16th Sep2016

NASA Utah 2016 Round 7: The Penultimate Round!

by Michael Chandler

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It was a crowded weekend, and it was a good weekend.  We had the good ol’ boys and the plucky series from California joining our local heroes: the NASA Utah drivers, crew, and hangers on.  We’re going to start our recap of the races, at least Saturday’s races, in the Lightning group.  Specifically in the GTS2, where Chris Haunold drove like a madman to take the win.  He didn’t have to drive like a madman to do so, because he was all by his lonesome on that day.

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Papa SMurf is wise, but Papa Smurf also has had some issues with his Smurf mobile.  This Saturday it was some unintended three wheel motion that sidelined the blue Miata, but thankfully Todd Green has access to the legendary, mighty, and all powerful Paul Mitchell.  With the noble steed betwixt his thighs underneath him, he secured himself the win in PTE.

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In a tight Spec Miata race, Chris “three measures of Gordon’s; one of vodka; half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it over ice, and add a thin slice of lemon peel” Bond somehow held off Matt Williamson.  Matt was on a mission the whole race, but couldn’t get anything to stick.  So great to see this race happen.  I’ve been telling you people to watch Spec Miata!

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Our lone Thunder Roadster entrant, JD Stull, ran a solid race and turned a fastest lap of 2:16.545.  Not too bad.

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944 Spec has a new driver!  Otto and Sam have a new challenger: Greg Troester, and he made his presence known by taking the class win by over nineteen seconds!

We’ve now come to Spec Z, which was insane.  Not because it was a close race, but because almost everyone felt the need to test the off-roading prowess of the Nissan 350Z.

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There were a lot of Z’s covered in dust at various points in the day, and plenty had some after the race.

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Speaking of, Arthur Golebiowski took the win.  He dominated, because that’s what he does.

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Jeff Burton, in his Cayman R, hung a 50 second lead on Mark Reichman to take the GTS3 win.  Now, we need to have a chat Jeff.  You seem like a nice enough guy, but you need to do something about the looks of your car.  It’s too understated.  Hear me out!  Throw a classic Porsche livery on there.  Not Matrini, not Rothman’s, definitely not Gulf.  No, you need the Pink Pig.  Think about it…

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Anywell, in GTS4 we had Byron Smith and Darrell Troester battling it out.  Unfortunately, Byron retired from the race.  Having the win in hand, Darrell kept getting good laps in.  His best time in the race was a 2:03.079.

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ST1 had the closest finish of the day, and maybe of the season.  Bob Evans and Michael Eifling had a close battle all race, with neither one giving an inch.  Bob, being cagey, got the nose of his Sprint Cup Ford Fusion JUST ahead of Michael’s C5 Corvette at the line.  Bob’s margin of victory was .045 seconds!  This battle was good enough for Bob to win Racer of the Day honors at the barbecue.  Recognizing the hell of a drive Michael had, Bob decided to give the award to Michael.  It was a great act, but not without a touch of Bob-ness: Dave Kizerian made the announcement that Bob was giving his award to Michael, Michael came up and gave Bob a hug.  Bob, while still hugging Michael, spun 180 degrees.  They let go of each other, and Bob began making his way back to his seat… with the award still in his hand.  He gave it to Michael, but it was a fun little sequence.

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Despite not having a splittler, due to it coming loose and disintegrating during an earlier TT session, Toby Crawford took home the ST2 win.

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Todd Ainsworth, in the Minion mobile, defended himself against a herd of Ford Performance Racing School Mustangs in ST3.  He held of the colorful ponies, and got himself the win.

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We had a new challenger in Super Unlimited.  Well, a new car.  Steve Burns hopped in this former Trans Am Mustang, and went toe to toe with the likes of the Makes & Models Huracan ST, the Air Power Racing 911 GT3R, and Swamp Thing.  He did well in the new car, beating out Swamp Thing for the class win, and coming in P2 overall.

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In P1 overall, and setting a new class record in the process, was Derek Wolthoff in the Makes & Models Huracan ST.  He ran away with the race win, with a 29.990 second gap over second place.

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Lyfe Motorsport had a few drivers out in some Porsche Cup cars.  In the yellow 996 Cup car was David Bradshaw, who took TT1 with a best time of 2:06.481.

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We had a dramatic upset in TT3!  Mike Bratsch, taking advantage of James Pasquier’s absence and Andy Moench being a new daddy (congrats buddy!), ran a fast lap of 2:09.044 and got himself a shiny new piece of hardware.

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We had some Miata on Miata violence in TTB!  Darin Beaudoin, in his white S2000, faced an attack from Nam Yoon, in his white S2000.  Less than a second separated them, but in the end the affable Darin got himself another win.  Does this win prove that the S2000 is the ultimate TTB machine?  YOUR GUESS IS AS GOOD AS MINE!

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Max Dufford, in the wrong-from-a-purist’s-POV-but-right-from-a-physics-stand-point Porsche, ran a 2:16.078 en route to a TTC win.

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Trever with an E Pope took home another TTD win, and hit the kerbs in the Attitudes like they owed him money.

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Pictured above is Papa Smurf, winning PTE with a best time of 2:15.343 and before he drove a wheel off of the Smurf mobile.

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In the second of the Lyfe backed Porsche Cup Cars was Mike Kresser.  He was driving it in TTU, and took home a win with a 2:01.452.

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This f*ckin guy.  I mean, seriously.  Shawn Murphy set a TT2 record last month AND became the first Subaru to break the 2 minute mark on the Outer Loop, and now this month he breaks his own record by over half a second.  Is it not good enough for you Shawn?  WHY CAN’T YOU JUST BE HAPPY?!?  But seriously, this is a hell of a feat.  He didn’t just break his own record by a little but.  The .6whatever it is he broke it by, is a a decent margin.  And this is still a “full interior street car”.  Imagine if it were lighter…

And that’s that.  We have one more round coming up, the legendary TresDuro!  Keep October 7, 8, and 9 open, because there will be multi track configuration racing on Saturday, and FULL TRACK MADNESS ON SUNDAY!!!  You best be out there.

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