Skip Barber Racing School's Top 10 Events of 1999

The Skip Barber Racing School's Top 10 Events of 1999 ================================================= http://www.skipbarber.com/news/1999/news210.htm ================================================= There were a lot of great moments and ...

The Skip Barber Racing School's Top 10 Events of 1999 ================================================= http://www.skipbarber.com/news/1999/news210.htm =================================================

There were a lot of great moments and memories for the Skip Barber Racing School in 1999.

From Jeff Gordon's victory in the Daytona 500 to Juan Montoya's record-breaking run en route to the CART FedEx Championship Series title, Skip Barber graduates produced many of the top highlights of the year.

In no particular order, here is our Top 10 list of events for Skip Barber-trained drivers and the Skip Barber Racing School in 1999.

If you disagree with our picks, or have other suggestions for our Top 10 list, please let us know at speed@skipbarber.com.

* Kenny Brack Wins The Indianapolis 500 - Former Barber Pro Series champion captures the world's biggest one-day event and gives A.J. Foyt his first Indy 500 victory as a car owner.

* Juan Montoya Takes CART Championship In Rookie Season - This Skip Barber Three Day Racing School graduate and former Barber Pro Series driver compiled the greatest rookie season in CART history. En route to the FedEx Championship Series crown, Montoya established CART rookie records for victories (seven) and laps led (942) and tied the rookie mark for pole positions (seven). He became the youngest champion in CART history at 24 years, 1 month and 11 days and joined Nigel Mansell, the 1993 champion, as the only rookie to win the PPG Cup.

* Jeff Simmons Wins Second Consecutive Barber Dodge Pro Series Championship - Simmons, of East Granby, Conn., makes history when he edges Todd Snyder for the 1999 Barber Dodge Pro Series title, becoming the first driver to capture two championships.

* Ryan Hunter-Reay Is First Formula Dodge National Champion - A field of the top Formula Dodge Race Series drivers in the country are gathered at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Conn. on Oct. 16 for the inaugural Skip Barber Formula Dodge National Championship Presented by RACER. Hunter-Reay, an 18-year-old from Boca Raton, Fla., pulls away from Bryan Sellers and Peter Boss to win the 30-minute shootout. Hunter-Reay would go on to win the Skip Barber "Big Scholarship" in November and will receive a fully funded season in the Barber Dodge Pro Series in 2000.

* Jeff Gordon Wins His Second Daytona 500 - Gordon, a Three Day Racing School grad, used a three-wide move to get past Rusty Wallace and Mike Skinner with 11 laps to go and then held off Dale Earnhardt to win NASCAR's biggest race.

* Jerry Nadeau Signs With Hendrick Motorsports - Nadeau, 28, a former competitor in the Skip Barber Formula Race Series and Pro Series, signs to drive for the most successful Winston Cup operation of the 1990s, taking over the No. 25 Hendrick Motorsports ride starting with the 2000 season.

* Sports Capital Partners Invests in Skip Barber Racing School -In February, Sports Capital Partners aquired a majority interest in the world's largest racing school valued at $25 to 35 million. The investment is designed to fuel the expansion of the Skip Barber Racing School with Mr. Barber remaining as President and CEO. The acquisition marked the fist investment made by the Sports Capital Partners, formed in 1998 by David S. Moross, IMG, and Chase Capital Partners.

* Kenny Brack Signs With Team Rahal - After winning an IRL championship in 1998 and the Indy 500 in '99, Brack will move over to the CART circuit in 2000 and race for all-time great Bobby Rahal.

* Jack Sprague Wins NCTS Championship With Victory in Season Finale - Sprague came out in front following a wild two-lap dash to the finish in the season finale at California Speedway, overcoming a 21-point deficit to win his second NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship by a mere eight points.

* Renna And Simmons Sign Indy Lights Deals - The Skip Barber Scholarship Ladder is an integral part of the Skip Barber Racing organization. Two products of that system have signed to drive in the PPG-Dayton Indy Lights Championship in 2000. Tony Renna, 22, a former Skip Barber Formula Dodge Race Series and Barber Dodge Pro Series driver, has a long-term deal with PacWest Racing as a test driver and Indy Lights competitor. Simmons, 23, recently joined Team Kool Green and will team with 1999 Rookie of the Year Johnny Kane in Indy Lights next year.

Other Notable Moments Include: Geoff Boss wins Indy Lights race at Toronto, Townsend Bell gets first Barber Dodge Pro Series victory at Lime Rock, Sepp Koster's Barber Dodge Pro Series pole at Grand Rapids, Todd Snyder's three straight victories in Barber Dodge Pro Series, Michael Valiante's debut race podium finish, Jaime Menninga's first career podium finish at Detroit, Tim Allen participates in lapping day at Laguna Seca.

- Roy Hasty

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