SBRS: Watkins Glen report

The Boss Returns WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 30) - In a race run in two halves, split by a brief but sudden downpour, Barber Dodge Pro Series points leader Fredrik Larsson spun off in Turn One in the first segment then hit oil and/or coolant in ...

The Boss Returns WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 30) - In a race run in two halves, split by a brief but sudden downpour, Barber Dodge Pro Series points leader Fredrik Larsson spun off in Turn One in the first segment then hit oil and/or coolant in the second half, putting him into the wall and ending his day. Geoff Boss on the other hand was picture-perfect through the rain and debris and took his long awaited first 1996 win. Ricky Moran, Jr., and Thomas Schie made it through the mayhem for second and third, respectively. On a damp-but-drying track, the moment the green flag flew it began to rain. The 27-car field headed to One, but numerous drivers, including Larsson, went in too hot and spun off the suddenly very slick track. Boss, starting fourth, top-toed through to the lead, while Moran, who started second, lost a bunch of spots trying to avoid Larsson. Tony Renna took second and Schie third. The rain began to lighten, but then came down even harder. After four laps, officials threw a full-course caution, then the red flag. On the re-start an hour later, on a damp-but-drying track and the field still on slicks, Boss kept his lead but had Renna right on his gearbox and Jeff Bucknum right behind him, having disposed of Schie in Turn One. Then Renna, Bucknum, John McCaig and Larsson, somewhere mid-pack, went flying off the track in Turn 10. "There was oil or coolant or something, right on the line," Boss said. " I had a big slide but saved it. The other guys weren't so lucky." Moran, who had qualified an outstanding second, was seventh for the re-start, having lost all those positions in the "first half ". But he was onfire in the second half, working his way past Derek Hill, Rino Mastronardi and Steve Rikert in four laps time. With about eight minutes remaining, he got a run on Schie up thorugh the Esses and got him under braking for the Chicane. "I might have had something for Geoff had I gotten past everybody sooner, but really, I am very happy. Second is fantastic right now," Moran said, with a smiling Rocky, Sr. nearby. Rikert had his best ever Barber Dodge race, running with the leaders all weekend. His fifth place means yet another driver to be added to the list of potential podium players. Hill was on track for his third straight podium result, taking third from Schie five laps from the end, when he hit a bump, knocking off the starter switch key. He figured it out quickly and turned the switch back up, but not before losing two spots, crossing the line sixth. Tim Moser struggled through electronic and chassis problems the whole weekend, then damaged a front wing and a zillion spots when he spun off in the first half. But he does not ever give up and Moser made sure he got himself into the points by race's end, finishing eighth, just behind Leandro Larrosa. Philippe Siffert and G.J. Mennen rounded out the top 10. Moser lost second place in the points to Rino Mastronardi, but Larsson's overall lead to second and third place was cut. Boss' win, following a very tough start for a pre-season title favorite (he had scored just 13 points through the first five races), moved him to 10th overall. The next race, Sears Point Raceway July 14, was the site of his third win last year, when Boss finished second to eventual champion Jaki Scheckter. If the last names of three of the drivers in this race ring up F1 bells, you are not mistaken: Three sons of former World Championship drivers started this race, the first time anyone can remember something like this occurring; Bucknum, Hill and Siffert are the sons of Ronnie, Phil and Jo. -Rick Roso

SCCA Pro Racing, Barber Dodge Pro Series race results, round 6 (June 30), Watkins Glen International, 2.54-mile, 8-turn "NASCAR Short Course."

Round 6: Fin. St. Driver, town or country, laps completed, reason out (if any), prize 1. (4) Geoff Boss, Narragansett, R.I., 97.759 mph (R), 20 laps, $10,000 2. (2) Rocky Moran, Jr., Coto de Caza, Calif., 20, $6,500 3. (6) Thomas Schie, Norway, 20, $4,000 4. (11) Rino Mastronardi, Italy, 20, $2,500 5. (8) Steven Rikert, Rhinebeck, N.Y., 20, $1,800 6. (17) Derek Hill, Santa Monica, Calif., 20, $1,500 7. (15) Leandro Larrosa, Argentina, 20, $1,300 8. (5) Tim Moser, Ventura Calif., 20, $1,200 9. (22) Philippe Siffert, Switzerland, 20, $1,500 10. (21) G.J. Mennen, New Vernon, N.J., 20, $1,000 11. (18) Skip Streets, Manhattan Beach, Calif., 20, $800 12. (19) Carlo Bonetti, Brasil, 20, $1,200 13. (26) Michael Kratz, Germany, 20, $600 14. (24) Jarrett Boon, Chandler, Ariz., 20, $500 15. (27) Patsy DiFilippo, Apollo, Pa., 20, $500 16. (13) Bryan Selby, Alpine, Calif., 20, $500 17. (16) Nick OSullivan, 19,, $500 18. (3) Tony Renna, Deland, Fla., 8, accident, $500 19. (7) Jeff Bucknum, Novato, Calif., 8, accident, $500 20. (20) John McCaig, Canada, 8, accident, $500 21. (1) Fredrik Larsson, Sweden, 8, accident, $500 22. (23) Kym Fontana, Houston, Texas, 7, accident, $500 23. (12) Seiji Ara, Japan, 4, accident, $500 24. (9) Andres Felipe Gomez, Colombia, 2, accident, $500 25. (14) Memo Gidley, San Rafael, Calif., 2, accident, $500 26. (10) Chris Mennninga, Pella, Iowa, 1, accident, $500 27. (25) Art Coia, Barrington, R.I., 1, accident, $500

Time of race: 30 minutes, 04.420 seconds Winning speed: 97.759 mph (R) Distance: 20 laps, 50.80 miles Margin of Victory: 2.050 seconds Most Progressive Driver: Siffert, 22nd to 9th Lap leaders: Boss, 1 - 20

qualifying session summaries are availabe on the unofficial Skip Barber Racing WWW site: http://www.albany.edu/~gr743

Points following round 6: 1. Fredrik Larsson 79 2. Rino Mastronardi 63 3. Tim Moser 62 4. Thomas Schie 59 5. Derek Hill 54 6. Tony Renna 45 7. Jeff Bucknum 42 8. Bryan Selby 38 9. Geoff Boss 33 10.Seiji Ara 33 Next race: Sears Point Raceway, Sonoma, Calif., July 14

for more information on the Skip Barber Racing School or the Barber Dodge Pro Series email to : SPEED@SKIPBARBER.COM

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series OPENWHEEL