MAZDASPEED Challenge Rounds 9 & 10

< Back 09/02/2008

Tuesday, September 02, 2008 Here are the results and time sheets

Click here for the points standings

The photos are here

Rounds 9 and 10 of the inaugural Skip Barber MAZDASPEED Challenge were at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. The racing was close, exciting and clean (there was virtually no crash damage) and the weekend was a huge amount of fun.

Justin Piscitell, the points leader coming in, did a double weekend, to make up for his not being able to make the series opener in April, had a strong weekend. In his first race (Group 1), Piscitell ran Charles Ng very close, even setting fastest race lap, but Ng was perfect and beat Piscitell by .8 of a second, with Chris Brown third. Ken Greenberg and Randy McAyeal rounded out the top five, followed by Steve Perryman, Ivor Armistead III and Pilar Lastra (yes, SBRS has the best racer-names in the business…).

In the second race, again Ng and Piscitell went at it, and again Ng came home victorious, but it was even closer at the line, .259. And it was Charles who set fastest race lap this time. Brown repeated his P3, trailed closely by Brady Flaherty. McAyeal, Perryman and Armistead were next, with Lastra and Greenberg (a four-off punctured a tire while he was running fourth) rounding out the field.

Group 2’s first race was a dandy, with Piscitell, Flaherty and Luke Huntington going at it hammer and tongs, all three of them holding the lead at one time or another. Finally, with three laps to go, Piscitell got around Flaherty for the final time and took the win – his first without a DQ in front of him. Pete Mokran and Brown were fourth and fifth, respectively, trailed by Stephan Nakamura, Colin Faber and James Lustman. Fastest lap was set by Piscitell.

Group 2’s second race was even better, with no less than five different leaders! Piscitell only led two lapps – the first one and the last one. In between, Flaherty was at the point, as was Mokran (most laps led, but he spun (T9) out of the lead on lap 11), Huntington and Lustman. It was Lustman whom Piscitell got around on the last lap to take his second win of the weekend. Huntington wound up third, followed by Flaherty, Mokran, Faber and Nakamura.

Now, with just the finale at Road America on the docket (September 27-28), the championship battle is down to Lyonel Kent and Justin Piscitell. For sure it will be an exciting finish to a very successful first year of MAZDASPEED Challenge.

Remember, we’re creating two MAZDASPEED championships for 2008-2009, a West and a South. The Southern Series opens October 25-26, at a perfect track for the MX-5 Miatas, Carolina Motorsports Park (in S.C., about an hour south of Charlotte, N.C.). The Western Championship debuts November 1-2 at Laguna Seca.There are discounts available for both…

Rick Roso

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