JDC MOTORSPORTS VISITS THE STAR MAZDA PODIUM ONCE AGAIN IN GEORGIA Miller captured his seventh top-three result of the season at Road Atlanta, while Kraut visited victory lane for a third time BRASELTON, GA (October 3, 2008) -- JDC...
JDC MOTORSPORTS VISITS THE STAR MAZDA PODIUM ONCE AGAIN IN GEORGIA
Miller captured his seventh top-three result of the season at Road Atlanta, while Kraut visited victory lane for a third time
BRASELTON, GA (October 3, 2008) -- JDC MotorSports continued its quest for a second consecutive Star Mazda Championship at Road Atlanta on October 3 with yet another superb display by its quartet of drivers. Rookie sensation Joel Miller remained a championship favorite with a runner-up finish in Round 11, while Gerry Kraut edged his teammate Chuck Hulse for his third Masters win of the season. Chris Hundley joined the JDC crew for the first time and enjoyed a solid series debut with a 15th place finish.
Racing at the high-speed road course just north of Atlanta, Ga., Miller was among the drivers to watch right from the get go. The Californian had been among the quickest in testing and practice and narrowly missed out on the pole position in the traditional split qualifying session, lining up P2 for the standing start on Friday afternoon. When the action did get underway on race day, the No. 20 MAZDASPEED/K&N Air Filters/Sparco/Redline Oil/JDC MotorSports driver vaulted into the lead and appeared headed towards his second win of the season. However, multiple full-course cautions not only allowed his competitors to close the gap, but also resulted in a late-race incident that pushed him back to fifth. Overcoming the setback, Miller worked his way back to second place by the time the checkered flag waved in spite of a rapidly deflating tire. In earning his seventh podium finish in 11 races, Miller travels to the season-finale and his home track of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca leading the championship fight by 11 points.
"What can I say, the JDC Motorsports team gave me another capable car today," stated Miller, who is contesting the 2009 season thanks to the MAZDASPEED Motorsports Driver Development Ladder program. "The cautions did not fall our way, but even with that, I think we could have battled for the win if the tire didn't go flat."
JDC MotorSports co-owner Kraut ensured that the Minnesota-based team once again left the latest round of the Star Mazda Championship with at least one first place trophy. Starting P15 for the 45-minute race after showing good speed in the days leading up to the lights going green, the No. 55 Dougherty & Co./Dougherty Funding LLC/Redline Oil/JDC MotorSports race pilot enjoyed one of his best races to date. Kraut remained the Masters class leader from start-to-finish, steadily working his up the charts as the race progressed, eventually crossing the stripe as the class winner in 11th overall. Kraut was up as high as eighth before he was forced into a spin to avoid contact during one of the wild late-race restarts. In scoring his third win of the 2008 campaign, the Minnesotan clinched second in the Masters Series title chase.
After securing the Masters Series crown via a pair wins in the previous Star Mazda event, Hulse traveled to Road Atlanta seeking to build on his championship-winning season. Much like he has done all season long, the Californian went increasingly quicker as the event progressed. Starting 18th for the standing start, Hulse followed his teammates up the charts with each passing lap. When the checkered flag waved, Hulse was 12th overall.
Making his Star Mazda debut with JDC MotorSports at Road Atlanta, Hundley showed continued progress each time he got behind the wheel. Battling drivers who had full year's experience under their belts, the longtime open-wheel competitor from California drove a clean and productive race on Friday afternoon. Piloting the No. 18 Redline Oil/JDC MotorSports entry, Hundley advanced seven places, taking the checkered flag in 15th place.
Next up for the JDC MotorSports Star Mazda Championship drivers and crew will be the 2008 Star Mazda Championship season-finale on October 18, with Round 12 going at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Northern California.