Longmont, Colorado, Piper DF5.
Formula Mazda, Paul Ravaris, Aledo, Texas, Formula Mazda.
Formula Vee, Tyler Hunter, Denver, Colorado, Vortec/VW.
GT-2, Jim Valdez, Denver, Colorado, BMW E46.
GT-Lite, Jonathan Goodale, Conifer, Colorado, Mazda MX-5.
Prototype 1, Kirk Kindsfater, Eaton, Colorado, Speads RS11.
Prototype 2, Jay Messenger, Mulshoe, Texas, Carbir/Mazda MX-1.
Spec Miata, Max Nufer, Glencoe, Missouri, Mazda Miata.
Spec Racer Ford, Jim Tibor Jr., Silver Plume, Colorado, Spec Racer Ford.
Spec Racer Ford 3, Keith Verges, Dallas, Texas, Spec Racer Ford 3.
Super Touring Lite, John Roberts, Grapevine, Texas, Mazda MX-5.
Super Touring Under, Anthony Simmers, Boulder, Colorado, Volkswagen GTI.
Touring 1, Michael Pettiford, Louisville, Colorado, Chevrolet Corvette ZO6.
Touring 2, Jim Leithauser, Westminster, Colorado, BMW M3.
Touring 3, Bob Schader, Lafayette, Colorado, Nissan 350Z.
Touring 4, Jeff Jensen, Monument, Colorado, Acura RSX.
Photo credit: Rupert Berrington.