Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway almost 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.
Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.
Be sure to tune in for his sports talk program, Thursday Night Thunder, where he discusses the latest in motorsports news with drivers, crew members, and fans. The show takes place (almost) every Thursday at 8:00 pm EST on the Speedway Digest Radio Network.
Contact Adam: Email
SCCA’s Summit Racing Equipment Road Racing program will see two new classes in 2020, one that combines existing cars into a new class, and the other created to invite a different “type” of racecar out to Sports Car Club of America® events.
The SCCA® Club Racing Board (CRB) has created a new Formula X (FX) class intended for winged, open-wheel formula cars of modest power and performance below that of Formula 1000 or Formula Atlantic vehicles. Cars falling within Formula X for 2020 include Formula Mazda, Formula 4 and tube frame USF2000 vehicles. This change means Formula Mazda will no longer be its own car class at SCCA Road Racing events.
Formula X was designed to include cars built in significant numbers, but not quite sufficient enough to populate their own class; as well as those vehicles not constructed to existing SCCA General Competition Rules formulas but which still meet FX class criteria. According to SCCA CRB Chairman Peter Keane, FX will be deployed in 2020 at all Summit Racing Equipment Road Racing Regional, U.S. Majors Tour and Hoosier Racing Tire Super Tour events, and is a Runoffs-eligible class.
“The CRB is tasked with looking after the overall health of all SCCA competition classes, including formula cars,” Keane said. “We see Formula X as a way to enhance formula car participation in Club racing. It serves as a means for cars used in pro series to get involved in SCCA Club events, and can function as an incubator for the growth of new formulas that may one day have a specific competition classification.”
The second new SCCA car class added by the CRB for 2020 is named Prototype X (PX) and will also be deployed at all SCCA Road Racing Regional, U.S. Majors Tour and Hoosier Racing Tire Super Tour events. Similar to the GT-X class created in 2019, PX is open to various prototype vehicles that have been competing in U.S. road racing over the past several years. Deanna Flanagan, SCCA’s Road Racing Director, said examples include Daytona Prototype and Le Mans Prototype cars, as well as older IMSA GTP and Camel Light race cars. The PX class, however, will not be Runoffs-eligible in 2020.
“Across the country there are a number of competition-ready cars, now privately owned, that fall within SCCA’s new Prototype X classification,” Flanagan said. “The idea behind creation of Prototype X is to provide a way for these beautiful machines to participate at SCCA road races. It’s another way SCCA makes itself accessible to motorsports enthusiasts who love to have fun with cars.”
Another change in 2020 for the SCCA Summit Racing Equipment Road Racing program includes Formula Enterprises (FE) now being eligible only at Regional events, a development communicated two years ago with creation of the Formula Enterprises 2 (FE2) class. Also, Formula 1000 (FB) has been folded into the Formula Atlantic (FA) competition class.
The 57th SCCA National Championship Runoffs®, being held Oct. 3-11 at Road America in Wisconsin, will feature three days of testing, three days of qualifying, and three days of racing. Runoffs qualification criteria has changed for 2020, so those intending to compete for a National Championship should check SCCA.com for the latest guidelines. The 26 Runoffs-eligible classes for 2020 are as follows:
American Sedan® B-Spec
E Production Formula 500
Formula Atlantic® Formula Continental®
Formula Enterprises 2 Formula F
F Production H Production
Formula Vee Formula X
Prototype 1 Prototype 2
Spec Miata Spec Racer Ford Gen3
Super Touring® Lite Super Touring® Under
Touring 1 Touring 2
Touring 3 Touring 4
The Sports Car Club of America®, Inc., founded in 1944, is a 67,500-member motorsports organization that incorporates all facets of autocross, rally and road racing at both Club and professional levels. With headquarters in Topeka, Kansas, the SCCA annually sanctions around 2,000 events through its 115 Regions and subsidiary divisions. Much of the SCCA’s activities are made possible with support from the following Official Partners: Hagerty, the Official Insurance Partner of SCCA; Hawk Performance, the Official Brake Products of SCCA; Sunoco, the Official Fuel of SCCA; and Tire Rack, the Official Tire Retailer of SCCA. To learn more, please visit www.scca.com.
The Northern Conference 2020 SCCA® U.S. Majors Tour® competition calendar has been released. A total of seven weekends, 14 races in all, make up the schedule that runs from May through August and visits six different circuits.
Two events in May begin the Northern Conference’s 2020 schedule. First stop is at Blackhawk Farms Raceway in South Beloit, Illinois, followed by a visit to GingerMan Raceway in South Haven, Michigan. Then it’s two consecutive visits to 2020 National Championship Runoff’s venue Road America, the first being the WeatherTech Chicago Region® June Sprints®, a Hoosier Racing Tire Super Tour weekend featuring racing legend Elliott Forbes-Robinson as Grand Marshal, and a second stop in July to the circuit in Wisconsin.
Action continues in July with a new date for the annual visit to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, which will again be a Hoosier Super Tour event this year. August then closes out the season with two race weekends, the first being at Grattan Raceway in Belding, Michigan, followed by the Northern Conference finale at Brainerd International Raceway in Minnesota.
As always, the calendar below is subject to change, but the current 2020 U.S. Majors Tour Northern Conference schedule is comprised of the following:
- May 2-3: Blackhawk Farms Raceway; S. Beloit, Illinois
- May 16-17: GingerMan Raceway; South Haven, Michigan
- June 12-14: Road America; Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin
(WeatherTech Chicago Region® June Sprints®)
- July 11-12: Road America; Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin
- July 17-19: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course; Lexington, Ohio
- August 22-23: Grattan Raceway; Belding, Michigan
- August 29-30: Brainerd International Raceway; Brainerd, Minnesota
Schedules for other SCCA U.S. Majors Tour Conferences will be published as they are finalized. Only SCCA Full Competition and SCCA Pro Racing License holders may register for U.S. Majors Tour or Hoosier Super Tour events. Again this year, both the U.S. Majors Tour and Hoosier Super Tour serve as pathways to the 2020 SCCA National Championship Runoffs® being held at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
The Sports Car Club of America®, Inc., founded in 1944, is a 67,500-member motorsports organization that incorporates all facets of autocross, rally and road racing at both Club and professional levels. With headquarters in Topeka, Kansas, the SCCA annually sanctions over 2,000 events through its 115 Regions and subsidiary divisions. Much of the SCCA’s activities are made possible with support from the following Official Partners: Hagerty, the Official Insurance Partner of SCCA; Hawk Performance, the Official Brake Products of SCCA; Sunoco, the Official Fuel of SCCA; and Tire Rack, the Official Tire Retailer of SCCA. To learn more, please visit www.scca.com.
Photo: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course is again on the Northern Conf. U.S. Majors Tour schedule, just a little later in the year.
Credit: Michael Berchak
American Flat Track announced today an Independence Day weekend of epic proportions. Its 2020 New York Short Track event at Weedsport Speedway will include Friday night AFT Singles racing, camping, pre-party and Fourth of July fun for the entire family.
The weekend will kick off with a Friday night event to include the ever-exciting AFT Singles class as well as amateur races as part of the Flat Track Futures series. The Friday festivities will include a fan zone with activities for children and an open paddock hour where fans can meet their favorite athletes. Tickets to the Friday night event will be $15 and can be purchased at www.americanflattrack.com.
Saturday's program will feature the AFT Singles once again, but joined by the AFT Production Twins and premier AFT SuperTwins classes for its third year of bar-to-bar high-speed New York Short Track action. This year's event will include even more vendors, a revamped Kids Zone and live music to keep the Independence Day crowd entertained into the evening.
Camping will once again be available for fans looking to bring family and friends down for a real party weekend at the races.
A variety of ticketing options are now available for the 2020 New York Short Track weekend, including the lowest price for advanced Saturday General Admission ever: just $25. Saturday's event will have Trackside Seating with all-day Paddock Access allowing the most-immersive fan experience. For the premium viewing option, fans are encouraged to check out the VIP Experience including food, beverage and access to an exclusive observation deck outside Turn 4 of the racetrack. Furthermore, all VIP passholders have all-day paddock access included with admission. Explore all the options and customize your Independence Day race weekend at www.americanflattrack.com.
American Flat Track will kick off its highly-anticipated 2020 season with the first-ever DAYTONA 200 and DAYTONA TT Doubleheader at Daytona International Speedway. It all kicks off at the peak of Daytona Bike Week on Saturday, March 14, 2020. Tickets start at just $35 online and are available for purchase now at www.americanflattrack.com.
For more information on American Flat Track visit www.americanflattrack.com.
To get the latest American Flat Track clothing and merchandise visit www.americanflattracker.com.
Last week's open testing at Sebring International Raceway provided yet another reminder as to the ultra-competitive nature of Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires. Four different drivers took turns atop the charts during the opening four out of five sessions at the 1.8-mile, 11-turn road course before Rasmus Lindh, 18, from Gothenburg, Sweden, turned the fastest lap of all for HMD Motorsports during a late flurry of activity this afternoon.
Lindh, 18, who looks set to graduate to the top step on the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires open-wheel ladder next season after finishing as runner-up in the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship and the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires in each of the last two years – both times to Kyle Kirkwood – turned a best lap of 55.9580 seconds, an average speed of 107.438 mph, just a couple of minutes before the checkered flag flew for the final time.
“HMD is a new team (to me) in Indy Lights, so we wanted to see how they worked,” said Lindh, who also tested an Indy Lights car with Andretti Autosport at Indianapolis in October. “The first day was all about getting used to how they did things, like the setup of the car and how we would work with the engineer. We put it all together this morning and were fastest straight away, and quickest at the end of the day. We have a very good feeling now. This is only my fourth day in the Indy Lights car so I feel I can improve – but everyone in the field feels that way, since we’re all rookies and most of the drivers are coming up from Indy Pro 2000. I feel as though I’m ready to move up to Indy Lights next year, though I need a little bit more time to get used to everything. The Road to Indy ladder is very good, the steps really prepare you as you move up.”
Kirkwood, 21, from Jupiter, Fla., ended the test just a couple of tenths shy of Lindh, at 56.1736, following his first experience in an Indy Lights car with defending champion team Andretti Autosport. Kirkwood, who was fastest of all during the second of three sessions on Wednesday, edged teammate and Indy Lights veteran Robert Megennis, from New York, N.Y., by just over a tenth of a second.
“It was a learning experience,” said Kirkwood. “It’s a much different car than the Tatuus, especially with the turbo, the much longer wheelbase and what feels like a very different tire compound. It seems as though you can drive the Dallara harder and find lap time that way. It’s more of a driver’s car.
“And this was my first time driving a real open-wheel car around Sebring. I live only 90 minutes away from here, but I haven’t driven here that much. It took me a session or two to get acclimated but now it comes naturally. Andretti clearly has a good baseline setup and we didn’t deviate much from that. We tried a few things so that I could get a feel for what changes did to the car. We were quickest all day even though the time wasn’t there in the last session, but we ran only one set of tires while HMD ran three. It was more about seat time for me, since this was my first time driving the car.”
Danial Frost,18, from Singapore, ended the test with the fourth fastest time, 56.3800, aboard a third Andretti Autosport Dallara-AER IL-15, narrowly ahead of Frenchman Tristan Charpentier, also for Andretti Autosport.
Frost had been fastest of all on Day One at 56.8616 seconds, although the top five – Frost, Megennis, Los Angeles-based Russian Nikita Lastochkin, who made an impressive debut for the Exclusive Autosport team, Lindh and Kirkwood – were all blanketed by just 0.1572-second.
“The two days here at Sebring were very successful,” said Frost. “On the first day we had the fastest time at the end of the day, and the second day was very positive as well. We have some places to improve to find those final tenths as this level of the Road to Indy is extremely competitive, but overall we’re very happy with the way the test went. Personally, I think I have significantly improved both physically and mentally since the Chris Griffis Test, and it shows in the results. It’s been a big jump since then.”
A total of nine drivers completed 1356 incident-free laps, with the top eight all within one second of Lindh’s benchmark time.
“It’s nice to come back, have experience and know what I’m doing,” said Megennis. “I have so much more confidence in myself and in the car, and a better understanding of what I need to do to go fast. You can maximize every lap you get. We tried some stuff with the car that we haven’t been able to try before, and we learned a lot. We treated this like a real test – I didn’t have to go out and figure out how to drive the car, we could work on things to use during the season to win more races.
“I’ve never done a second year in the same car before and now I’m able to really work on pinpointing every little mistake and get better. And [team manager] Don Lambert is awesome, as is the whole team. I’ve done a full year with them now and we can just work on improving everything. They understand what I need to go fast so it’s all working great.”
After turning the second fastest lap (to Lindh) this morning, Antonio Serravalle, from Montreal, Canada, ended the day sixth overall for HMD Motorsports, edging Lastochkin and third-generation racer Flinn Lazier, from Vail, Colo., for Belardi Auto Racing.
In addition to Exclusive Autosport, Jay Howard Driver Development also turned its first “official” laps during a sanctioned Indy Lights test with Christian Bogle, from Covington, La., in preparation for an anticipated series debut in 2021.
The next official outing for the Indy Lights field will be the traditional Spring Training on March 9 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, just a few days before the much-anticipated season-opener on the streets of St. Petersburg on March 13-15 in support of the NTT IndyCar Series.
The Northeast Conference 2020 SCCA® U.S. Majors Tour® competition calendar has been released. A total of seven weekends, 14 races in all, make up the schedule that runs from April through July and visits seven different circuits, which is one more than the previous year’s schedule.
It will be a roaring start for the Northeast Conference as the season begins with a Hoosier Racing Tire Super Tour at VIRginia International Raceway, followed by a stop at Summit Point Raceway in West Virginia to close out April. Then it’s off to Pennsylvania for two race weekends in May, the first being at Pittsburgh International Race Complex in Wampum and the second taking place at a “new” stop on this year’s Northeast Conference calendar -- Pocono Raceway in Long Pond.
A second Hoosier Super Tour for the Northeast Conference takes place in June at Watkins Glen International in New York. The racing season then closes out in July with a stop at Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park before the calendar wraps up at New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville.
As always, the calendar below is subject to change, but the current 2020 U.S. Majors Tour Northeast Conference schedule is comprised of the following:
- April 10-12; VIRginia International Raceway; Alton, Virginia
(Dual Southeast/Northeast Conference Event)
- April 25-26: Summit Point Raceway; Summit Point, West Virginia
- May 9-10: Pittsburgh International Race Complex; Wampum Pennsylvania
- May 23-24: Pocono Raceway; Long Pond, Pennsylvania
- June 19-21: Watkins Glen International; Watkins Glen, New York
- July 11-12: Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park; Thompson, Connecticut
- July 17-19: New Jersey Motorsports Park; Millville, New Jersey
All 2020 schedules for U.S. Majors Tour Conferences have now been published. Only SCCA Full Competition and SCCA Pro Racing License holders may register for U.S. Majors Tour or Hoosier Super Tour events. Again this year, both the U.S. Majors Tour and Hoosier Super Tour serve as pathways to the 2020 SCCA National Championship Runoffs® being held at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
The Sports Car Club of America®, Inc., founded in 1944, is a 67,500-member motorsports organization that incorporates all facets of autocross, rally and road racing at both Club and professional levels. With headquarters in Topeka, Kansas, the SCCA annually sanctions nearly 2,000 events through its 115 Regions and subsidiary divisions. Much of the SCCA’s activities are made possible with support from the following Official Partners: Hagerty, the Official Insurance Partner of SCCA; Hawk Performance, the Official Brake Products of SCCA; Sunoco, the Official Fuel of SCCA; and Tire Rack, the Official Tire Retailer of SCCA. To learn more, please visit www.scca.com.
Photo: Scenic VIRginia International Raceway opens the 2020 Northeast Conf. U.S. Majors Tour schedule
Credit: Jay Bonvouloir
American Flat Track returns to legendary New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday, June 13, 2020. The Laconia Short Track will once again bring another level of excitement to the 97th year of the historic Laconia Motorcycle Week. Tickets for this show stopping event are currently on sale at tickets.americanflattrack.com.
The inaugural Laconia Short Track event drew crowds of avid motorcyclists and race enthusiasts into NHMS to see the bar-banging 0.25-mile short track action.
Family-friendly activities including live music, vendor village and Kids Zone make the Laconia Short Track the perfect bike week activity for the whole family.
A variety of ticketing options are now available including the VIP Experience with complimentary food, beverage and access to an exclusive VIP viewing area outside Turn 1 of the racetrack. Furthermore, all VIP passholders have all-day paddock access included with admission. For fans in the General Admission area - where advance admission begins at just $25 - for the first time ever, purchase all-day behind-the-scenes access with the Paddock Access upgrade. Just $40 gets you into the pits for an up-close experience of all AFT race day action. Explore all the options and customize your Laconia Motorcycle Week race weekend at www.americanflattrack.com.
For more information on American Flat Track visit www.americanflattrack.com.
To get the latest American Flat Track clothing and merchandise visit www.americanflattracker.com.
From announcing new brands being eligible for Trans Am presented by Pirelli’s growing production-based classes (SGT and GT), to having several cars on display at prominent locations and having a strong driver and team representative presence at the show, the Trans Am Series is making a huge splash at the 32nd annual Performance Racing Industry trade show.
The PRI Trade Show, held in Indianapolis Dec. 12-14, is the epicenter of new racing technology with 1,100 exhibiting companies, and with more than 20 Trans Am partners promoting its program, the Trans Am Series footprint at the show is one of the largest in recent years.
The Trans Am Race Company is sharing booth space with SVRA, located in the Aisle 7000 Corridor near the PRI Service Desk and adjacent to the “Yellow” Hall. Trans Am Race Company’s John Clagett (President), Aaron Coalwell (Series Technical Director) and Ricky Brooks (TA2 Technical Director) are in attendance to answer any questions regarding the 2020 season.
Stevens-Miller Racing (SMR) brought Trans Am’s TA2 ® presented by AEM category to the forefront of PRI with cars and equipment featured in the Sunoco Fuels, PREFIX, Liqui Moly and Howe Racing Enterprises exhibits.
“PRI is extremely important to the racing industry — from Formula 1 to Karting — it’s all here,” SMR Owner Joe Stevens said. “Our chassis builder, engine builder, component suppliers, as well as the fuel and lubricants we use in our SMR cars, are exhibitors, and for the last two years we’ve done everything we can to support both them and Trans Am at this show. We were thrilled to have been asked by Trans Am’s fuel supplier Sunoco (booth 325) to have a car in their exhibit. We did a special one-off wrap on our 2019 Howe Camaro that uses our sponsor Berryman Products unique component graphic. It’s come out really cool and will be a real show-stopper for sure.
“Liqui Moly is attending for the first time (booth 6000) and will be distributing their 2020 calendars featuring our No. 77 Liqui Moly Mustang that finished second in the 2019 championship, driven by Dillon Machavern,” Stevens continued. “PREFIX will be making their second appearance at PRI (booth 3260) and will be featuring their TA2 CHOICE engines. Howe Racing Enterprises is in their 35th year of participating at PRI (booth 5049) and will have their new 2020 TA2 Camaro on display.
“As a team, we know how important it is to support our sponsors and we know how important it is to support The Trans Am presented by Pirelli and TA2 powered by AEM. With the announcement of 10 of the 13 rounds being live-streamed in 2020, we and our sponsors are working hard to get the word out on what we consider to be the best bang for the buck and the best competition in American Road Racing.”
On Thursday, the Trans Am Series revealed a new option for the 2020 Super GT class with Ligier Automotive North America. The new Ligier JS2 R had a successful maiden season in Europe in 2019 and will make the transition to North America to run alongside Lamborghini, Porsche, Ford, Chevrolet and other strong racing brands in SGT.
“We are excited to bring this latest Ligier GT car to North America and the Trans-Am series”, said Max Crawford, President of Ligier Automotive North America. We are confident the Ligier JS2 R will be a strong performer in the SGT class. If you want to showcase your brand, you race in Trans Am. We can't wait to see our Ligier JS2 R in action in 2020.”
The new addition to the field represents the latest example of a focused push by the Trans Am Series to make the category more attainable for new teams and drivers, and a continued effort to grow the SGT grid. The entire package, which includes a set of Pirelli tires and spec Ford engine, is set at $112,000.
“Since Trans Am first launched the initiative to grow the category to include production-based race cars, we’ve seen fantastic growth in our SGT Class and anticipate that to continue,” said Trans Am Company President John Clagett. “SGT seems to have struck a positive chord with a lot of racers, as there is a wide range of eligible cars that can race with Trans Am now. Having Ligier join that group is yet another great option for our drivers and teams to consider, and we are thrilled/excited to continue to grow this part of the Trans Am paddock.”
Adam Andretti's Circuit of the Americas race-winning Poncho Weaver Dodge Challenger is also on display in the SRI Performance booth (1841).
The PRI Show is an annual must-go-to tradition for many Trans Am competitors. It’s a great place to see all the new offerings from hundreds of motorsports vendors serving the road racing sector. Many Trans Am partners have booths at the show:
325 Sunoco Race Fuels
811 Wilwood Disc Brakes
1041 Pro-System Inc.
1301 Tilton Engineering
1438 COOLSHIRT Systems
1625 Penske Racing Shocks
1645 Quarter Master
1925 Ford Performance
2101 AEM Perf. Electronics
2425 Five Star Bodies
2606 Katech, Inc.
2715 ACP & Stahl Headers
2809 Marwin Sports
3260 Prefix Corp.
3710 EMCO Gears
5049 Howe Racing Ent.
7014 SVRA / Trans Am
Fans can keep up with the Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli at the PRI Show by following the series Instagram Story hosted by TA2 ® West Coast driver Michele Abbate at @gotransam.