ELKHART LAKE, Wis. – Dean Copeland finished in the top position for round nine of the SCCA Pro Racing Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich tires at Road America, part of the Road Race Showcase.
Nathanial Sparks and Sebastian Landy completed the podium.
For the second time in his career, Copeland scored a series win at Road America. This time, Copeland did it as part of a race that average 91.386 mph around the 14-turn, 4.048-mile permanent road course. For 16 laps, Copeland kept his No. 7 Copeland Motorsports/Sync Speed Inc. MX-5 in contention for the lead. On the final lap, he started his move in the Carousel to get around Sparks. While Copeland started the pass it turn 10, it wasn’t complete until the exit of Turn 12.
“We had a long time to think about this race since it was so late,” Copeland said. “Before the race, I played every scenario through my head that I could think of. But, when it came to the start of the race, all that planning goes out the window. It was pretty clear the Sick Sideways guys, of Sparks and Dean, were working together very closely. I tried to get between them early on, but they weren’t having any of that. So, I just decided to sit behind them until the closing laps, and I was hoping someone would come to help.
“Once we got the white flag, Sebastian [Landy] was there to help. We had a shot, and we took it. Landy have me enough of a draft to get around the two Sick Sideways guys.
“This type of racing suits my driving style. I like race on the edge, and you can’t be scared around this place. Going flat out through ‘The Kink’ isn’t easy, but it’s something you have to do.”
Like Copeland, Sparks was part of the five-car group that continually swapped the lead amongst themselves for the second half of the race. The lead officially changed hands nine times among three drivers, while many other unofficial passes for the race lead took place elsewhere on the circuit.