Skip Barber National – Lime Rock Park Preview
Wednesday, May 26, 2010 After almost a month since the last race at Virginia International Raceway, the drivers of the 2010 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National Presented by Mazda are getting ready for rounds seven and eight at Lime Rock Park. Last year, the race was in October and the fall weather was a key factor in the racing. However, the track conditions are warm and sunny and look to stay that way for this weekend’s double-header.
Championship leader Spencer Pigot and Michael Dцrrbecker each took home a race win for rounds five and six, and Pigot currently holds a strong lead in the championship with a thirteen-point lead over Isaac Lyons (174), followed by Dennis Trebing (165), Nick Andries (164) and Felix Serralles (160).
Trebing is still dealing with a broken hand, but will still no doubt put up a fight as he did at VIR, clinching the pole position for round five. This past weekend, Ashley Freiberg picked up a win in the Summer Series at Watkins Glen International and also won the Memorial race at the end of the weekend with Skip Barber alum John Edwards finishing in second. Freiberg is currently in sixth in the championship standings and is bound to carry some of the momentum from last weekend with her to Lime Rock Park. The Icelandic volcano is no longer an issue as it was for Daniel Lloyd and Isaac Lyons last month, and both are sure to cross the pond to fight for position.
Last year at Lime Rock Park, the track conditions for the National race were anything but ideal, with a cold and wet October weekend. Connor De Phillippi clinched the championship at the start of race one but still drove strong, putting up a fight for the lead position on track. Sage Karam won the first race of the weekend, with over a two and a half second lead over Isaac Lyons in second and Dennis Trebing in third. Karam’s steak continued into qualifying for the next semi-wet round by claiming the pole position, but he would eventually finish in second.
De Phillippi and Ashley Freiberg both slid on wet conditions during the course of the race and had to work their way up from the back of the pack. In the final lap, De Phillippi worked his way up to the lead, only to slip out onto the grass and finish seventh. Court Vernon won the race by .026 seconds over Karam and Sean Rayhall. Dennis Trebing, Isaac Lyons and Ashley Freiberg finished P4, P5 and P8.
2008 National Champion Conor Daly picked up his second win in a row last weekend for round three of the Star Mazda Championship at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. His weekend started off with the pole position, and he now has a 20-point lead in the overall championship, and has a 32-point lead over 2009 National Champion Connor De Phillippi. In 2006, young American Alexander Rossi won the Skip Barber Karting Shoot-Out and went on to place third in the 2006 National Championship (and also went on to win the 2008 Formula BMW Americas Championship and the World Final). Earlier this month, Alexander clinched his first GP3 win from pole position at round two of the Spain opener at Circuit de Catalunya. He also recently qualified fifth in round three of the World Series by Renault.
This past weekend, Mikhail Goikhberg picked up a second USF2000 win in a non-points race Sunday at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Goikhberg took the lead from pole sitter and fellow Skip Barber alum Sage Karam and won by 1.699 seconds.
Current National Championship point leader Spencer Pigot clinched the pole position and race win of round one of the Canadian Formula Ford Championship debut. Despite a gearbox failure, 16 year-old Pigot drove strong and finished second in round two for Brian Graham Racing. Spencer will be defending his lead for the Skip Barber National Championship this weekend at Lime Rock Park.
This month is a big one for Skip Barber Alum as the 94th running of the Indianapolis 500 rapidly approaches. Not only is the pole sitter, Helio Castroneves, a Skip Barber alum, but 10 more of the 33 drivers have Skip Barber ties (qualifying positions in parenthesis): Ed Carpenter (8th), Townsend Bell (10th), 2003 Skip Barber National Champion Raphael Matos (12th), 2004 National Champion Marco Andretti (16th), 1999 National Champion Ryan Hunter-Reay (17th), E.J. (Ernesto when we knew him) Viso (19th), Danica Patrick (23rd), John Andretti (28th), Sarah Fisher (29th) and Sebastian Saavedra (33rd).
Entry list, Rounds 7 and 8, 2010 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National Presented by Mazda
Scott Anderson, 21, Fort Collins, Colo.
Nicholas Andries, 19, Pinellas Park, Fla.
Ashley Freiberg, 18, Homer Glen, Ill.
Daniel Lloyd, 17, England
Isaac Lyons, 20, Northern Ireland
Brandon Newey, 17, Carmel, Ind.
Mukul Sud, 24, India
Spencer Pigot, 16, Windermere, Fla.
Felix Serralles, 17, Haines City, Fla.
Dennis Trebing, 17, Cape Coral, Fla.
Trent Hindman, 14, Wayside, N.J.
Scott Heckert, 16, Ridgefield, Conn.
Wednesday, May 26
Practice sessions and Testing, 8:00am-5:00pm.
(Session order to be determined by weather and other factors.)
Friday, April 28
Round 7 Qualifying, 5:35 – 6:00pm
Saturday, May 29
Round 7 of 14, 2010 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National Presented by Mazda, 9:00 – 9:40am
Monday, May 31
Round 8 Qualifying, 10:40 – 11:05am
Round 8 of 14, 2010 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National Presented by Mazda, 5:00 – 5:45pm