MCDONOUGH WINS EXCITING F2000 CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES SEASON-OPENER The reigning champion narrowly edged Byers at the checkered flag ALTON, VA (April 14, 2007) - Matt McDonough commenced his 2007 F2000 Championship Series campaign in fine fashion on...
MCDONOUGH WINS EXCITING F2000 CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES SEASON-OPENER
The reigning champion narrowly edged Byers at the checkered flag
ALTON, VA (April 14, 2007) - Matt McDonough commenced his 2007 F2000 Championship Series campaign in fine fashion on Saturday, winning Round One at Virginia International Raceway. Joining the GTP Motorsports driver on the podium following a very entertaining race were series rookies Jason Byers and Terrick Mansur.
With the grid for the opening F2000 Championship Series race of the season having been determined via an exciting qualifying session earlier in the day, the series competitors rolled on-course under an overcast sky on Saturday afternoon. Following one pace lap around the fast VIR road course, the green flag waved to get the racing action underway. Getting a less than ideal launch from the pole position, McDonough immediately fell back to third, with Byers and Mansur taking over the fight for the lead. With battles for position occurring throughout the 37-car field, the top-five was Byers, Mansur, McDonough, Noah Bystrom and Jesse Yorrio at the completion of lap one. Attacking the fast undulating road course, Byers was able to build a small gap on Mansur over the course of the first few laps. This would be short lived however, as both Mansur and McDonough were back within striking distance by lap six. Running nose-to-tail, the trio engaged in a very entertaining dice for the win, with each driver taking a turn at the front. Not to be out done, the battle for fourth involving Bystrom and Yorrio, as well as the fight for seventh between Juliana Gonzalez, Keegan Van Sicklen and Brent Gilkes was proving very entertaining lap after lap. As the 14-lap race entered its final stages, the fight for the win became a two-car affair, when Mansur went off-course to avoid contact as the leaders encountered lapped traffic. McDonough and Byers having previously battled one another for wins in other series, ran nose-to-tail the remainder of the race. At the checkered flag, McDonough captured the win over the St. Clair Motorsports driver by a mere 0.278s. Mansur behind the wheel of an Andersen Racing car joined the duo on the podium in his first series race. Completing the top-five in Round One were Andersen Racing rookie Bystrom and Yorrio in a Piper engineering car.
The F2000 Championship Series competitors return to the 3.27-mile road course on Sunday for the second day of racing in the season-opening doubleheader. Qualifying for Round Two will commence at 12:15 p.m. ET, with the 14-lap race scheduled to get underway at 3:30 p.m. ET.