Skerlong impresses in Star Mazda and wins again in Formula TR Mukilteo, Washington (July 26, 2006) - Carl Skerlong's 'double-duty' turn at Portland International Raceway last weekend, 22nd-23rd July, competing in the Star Mazda ...
Skerlong impresses in Star Mazda and wins again in Formula TR
Mukilteo, Washington (July 26, 2006) - Carl Skerlong's 'double-duty' turn at Portland International Raceway last weekend, 22nd-23rd July, competing in the Star Mazda Series and the Formula TR Pro Series 2000 class proved to be another opportunity for the 17-year-old racer to showcase his talents.
Focusing initially on his second start in the Star Mazda Series, racing for the Portland-based Northwest Autosport team, Skerlong was immediately matching the pace of the season-long front-runners, setting top-six practice times throughout Thursday and Friday's practice sessions.
Saturday morning's qualifying session saw Carl collect the seventh fastest lap time from the 32-strong Star Mazda field, his second top-ten start following his third place grid slot for the season-opener at Sebring back in March. The start of the 29-lap sprint round the 1.976-mile Oregon circuit heralded the beginning of a frustrating outing for Skerlong as he found himself caught up in the immediate aftermath of pole-sitter Adrian Carrio's opening lap spin.
Carl pitted under caution for a new nose cone and the team worked feverishly to fix a bent front-right wishbone. He was eventually released from the pits and when racing resumed Carl was on a mission to make up for lost ground. He wasted little time in carving his way through the back- markers and climbed to 14th before being awarded a 60-second stop-go penalty for the team having too many people over the wall at his earlier stop. The time lost dropped Carl a lap-down and proved to be a disappointing end to what had been a promising weekend-long performance.
Putting those frustrations behind him, Carl bounced back in his usual style with a comprehensive victory in Round 14 of the Formula TR Pro Series 2000 class. Sitting out Round 13 on Saturday for his Star Mazda commitments, Carl returned to his regular ride piloting the #14 Odyssey Motorsports entry and duly steered his way to win number 11 of the season to maintain his season-long lead in the title chase over John Knudsen.
Reflecting on a busy weekend in Star Mazda and Formula TR Carl stated:
"We don't have nearly the same seat time that everyone else has in Star Mazda so to be consistently in the top-six in just my second outing is pretty satisfying. It turned out to be a frustrating race for me but I'll take the positives from my pace in the car and the fact I was up there in all the sessions. Sunday's victory in Formula TR was a good way to cap the weekend and hold on to my lead in the points despite missing Saturday's race."
Rounds 15 and 16 of the Formula TR 2000 Series are hosted at Thunderhill Park, California, 12th-13th August - www.formulatr.com