The Winning Stretch
Click here for a lot of great photos from today, by Greg Clark and Casey Keil
LIME ROCK PARK (May 25) – In racing, the reason why rain is called “the great equalizer” is this: A slick race track means a driver cannot put all the power down. It just results in wheelspin. So a car that has a lot more horsepower than another simply can’t utilize the power advantage. That means everything is mostly down to the driver and the choices he or she makes... rain, the great equalizer.
Do you know how much power a Trans Am TA car makes? The answer is at least 850 h.p. Do you know how much horsepower a TA2 car makes? Answer: 480. Do you know who won today’s Trans Am race at Lime Rock Park? Bob Stretch in a TA2. Second was Cam Lawrence in a TA2. Third was Pete Halsmer in a... TA2.
Yes, for the first time since the Trans Am Series created its TA2 class in 2010, a TA2 car was the overall winner of Trans Am race. It was great fun to watch – as most wet races, from club racing up to F1, are wont to be – and Stretch’s win in his Fix Rim Mobile/Wheels America Chevy Camaro at Lime Rock Park made history.
And it wasn’t like Stretch started up front, either; he had gridded way back in 20th place. He sliced and diced his way to the sharp end of the field, finding traction where others weren’t, putting down his power as gently as a butterfly on a clover, flitting his way to the front while others spun or slid or skidded off into the... clover.
Lesson: When you’re given the chance to watch a Lime Rock race run in the rain, take it.
Every race today – there were six others – was in the wet.
In the two F2000 open-wheel races, there were two different winners. In the morning’s first go, Tim Minor clearly majored in mastering the rain line at Lime Rock and romped to the win over Kevin Kopp and Roberto Lorena. Minor, by the way, is what one might call a “fall” or “winter” chicken, as opposed to the spring variety. He left his 40s more than a few years ago but had no problem plucking the feathers of his very-much-younger competitors.
In race two, the young bucks took over the podium, with Kyle Connery victorious over Lorena and Federico (yes, not Frederico) Mosconi. Minor was running second when he failed to meet expectations in the Lefthander and spun off...
The Formula F/F1600 races had the same winner for both races, Jake Eidson. He beat Paul Alspach in race one, and Adrian Starrantino in the second. A-Star had a decent day, finishing third in the first race, while Aaron Telitz snagged P3 in race two.
In the two vintage races sanctioned by the VSCCA, Roger Cassin wasn’t afraid to get his old Alfa wet and won both, with Jeff Schur grabbing a pair of P2s in Cassin’s wake – literally – driving his Lotus 57. Stellar work, guys.
It was a wet-but-good day of racing, and thanks to the fans who didn’t mind the rain.
NEXT UP: The ALMS Northeast Grand Prix and Pirelli World Challenge and Lamborghini Super Trofeo (first time in America), July 4, 5 & 6.
The Winning Stretch