FMAZDA: Series round five Laguna Seca summary

Formula Mazdas Screaming at the SCCA Spring Sports Car Festival SFR Region Vintage plays host to series at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca Fifteen Formula Mazdas took to their spiritual home track Mazda Raceway this weekend to contest round five of...

Formula Mazdas Screaming at the SCCA Spring Sports Car Festival
SFR Region Vintage plays host to series at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

Fifteen Formula Mazdas took to their spiritual home track Mazda Raceway this weekend to contest round five of the 2009 Molecule Formula Mazda Challenge. The series was able to secure nearly an hour of on track time each day, and the course was green the entire weekend. "The competition was fierce and the weather was unbelievable," stated Series Official Ben Hettema.

"We have to thank SFR SCCA and Mike Smith for getting us into this event, and also the other competitors who kept us all entertained with great racing machines of the past," added World Speed Motorsports team owner Telo Stewart. Nearly 100 historic race and sports cars entered in six race groups that spanned nearly every era of motorsports history.

In morning qualifying in the Pro FM class Chuck Hulse took the top slot followed by Stan Kohls and Larry Schnur. Andy Brown, who had never been on the course before this month, secured the fourth place position. Michael Guasch who actually posted the fastest time in qualifying was not running for points as he was running in full Star Mazda pro series spec which was not Molecule Formula Mazda legal at this event. In Standard FM Matt Trudell took the pole position followed by Stew Tabak and Bill Weaver.

In the Pro FM race Hulse got a great start and built a comfortable lead while Stan Kohls, Larry Schnur, and Andy Brown ran within feet of each other from the green flag until the checkered. The Standard FM battle was between pole sitter Trudell, Bill Weaver, Derry O'Donovan, and Jim Mali who all ran in the lead pack and traded places multiple times. When the final flag fell Weaver was on top followed by O'Donovan, and Mali.

Pro Formula Mazda Podium
Chuck Hulse 1st
Stan Kohls 2nd
Larry Schnur 3rd

Standard Formula Mazda Podium
Bill Weaver 1st
Derry O'Donovan 2nd
Jim Mali 3rd

The Pro Formula Mazdas are back at it again at round six at Miller Motorsports Park on May 16th, while the Standard FM racers have their next event at Thunderhill Raceway Park May 30-31.

Other interesting weekend notes:

* Guest visitors included Jim Graber, Christian Miller, and Pieter Rossi all who have raced with many of the series competitors in the past. Pieter's son Alexander won the most recent Formula BMW World Championship and is scheduled to test in Formula One later this season.

* Rick Cameron from JDC attended the event and worked with Michael Guasch on the new suspension and wing package that the Star Mazda Series introduced this season. Guasch is currently leading the 2009 Star Mazda Masters Championship.

* Dane Cameron who won the Star Mazda Championship in 2007, and who is currently racing a Mazda RX8 in Grand Am, was at the event as a personal coach to Chuck Hulse (the 2008 Star Mazda Masters Champion)

* Standing Start coaches Grant Ryley and John Olsen were working with Andy Brown and Larry Schnur.

* Mark Felsen of Denver Colorado raced his Pro Mazda in MFMC and also competed in his Vintage Formula Vee at the event.

* FM polesitter Matt Trudell debuted his new livery which is based on the Gulf LeMans cars of the 70's.

The Molecule Formula Mazda Challenge is a regional Star Mazda series that keeps costs in check by limiting travel to a general region and racing spec open wheel cars. There are three classes that are welcomed to compete in the events; The Pro Formula Mazda, the Standard Formula Mazda, and the Formula E powered by Mazda.

The MOLECULE Formula Mazda Challenge forges into its fifth consecutive season as an officially sanctioned NASA race group. The year end cash awards have grown to over $18,000 for the season with the addition of support from MAZDASPEED. Returning series partners include Star Race Cars, Goodyear, and title sponsor Molecule Labs.

-credit:www.formulamazdachallenge.com

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About this article
Series Road racing
Drivers Grant Ryley , Dane Cameron , Chuck Hulse , Chris Miller , Mike Smit