Mike Vincec starts 2009 season with a podium in Stars Disappointment in Skip Barber Series Stouffville, Ontario (April 11, 2009) - Cameron Motorsports lead driver seventeen year old Mike Vincec started the season in defense of his ...
Mike Vincec starts 2009 season with a podium in Stars
Disappointment in Skip Barber Series
Stouffville, Ontario (April 11, 2009) - Cameron Motorsports lead driver seventeen year old Mike Vincec started the season in defense of his 2008 championship in the Stars Of Karting series in fine form. He would earn pole and record strong heat races on his way to a second-place finish in the final. A good start to the 2009 championship run. Two weeks later at Sebring, Mike would not fare as well in the opening round of the Skip Barber National series.
At the Stars of Karting event in Ocala, Mike came out of the gate with a championship repeat in mind. He and tuner Trevor Wickens had the Cameron Motorsports CRG running in top form through opening practice and Mike would need just five laps to secure the pole by .077 seconds. Stars of Karting runs three heat races to set the starting grid for the pre-final and Mike would come home second in the first two but a mechanical issue took him out of heat three. This set him fourth on the grid. Mike would battle for the lead making his move from second when going through the hairpin neither of the two drivers would give way and made contact. Mike recovered after the incident to finish fourth in the pre-final.
Setting up on the outside of row two for the twenty-five lap final, the Stouffville, Ontario teen was in a tight battle for position throughout the race. He would make it to second place and once again, set the fastest laps of the race. Mike ended the day on the second step of the podium. With points awarded for both the pre-final and final, Vincec sits first overall in the championship chase after one round.
The next round of the Stars of Karting Championship is the East Division event at New Castle Motorsports Park in New Castle, Indiana, June 29-31.
Following Ocala, Mike made his way to Sebring Florida for the first round of the Skip Barber National Series. This series features Mazda-powered open-wheel formula cars and is considered the next step up the racing ladder for those coming out of karting. Mike was awarded a scholarship to compete in this series based on his 2008 Stars of Karting Championship.
Mike was already familiar with the cars having competed in a regional series in 2008 and the weekend started off well through practice. It all came apart in qualifying however when two cars would spin in front of Mike. With contact and his car badly damaged, Mike could not continue the session and had as yet, not recorded a complete hot lap. This would put him at the back of the twenty-three car starting grid for race one.
"It is not the best way to start your season, especially when the official report shows you were an innocent victim when two guys would just not give each other any room." commented Vincec. "I now had to move to another car and basically start over and fight my way from the back of the field. We'll do the best we can and go for points. It is after all, only the first race of the season."
Mike would work his way to eighteenth in the opening race, felt good about the car and liked his chances in round two qualifying. Unfortunately for him, qualifying for race two was cancelled due to a heavy fog that rolled over the track just as the cars were going out. Series officials then decided to use round one qualifying results to set the grid for race two, thereby putting Mike at the rear of the pack again. He would finish the race in fifteenth.
"Even though I had a good car today, it is extremely tough to fight your way forward from the back of the field. I am really disappointed but will just have to focus my efforts on the next event."
The next round of the Skip Barber National Series takes place April 24 to 26 at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Virginia.
-credit: Level Ten Communications