WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – The Eastern Conference SCCA Majors Tour has trimmed down to just one event remaining on the schedule after Sunday’s action at the BFGoodrich Tires Watkins Glen Super Tour.
Sunday’s eight group races for the 27 SCCA National Championship Runoffs-eligible classes made up round 12 of 14 on the season for the Conference, making each point all the more valuable.
Several races came down to the wire during the day, with races schedule for 15-laps at the 3.4-mile circuit.
A fan could be forgiven for thinking Sunday’s Spec Miata race was a rerun, as, for the second day in a row, young hot shoes Andrew Carbonell and Dillon Machavern worked together to run away from the field and settle the race all on their own.
A stout field of Runoffs podium contenders and National Champions couldn’t keep pace with Carbonell’s No. 78 BSI Racing Mazda Miata with Machavern’s No. 24 Heritage/Panic/T-Speed Miata pushing, leaving the field behind both on the initial start, and again on the lap four restart after the safety team removed a stopped car.
Carbonell led the distance, and Machavern looked for a way around after the white flag waved to signal one lap to go. His final effort came out of the final corner and in the drag race to the checkered flag, where Machavern pulled alongside and to the door of Carbonell’s Miata, but couldn’t complete the pass before the stripe.
Saturday, the overall lead in the Production group took shape on the first turn when polesitter and E Production leader Rick Kavitski put his No. 24 RDK Engineering Mazda Miata in front under braking in turn one and stayed in front to the finish. On Sunday, Chris Dryden reversed his fortunes with a similar attack, setting a new track record on his way to the win.
Kavitski’s Miata appeared to have the handling, but Dryden’s No. 02 Pay Pal/Carbotech/Team JBS BMW Z3 and Kevin Leigh’s No. 97 JBS Racing/Hoosier BMW Z3 moved in front on acceleration when the green flag flew. Leigh moved to the inside going into turn one, avoiding a repeat of yesterday’s start, and Kavitski was in third while Dryden pulled away.
With Dryden clicking off laps even faster than Saturday, including the aforementioned track record, and stayed just in front of a charging Kavitski to the checkered flag.
Patrick Crider finally had his No. 89 Hoosier Tire/Jesse Prather Motorsports Mazda Miata in full song for the first time this weekend, and used that to run away with the F Production win on Sunday. Kyle Disque repeated his Saturday feat, taking the GT-Lite win in the No. 92 Toyota/TRD/Hoosier Tire Toyota Tercel.
Jason Stine took advantage of a first turn incident to claim the H Production win in his No. 37 Austin-Healey Sprite. Saturday winner Ron Bartell’s No. 4 Hoosier Tire MG Midget and Mark Weber’s F Production No. 25 Goodyear/Red Line Oil/ESCP Mazda Miata came together in a very busy first corner, sending both toward the tire barrier and ending their days without a completed lap. The full course caution lasted three laps.
Three full course cautions, including one that brought out the checkered flag on lap 13, marred the Formula Atlantic, Formula 1000 and Prototype 1 race on Sunday.
Chris Fahan’s No. 39 Hoosier Tire/MAZDASPEED Swift 016/Mazda led the way on each restart to take the overall and Formula Atlantic win, with Kirk Kindsfater’s No. 32 Ortho Center Rockies/K&N Filters Speads RS11 just behind for the Prototype 1 win. Jeremy Hill swept Formula 1000, and ran third overall, behind the wheel of his No. 00 Hoosier Tire Photon VD07.
Simon Gregg once again led the way in the big bore group, charging away to a GT-1 and overall win in the No. 59 Derhaag Motorsports Chevrolet Corvette. While Gregg was pulling away, two very different GT-2 machines were battling behind him.
Joe Napoleon’s No. 91 Chevrolet Camaro moved around Tom Patton’s No. 50 Red Line Oil/Hoosier Tires Sunbeam Tiger in the race’s middle stages, but couldn’t pull away and had the Tiger in his mirrors for three full laps. Once Patton moved around, however, he pulled away for the win.
Behind that lead group, which included runaway GT-3 winner Joe Kristensen’s No. 4 Acura RSX, was a split start for the Touring 1 and American Sedan groups that brought out a full-course caution for an incident in the opening corner.