Virginia (VIR): Saturday race summary

Scharf Takes Saturday Pro Spec Racer At VIRginia ALTON, Va. (October 26, 2002) --Keith Scharf, of Kirkwood, Mo., won Round Eight SCCA Pro Racing Pro Spec Racer race at VIRginia International Raceway. Warren Stilwell, of Hartville, Ohio, and...

Scharf Takes Saturday Pro Spec Racer At VIRginia

ALTON, Va. (October 26, 2002) --Keith Scharf, of Kirkwood, Mo., won Round Eight SCCA Pro Racing Pro Spec Racer race at VIRginia International Raceway. Warren Stilwell, of Hartville, Ohio, and Chris Funk, of Independence , Mo., completed the top-three.

In a bizarre moment, polesitter, Richard Spicer, pulled off in turn one on the pace lap when a tire fell off. With the open position beside him, Chris Current held the lead into turn one on the opening lap. As the lap progressed, a battle ensued for the lead, with Stilwell, in the No. 28 Stilwell Racing Spec Racer, going to the point.

In what would become a race-long battle, Scharf immediately began pressuring Stilwell for the lead. With the long straighaways, Scharf, in the No. 82 Tech Hyper-V Spec Racer, and Stilwell used the draft to swap the lead numerous times, with several cars joining the fight throughout the race. On the penultimate lap, Funk, driving the No. 0 Pearl Street Brewery Spec Racer, moved into second place, following Scharf as he passed Stilwell for the lead. The last lap featured some great passes and Funk and Stilwell driving side-by-side around most of the track. At the checkered flag, Scharf captured his first win in 2002, 0.850-second ahead of Stilwell, who crossed the finish line side-by-side with Funk. The win reduces Stilwell's lead in the championship to 22 points over Scharf and gives Team Buffalo the Tayo Edge R/C Pro spec Racer Team Championship race win.

"That was really fun," said Scharf, who won at VIR in 2001. "I think Warren [Stilwell] made a mistake in the Oak Tree turn, which allowed me to take the lead on the last lap, but the biggest thing was Chris [Funk] and Warren battled the rest of the lap allowing to build a small gap."

"I thought I had a great car to win," said Stilwell. "The straights are so long, it's hard break the draft and build a gap."

"You can't ask for better group of guys to race with," said Funk. "I wanted to win, but wasn't going to hurt Keith's [Scharf] chances at the championship."

Completing the top-five were Shawn Morrison, of Conway, N.H., and Nathan Offutt, of Clearwater, Fla. Rob Stewart, of York, Pa., earned the KML Greased Lightning Award for passing the most cars in the race.

Following post-race technical inspection, Scharf was penalized $1,000 for a non-compliant part on his car.

Sunday's race, the second race in the VIR weekend doubleheader, is set to take the green flag at 4:00 p.m. (Eastern). For more information, visit the Pro Spec Racer series website at www.sccapro.com/srfps.

-scca pro racing-

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Series SCCA
Drivers Richard Spicer , Nathan Offutt , Chris Current , Rob Stewart