RACE: National Runoffs: Goodyear racing preview

SEVEN GOODYEAR-SHOD RACERS VIE FOR SCCA TRIPLE CROWN TOPEKA, Kan. (Oct. 8, 2006) -- The Sports Car Club of America's National Championship Runoffs attracts racers from every corner of the United States. They come to...

SEVEN GOODYEAR-SHOD RACERS VIE FOR SCCA TRIPLE CROWN

TOPEKA, Kan. (Oct. 8, 2006) -- The Sports Car Club of America's National Championship Runoffs attracts racers from every corner of the United States. They come to be a part of the annual celebration of sheer driving talent, mechanical aptitude and good old American ingenuity.

This year the Runoffs will be held Oct. 7-15 at Heartland Park Topeka. Testing begins on the seventh and the racing starts on the 13th.

The winners of the 25 Runoffs races are crowned SCCA national champions and 13 drivers have a further opportunity to become SCCA Triple Crown winners.

If the event is a competition between drivers, it is also a competition between the world's largest automotive corporations. That includes the most successful tiremaker in Runoffs history, Goodyear.

"It's the Olympic Games of amateur road racing," said Bob Shaffer, Goodyear's marketing manager for sports car racing. "And we love those gold medals."

Drivers earn to right to compete at the Runoffs by finishing in the top 10 in their regional competition during the season. The SCCA estimates that about 8,000 drivers were eligible to compete in regional races this season. A total of 2,000 drivers become eligible for the Runoffs by finishing 10th or better in class in their region. Organizers expect 750-800 drivers will make their way to the Runoffs for a chance of the national title.

The national championship is the crowning achievement all racers strive for. But the Triple Crown, which goes to any driver who wins a divisional title, plus their class in the SCCA Chicago Region June Sprints at Road America and then their race at the Runoffs, is a bonus opportunity that few ever achieve.

This year there are 13 drivers with a chance at the Triple Crown and, as usual, most of them race on Goodyear tires. That means that about three percent of the drivers at the Runoffs will win a national championship but less than two percent even have a chance at a Triple Crown.

The stringent rules regarding the construction of the cars and engine displacement ensure that winning an SCCA national title or a Triple Crown are arguably the toughest achievements for an American sports car racer.

The Goodyear-shod drivers bidding for a Triple Crown include John Hill in D Sport Racer (Seattle, Wash.), Scott Rettich in Formula Mazda (Camden, Ohio), Brad Stout in Formula Vee (St. Louis, Mo.), Brian Schofield in Spec Racer Ford (Lakeland, Fla.), Bill Baten in Touring 2 (Indianapolis, Ind.), and Ed Hosni in American Sedan (Novi, Mich.).

More information on Goodyear Racing is available at www.racegoodyear.com. More information on the SCCA is available at www.scca.com. More information on Heartland Park Topeka is available at www.hpt.com.

-credit: goodyear

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About this article
Series SCCA
Drivers Brad Stout , Bill Baten , Scott Rettich