Tales from the Tower: The Sam Posey Formula Vee Trophy Dash

via Greg Rickes. Photos by Dave Rodman and Randy McKee


Irish eyes were smiling as Gerard Own Callaghan swept under the checkered flag in the Sam Posey Formula Vee Trophy Dash at Lime Rock Park, but it was hardly a carefree ride.



The race, commemorating the first milestone of Sam Posey’s racing career, when he strapped into a Volkswagen-powered open-wheel Formula Vee racer in 1964, was the feature event of the New England Road Racing Championship which kicked off Father’s Day weekend.



The weekend got off to a rough start for Callaghan, a second-generation driver who often competes against his father, when he had an engine go sour in Friday afternoon’s preliminary. The Boston-based Irish/American racing clan came together to work into the wee hours of the night to replace the powerplant so the #12, clad in Irish green, could get back on track.


Callaghan started on row 3 in fifth position and had to battle his way to the front of the pack. With a 29 car field it was a race punctuated with heavy traffic and full-course caution periods, but Callaghan eventually broke free to edge out Michael Hinkle and Justin Zarzycki for the win. Zarzycki, another second generation racer, had started from pole position based on the fastest lap from Friday’s qualifying sessions. It was the first time he’d qualified in the number 1 position.


Adding to the sense of occasion Sam Posey himself returned to the Winner’s Circle for the awards presentations, where the leading trio received special trophies provided by Lime Rock Park.


Behind the trophy winners, fourth place went to Texas-transplant Tyler Reynolds, followed by Chris Barry. Finishing sixth, and the first among the drivers experimenting with street-type radial tires rather than racing tire exclusively designed for Formula Vee competition, was Tom Kenney. Right behind him, also on the radial tires was another member of the Irish/American racing clan, Charlie Doherty. David Grimes, Chris Zarzycki, and Kevin O’Day rounded out the top 10.


Callaghan completed the weekend with a “daily double”, winning the afternoon finale as well, over repeat bride’s maid Hinkle, and O’Day.