Las Vegas Nevada, August 11, 2002 - Peter Zarcades of Team Las Vegas set a new qualifying record for ACRL Super Sports 2000 cars at Las Vegas Motor Speedway Sunday, clocking in at 1:20.618 seconds. Unfortunately, that was the end of his good luck...
Las Vegas Nevada, August 11, 2002 - Peter Zarcades of Team Las Vegas set a new qualifying record for ACRL Super Sports 2000 cars at Las Vegas Motor Speedway Sunday, clocking in at 1:20.618 seconds. Unfortunately, that was the end of his good luck for the day. His car would not start on the grid for the parade lap, so Zarcades was placed at the back of the pack, leaving John Ostlund of Team Fresno alone on the front row for the start. Ostlund made the most of his good fortune, surging into the lead at the green flag closely pursued by Team Hollywood drivers John Lombardo, Jr. and Fiorenzo Tirinnanzi. The top three ran nose to tail until Tirinnanzi passed Lombardo for second on lap five, while Zarcades carved his way up through the field to third on the sixth circuit. The battle for fifth was also hot and heavy, with Fresno's Brad Krause and Denver's Marvin Jones locked in battle the whole race. Jones got by for the position on lap six, but Krause ran in his draft the rest of the way, trying in vain to find a way by. Jay Messenger pitted his Team San Diego ride shortly after the green with a suspension problem, and teammate John Cavanaugh dropped to the back with a sour-sounding engine possibly a fouled plug. Cavanaugh regained speed and managed to work his way back up to sixth by the checker, maintaining his lead in the Rookie points chase. George Nolte of Team Denver came home in eighth. Meanwhile, Zarcades was in hot pursuit of Lombardo for third, but overcooked it on an overtaking move into turn five, the entrance to the infield courts. He spun off and killed the engine, then was unable to re-light the fire in the engine compartment. Since he was stalled dangerously close to the course, the pace car came out while safety crews towed him to a safer spot. Unfortunately, they were unable to do so in time, and the race ended under caution.
The extreme heat ended the Sports 2000 race early, with both competitors pitting early and taking their cars behind the wall. Fred Michael, by virtue of completing five laps to Fresno teammate David Ferguson's four, took the Sports 2000 victory, his first ACRL win. "I wanted my teammate to get the win, " said Ferguson on the Victory stand. "This team concept is what I like best about ACRL. We all help each other." Michael's victory was the first ACRL win for a Reynard chassis.
Team Fresno combined Ostlund's win, Krause's fifth, and Michael's ninth place finishes to accumulate 247 points for the team victory. The ACRL series, using a unique team racing concept, races Cosworth-powered Super Sports 2000 and Ford-engined Sports 2000 cars, with drivers required to run Hoosier ACRL-stamped R-45 compound tires and Union 76 110 Octane Leaded Racing Fuel.