SURPRISE NEW NAME AT THE TOP OF THE TIME SHEETS IN FIRST STAR MAZDA CHAMPIONSHIP PRACTICE SESSION AT MAZDA RACEWAY LAGUNA SECA Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca / Oct. 17 -- After most of a season of seeing the same half-dozen names at the top of the...
SURPRISE NEW NAME AT THE TOP OF THE TIME SHEETS IN FIRST STAR MAZDA CHAMPIONSHIP PRACTICE SESSION AT MAZDA RACEWAY LAGUNA SECA
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca / Oct. 17 -- After most of a season of seeing the same half-dozen names at the top of the time sheets in practice, and race results, a new name has popped up -- Richard Kent, an English karting champion with a background in the European Formula Palmer Audi series. Driving the #77 Andersen Racing / Traka Mazda, Kent -- in his first time at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and his first outing in a Star Mazda race car -- set a fast lap of 1:12.074.
This is almost 3/10ths of a second clear of the best lap set by championship points leader, and four-time race winner, American John Edwards. He turned a 1:21.373 in The #7 AIM Autosport/ Mobil 1 Mazda. In third was another 4-race winner, Irishman Peter Dempsey, currently third in the championship battle. He turned a lap of 1:21.615 in the #21 Andersen Racing/LotusWorks/ Center Jewellers.ie/Quayside.ie/ Allied Building Products Mazda.
In fourth was another American, Joel Miller, with a lap of 1:22.090 in the #20 JDC Motorsports / Mazda / K&N Air Filters Mazda. Miller is the 2007 Skip Barber Pro Series Champion and is racing in the 2008 Star Mazda Championship courtesy of the MAZDASPEED Motorsport Driver Development Ladder scholarship. Rounding out the top-5 was another unfamiliar name, an occasional competitor who usually runs in the Star Mazda West Coast regional series, Patrick O'Neill. Driving the #64 Worldspeed Motorsports / O'Neill Construction/ Molecule Mazda, he set a time of 1:22.179.