NA-F2000: Urlin looking forward to next year

Following what most people would consider a nightmare end to his 2001 racing season, JW Urlin of London, Ontario, is happy, excited and looking forward to next year. Urlin, a former karting champion who turned nineteen yesterday, just got back...

Following what most people would consider a nightmare end to his 2001 racing season, JW Urlin of London, Ontario, is happy, excited and looking forward to next year. Urlin, a former karting champion who turned nineteen yesterday, just got back from Florida where the US Formula 2000 season wound up with a pair of races at Sebring International Raceway, September 29-30.

Heading into this weekend, Urlin was prepared for a breakthrough. Having spent most of the season with a small, privately-run team, he was to finish the season with Cape Motorsports, one of the series' powerhouse teams.

Things got off on the wrong foot when JW was unable to make it to Florida last Thursday for a two-hour practice session. It was the only practice time available to USF2000 drivers for the whole weekend and so Urlin had to learn the track during two qualifying sessions held on Saturday.

Having had no practice, JW's performance was understandably off the pace and the fact that the diffuser (an aerodynamic component) on his car broke did not help matters. Out of 25 cars, Urlin qualified 25th and 22nd for the two races.

Hoping his luck would turn around in the races, Urlin kept his chin, and spirits, up. In race one, held Saturday afternoon, he completed just four laps before mechanical trouble finished his day. Then, on Sunday, he completed fifteen laps before mechanical trouble sidelined him again. Talk about a lousy weekend!

After the event, however, Urlin wasn't the least bit disappointed.

"The car was awesome in the races!" he said. "Mechanical problems bit us twice, but I've never had a car handle that well. The Cape Motorsports team was awesome. We just had some bad luck."

In Saturday's race, JW had rocketed to 15th before something broke in the drive train. Impressive again on Sunday, he had skillfully threaded his Budget Rent A Car / London Auto Glass car all the way to 11th when his engine gave up, the result of a failed coil.

"I'm disappointed that I didn't finish either race," Urlin reflected, "But I'm glad I had this chance to run with Cape because it really showed me a big difference in the car set up. I've never had a car like that before. It was incredible.

"I'm looking forward to doing some testing with Cape soon," he continued, "And I'm pretty pumped up about next year already."

-mjc-

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Series Other open wheel