2016 Competition Update #3- Midseason update

Competitors,

This year has certainly been a battle of the elements.  We have had inconsistent and at times torrential rain.  We have had dry dusty conditions.  We have had “I am sweating faster than I can drink” heat.  It has been a wild and crazy ride that has yielded some fantastic class battles.  Before going any further make sure you sign up for our next event at Mosport HERE.  Also note there there is a two participation point bonus for members who attend BOTH Mosport and Watkins Glenn this year!  

COM held their first ever time trial event at Canaan Motor Club.  COM’s workers put a substantial amount of work into preparing and running this event.  We appreciate everyone’s efforts including the folks who stepped up to help flag the event.  This event highlighted what an amazing group of volunteers this club has.

We also had our first and only event at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park of 2016.  This was a very well-attended event.  Conditions were excessively hot.  For those that have invested in cool-suits; you finally got your money’s worth and then some!  We were treated to some excellent customer service from the track all around.  Now onto the class updates.

Super Unlimited – At Canaan Nick Coutu made his first appearance in SU in a Dodge Viper ACR-X.  He fell just short of FTD with a convincing win over Dan D’Arcy and Bruce Allen in their Exiges.  At Thompson Nick returned again besting his Dad David in the same car for the win.  Nick also secured his first COM FTD.  Congrats!  Dan D’Arcy holds the class lead with 32 points with a 5 point lead over Bruce Allen.  With two straight wins however Nick Coutu should make this an interesting battle the rest of the way.

Super A – Once again Tom Greer ran alone in Super A at Canaan but recorded a very strong time for the win.  At Thompson Aubrey Bout in his Z06 took the win by almost three seconds in his first COM event since Palmer2 last year.   Bill McMahon fell just shy of breaking the 1:20 mark in his Austin Healey for 2nd place.  On the season Tom Greer holds a commanding class lead with three class wins.  Hopefully this class continues to be campaigned as well as it was at Thompson.

Super B – Jake Wile brought the beast back to Canaan after a strong showing at Palmer.  He ran almost four seconds ahead of the remaining four Super B competitors for the win.  Dan Preston in his 370Z edged out BBQ Brooks for second place by less than half a second.  At Thompson Dan Preston stretched that gap to almost one and half seconds over Bob for the win.  Dan Preston owns the class lead but with drops factored in three drivers are within 10 points of him.

Super C – While going for his third FTD in a row, Peter Fontana backed his M3 into the wall at Canaan ending his Super C win streak at two.  Chris Parsons reaped the benefit and took his first class win since his 370Z was last spotted on track.  Super C was the home for three very unconventional Miatas at Thompson.  Will Martin’s borrowed Smiley’s topless Miata to complete his first time trial of 2016 finishing third.  Gordon Andrade also made his 2016 debut in his streamlined NC Miata to take second place.  But with the taste of victory still fresh in his mouth, Chris Parsons ran a very strong 1:20.699 in his turbo NA Miata to take the win.  For the season Chris Parson’s has a commanding lead with two wins and two second place finishes.  We hope to see more unconventional Miatas battling it out the rest of the way.

Super D – It’s been said the top half of a Miata is worth two seconds.  At Canaan Mark Swinehart picked up his first win this year beating Rebecca Harvey in her spec Miata by… you guessed it- two seconds.  At Thompson Greg Hosselbarth returned from his karaoke tour in Japan to edge out Mark Swinehart by less than half a second for first place.  Pete Rokel and Lemons teammate Nick Derosa had a photo finish for last place in their accomplished Ma$$hole Ford Escort.  Rebecca Harvey holds a slim lead in the class standings at the halfway point.

T100 – Bob Cairns and Laura Fleming missed Canaan but returned to battle at Thompson.  Bob took the win by a mere eight tenths of a second.  He was less than three tenths from FTD!  Bob has the class lead with three wins but I do not expect Laura to give up just yet.

T90 – David Reddington got his first career T90 win at Canaan.  Congrats!  At Thompson Jon Harris took the win in his Z06 over a Mike Papageorgiou in his SRT4 with half as many cylinders.  Jon Harris holds the class lead at the halfway point.  Will Stephen Tise come back to battle it out?

T80 – COM’s own sim (and real life driving) savant Nick Fontana set the pace at Canaan with a blazing 1:01.777 in his E36 M3 which was good for the T80 win and FTD.  At Thompson Nick’s motor gave out at the end of day one which left T80 wide open for what turned out to be a large driver field.  David Lapierre pulled off an impressive win in his Cayman GT4 with a 1:18.723.  Victor Larin wasn’t far behind in his E46 M3 edging out first-time time-trialer Ranjan Lal in a Cayman GT4 of his own.  Victor Larin owns a slim class lead at the halfway point.  Will Nick find another motor in time for Mosport?

T70 – Jon “She thinks my tractor’s sexy” Cowen laid down some consistent laps in his M3 at Canaan for the win.  Nelson Barros was not far behind in his own M3.  The M3s were back at it at Thompson.  Once again Jon had the edge taking the win by about a second in front of Nelson.  James Ray was only a couple tenths behind Nelson for third place in his Mustang.  Jon has the class lead with 34 points for now but Nelson is right on his heels with 30 points.  James Ray’s DNF at Canaan proved costly but he is still in the running when factoring the drop.

T60 – David Lemoine is driving his BMW 328 like its a Miata- flat out!  He put up a monster lap at Canaan for the win with a 1:04.336.  Troy Velazquez in his NC Miata was not far behind with a 1:05.166.  Roe Cole  made his first T60 podium of the year finishing only seven tenths behind Troy.  Classroom instructor Stephan de Penasse won the most consistent trophy- Ayrton would be proud.  At Thompson, Troy Velazquez laid down an absolutely blazing lap of 1:20.876 good for the win and a new track record.  David Wittmer returned from paternity leave and gave it all he had in his T50 check that T60 NA Miata to take second with a 1:21.929.  It was a photo finish between two Porsches for the last spot on the podium but it was previous T60 track-record holder Jason Woz in his spec Boxter who edged out Roe Cole in his 944.  Troy Velazquez has managed two wins and two second-place finishes and leads the class with 40 points.  Despite a mechanical withdrawal at Palmer and having yet another baby David Wittmer finds himself in second place with 18 points.  It won’t be for long however if indecisive-Dave Lemoine decides to stick with T60.  Dave is tied for 3rd place with Roe Cole with 16 points.

T50 – Jeff won at Canaan- wait, that Jeff?  Jeff Baker pulled off an upset at Canaan edging out Jeff Wasilko by only 0.199 seconds.  Jeff Wasilko came out on top of yet another photo finish at Thompson to take the win.  Jeff Baker was only 0.19 seconds behind Jeff W. proving his Canaan result was no fluke.  Matt Leblanc had his best performance of 2016 finishing only 0.24 seconds behind Jeff B.  Meanwhile when no one was looking Ryan Catucci finished in 4th place in his Honda only 0.783 seconds behind first place.  Jeff Wasilko has three wins on the season and owns the class lead with 42 points.  His lead is only 4 points over Jeff Baker with the drop however.  This should be a good battle to watch the rest of the year.

T40 – Julie Wasilko earned her first career COM class win at Canaan with a lap time of 1:09.635.  Tom Cannon had a solid day finishing second only seven tenths behind.  Scott Rosnick’s motor may have actually done him a favor as it waited to blow a hole in the side of the block until after he had his first time trial lap completed earning him third place podium points.  At Thompson, T40 had one if if not the deepest fields of the year in any class at 13 deep.  Newly-appointed Chief Steward Derek Tangard decided to finally show up to an event and pulled off the win and set a track record.  Scott Rosnick with a fresh $50 motor installed finished only eight tenths behind Derek for second place.  Larry Leff put down some strong laps in his co-driven spec Miata to grab the final podium spot (he must have had some great instruction!).  Robert Smigiel is quietly knocking on the podium door and earned his first COM trophy finishing in 4th place.  Scott Rosnick has rolled with the punches that this season has thrown at him and has the class lead despite only one win thus far.  Tom Cannon is only two points behind in second place followed by Julie Wasilko with 22.  With 2014 T40 class winner Derek Tangard back on the scene this should be one of the best class battles in the club.

T30 – Mikhael El-Bayeh made his 2016 debut at Canaan and won T30 (and T40!) with a lap time of 1:08.408.  Stephen Hosker also ran a lap time good enough to win T40 but fell just short of Mikhael for second place.  At Thompson Mikhael picked up right where he left off with a strong showing good for a first place finish and track record in T30.  Stephen Hosker was a mere 0.8 seconds behind for second place.  Andrew Grigg picked up his first COM podium and trophy finishing only a couple tenths behind Stephen.  Stephen Hosker leads T30 for the year with 40 points followed by Peter Perrault with 24.  Mikhael El-Bayeh only has 22 points but could make it a tight battle by the end of the year with the drop factored in.  Stay tuned!

Overall Driver Champion Standings

49.00- Troy Valzaquez
47.25- Jeff Wasilko
44.75- Stephen Hosker
42.25- Jon Harris
42.25- Chris Parsons
42.25- Tom Greer
 

This race is all about who blinks first.  While T60 offers the most class points of the group Troy has maybe the highest level of competition to deal with for the remainder of the year.  Jeff is always in the mix and positioned well to make a run at the big trophy again this year.  Stephen Hosker will need to step up his game to keep that Civic at bay to stay in the running.  This should be fun to watch!

~Dave W.