Road America: Andersen Racing race report

Andersen Racing's Trio Has an Exciting Race At Road America Saturday ELKHART LAKE, Wis., Aug. 11 - Long after the results of Saturday's Star Mazda race at Road America are forgotten, the three Andersen Racing drivers who competed in it will ...

Andersen Racing's Trio Has an Exciting Race At Road America Saturday

ELKHART LAKE, Wis., Aug. 11 - Long after the results of Saturday's Star Mazda race at Road America are forgotten, the three Andersen Racing drivers who competed in it will remember the exciting 45-minute clash on the famous 4.048-mile, 14-turn road course.

Jonathan Goring, who drives the Andersen Racing No. 14 sponsored by the Skip Barber Racing School, Alfas Unlimited and NPA Graphics, drove brilliantly despite bent suspension from two incidents, the first of which caused him to do a 360-degree spin on lap six while running third, dropping him to 13th place.

He was back in the top 10 by lap 10 and continued to march forward. During that drive he had another incident that proved to be even more costly when the provisional results were posted, but he was able to soar through the field and went from eighth to third on a restart on lap 15. At that point he came under attack by point leader Dane Cameron, and finally relinquished third on the 19th and last lap.

Although the checkered had dropped, not all the fireworks were over. The driver who led every lap of the race, James Davison, was penalized for allegedly blocking and went from first to fourth in the rundown. Goring, of Norfolk, Conn., was also penalized for the contact in his second incident, and ended up 24th in the provisional rundown after starting sixth.

The team has appealed that ruling to IMSA.

"We've reviewed the video evidence, and Jonathan did nothing wrong," said team owner Dan Andersen. "We're appealing it to IMSA, and we hope that Jonathan's podium finish will be shown on the final results sheet."

The two other drivers for the Fairfield, N.J.-based team in this event, Jonny Baker and Phil Saville, started 12th and 13th, respectively. Saville, of Oak Brook, Ill., ran in the top 10 for many laps with his No. 22, which is sponsored by New York Jewelers of Chicago, NVG Residential, Mac Marketing & Advertising Corp. and Chicago Indoor Racing. Unfortunately he was hit in the rear by another competitor on lap 17 of the 19-lap race, spun, and dropped back to 20th place. He regrouped to finish 15th.

Baker had the worst results but the best story. He completed only two laps before he backed into a wall under a yellow flag after he ran over a medical bag the safety crew left on the track while assisting the drivers who crashed to bring out the yellow initially.

The personable young man from Farnham Common, Buckinghamshire, England ended up in 26th and last place, but was still able to laugh when engineer Glenn Phillips, who was examining his damaged car, told him he supposed this event was in the bag.

The race will be shown on SPEED at 3 p.m. Eastern time on Aug. 18. Ron White ended up getting the victory, with the other podium spots going to Cameron and Nick Haye.

The action now switches to Canada for the series, which is presented by Goodyear. The next race is coming right up Aug. 18-19 at Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, followed by an event at Mosport International Raceway in Bowmanville, Ontario Aug. 24-25. No Star Mazda races are scheduled for September. There are two races on the schedule for October: Road Atlanta in Braselton, Ga., on Oct. 4-5 and the season finale at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif., on Oct. 19-20.

Andersen Racing is committed to offering a program that gives up-and-coming drivers the proper training to reach open-wheel racing's major leagues. It fields multiple cars in the F2000 Championship Series, the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear and the Indy Pro Series. It is the official development team of Rahal Letterman Racing for the latter series. More information on the team is available on its Web site at andersenracingteam.com. The Star Mazda Web site is at starmazda.com.

Post-race quotes follow:

Jonathan Goring: "I worked really hard to get heat in my tires and my brakes for the start, and I was able to go from sixth to third initially.

"Natacha [Gachnang] tried passing me in Turn 5, and we had contact that bent my suspension. I did a 360 spin, downshifted, and got going again.

"After that I had the bit in my teeth. All I was thinking about were points. I drove the car up to fourth place. I had a little contact with Steve Welk that bent my suspension a little more, but the car was great.

"The contact happened going into 8.  He's saying I hit him, but actually he
turned into me.  The officials will review it and make their decision.

"Everybody was bumper to bumper for that last restart. I could see when the leader accelerated, so I was able to get a run on a lot of people. I got two or three positions on the restart, and I got some others entering 5. I passed Cameron for third by going in the grass off Turn 8. That was a really good pass; I felt good about it. That's how I went from eighth to third again.

"Then I got wide in Turn 5, and he got around me again on the last lap. I didn't want to press it; I didn't want to mess up a good finish, and fourth was good considering I had contact twice and spun out.

"The Andersen Racing team did a great job. Before the suspension got bent, I could have won the race. It was frustrating, but I think I did a good job of making the best of it."

Jonny Baker: "We got a pretty good start. Phil had a good start too. Then Phil got squeezed. I got around him, and then I passed Charles Anti. Then a full-course caution came out for an incident in Turn 7.

"One of the safety teams left a medical bag in the middle of the track. The car in front of me clipped it, and then I hit it and it exploded. The next thing I knew I was backing into the wall.

"I know you probably think I'm making this up, but I'm not. I feel like Perry McCarthy.

"I thought it was a nose cone initially, but it was a medical bag. The car in front of me clipped it, and I finished it up. It happened between 7 and 8.

"The car was really quick in a straight line. I was very happy with the car. Now we'll go on to Trois-Rivieres. I'm determined to improve my street course game, so I'm really looking forward to running there."

Phil Saville: "I got drilled from behind in the braking zone in Turn 5 around lap 17. I spun out, went to the rear, and came back up. I drove hard, but I was too far behind to get back into the top 10.

"The car was fantastic; the Andersen team did a great job. I had fun, and that's what matters!"

-credit: ar

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Pro Mazda
Drivers Steve Welk , Perry McCarthy , James Davison , Ron White , Charles Anti , Dane Cameron , Phil Saville , Jonathan Goring , Jonny Baker , Nick Haye
Teams HART