We gave it our best today but came up short. On for a podium finish but didn' happen. On to the next one .
Millgrove, ON (August 30, 2020) – Kevin Lacroix had a solid NASCAR Pinty’s event at Flamboro Speedway last Saturday, claiming second place in the first race and clinching the win during the second race.
Team Bumper to Bumper entered uncharted territories as the series made its Flamboro Speedway debut this past Saturday. However, it was a rewarding weekend for the Saint-Eustache based team, who finished runner-up during the Pinty’s 125 and claimed victory during the 125 PartyCasino.
The day got off to a rough start, with rain delaying track activities. However, testing was positive as the driver of the #74 Bumper to Bumper / Total / PFC Brakes / Lacroix Tuning car set the 9th fastest time, “our goal was to adjust the car for the two events of the evening,” explained Kevin. “As it was a track that was still unknown to us, it was important to focus on the car and find the best possible adjustments.”
With the new 2020 race format adopted by the Canadian NASCAR series at Sunset Speedway, drivers were invited to draw their starting positions randomly.
“I had drawn the 7th place, but I started from 6th as a competitor was sent to the back of the field. As soon as the green flag dropped, I started to make my way up to the second position. I thought I could catch up with Jason Hathaway, the leader, but a latecomer gave me a hard time and lost valuable time. However, I am pleased with my second position.”
It was a quiet race for the Saint-Eustache native, “passing is difficult on this oval, there is only one race line that works, and it’s hard to be two cars wide.”
For the other 125-lap race, Kevin was second on the grid, starting on the outside of the first row. “After the start, I took the lead as I went came out of turn one, passing D.J. Kennington. After about two-thirds of the race, Jason Hathaway caught up with Kennington but was still ten car lengths behind me.”
Kevin continued his explanation, “we had a caution with about 30 laps to go, I was a little nervous because I knew Hathaway was fast. It was very close racing in the first ten laps after the restart, there was a little bit of rubbing, but I was able to pull away and ensure my lead.”
Via IMSA NEWS
Even with the shaky weather Friday at VIR, the status remained pretty much quo through opening practice for the IMSA Prototype Challenge. The No. 9 JDC MotorSports Norma M30 LMP3 5.0L V8, winner of the last two races this season, set the pace in what became an abbreviated session due to heavy rain.
The 45-minute practice began with a wet track following a rain shower prior to the session’s start, but VIRginia International Raceway showed signs of drying as some cars tested the 3.27-mile, 17-turn circuit. Scott Andrews was the first driver to tour the course in less than two minutes, posting a lap of 1:59.776 (98.283 mph) in the No. 9 he shares with Gerry Kraut.
Soon after, the skies opened again and the cars sat idle for the last half of the soggy session. Only nine entries turned laps at speed, with Andrews more than four seconds quicker than the No. 47 Forty7 Motorsports Norma piloted by Kyle Kirkwood (2:03.780).
Prototype Challenge competitors will have a final, 30-minute practice session starting at 8:50 a.m. ET Saturday, ahead of qualifying at 11:20 a.m. Sunday’s race, timed at one hour, 45 minutes, streams live at 9:35 a.m. ET on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.
The VIR round is the fourth of six on the 2020 Prototype Challenge schedule. Naveen Rao and Matthew Bell, drivers of the No. 64 K2R Motorsports Norma, lead the standings by two points over Dakota Dickerson, who rides in the No. 54 MLT Motorsports Ligier JS P3 with co-driver Dom Cicero.
Congratulations to the winners Scott Andrews and Gerry Kraut for the IMSA Prototype Challenge race at Road America #IMSA / #RoadAmerica
Gerry Kraut and Scott Andrews picked up their second consecutive IMSA Prototype Challenge win on Saturday, but not without some drama, confusion, momentary deflation and eventual elation.
Andrews was behind the wheel of the No. 9 JDC MotorSports Norma M30 for the final stint at Road America, nursing his fuel to the finish 1.837 seconds ahead of the No. 74 Forty7 Motorsports Norma driven by Wyatt Schwab and Jon Brownson.
The drama and confusion erupted when the field was shown the white flag instead of the checkered as Andrews crossed the finish line. Based on IMSA’s lap-time average predictor, the race leader was expected to cross the line before the one-hour, 45-minute time limit ran out, necessitating one more lap. But since Andrews’ pace had slowed dramatically in fuel-saving mode, he crossed start-finish a few seconds after time had expired.
The extra lap that wound up not counting saw a five-car thrash around the 4.048-mile road course for what they thought would be the win. Dakota Dickerson maneuvered from fifth place to first in the No. 54 MLT Motorsports Ligier JS P3, but he was returned to fifth in the official result.
The victory for Kraut and Andrews comes two weeks after they won at Sebring International Raceway, though neither was sure initially if they had won Saturday.
“I was on the timing stand and the clock had run out,” said Kraut, who drove the opening stint but was among the first to pit 45 minutes into the race. “(Andrews) was coming out of (Turn) 14, we assumed they were going to throw the checker and they threw the white. We went like, ‘What?!’ Obviously, they did the right thing to reverse that.”
Andrews said he would’ve been delighted with third place, where he was when the extra lap was completed. Then he received the good news over the team radio on the cooldown lap.
“They said, ‘Hang tight, we may have won this thing,’” Andrews said. “So, I was super happy and celebrating the whole time. It was good.
“We came into the race probably knowing we didn’t have the pace, so we had to do a risky and aggressive strategy on fuel if we had any chance to win. As far as strategy and teamwork and just the driving for both of us, I think we did a really awesome job collectively.
“I’m stoked. Two in a row is awesome. It’s not something we expected but we’re very grateful we have the opportunity to do it.”
An additional post-race reshuffling occurred in technical inspection where a fuel capacity infraction was revealed on the No. 74 of Schwab and Brownson. The car was moved to the bottom of the finishing order as a result.
The penalty moved Dan Goldburg and Blake Mount into second in the No. 6 Performance Tech Motorsports Ligier. David Grant and Keith Grant, who started on pole in the No. 40 Forty7 Motorsports Norma, wound up third overall but claimed victory in the Bronze Cup class.
“It was great,” Keith Grant said. “David put down some good qualifying laps and was able to start from the pole for us. He led the whole first stint and did a good job of getting us a gap. We had a good pit stop this time; we had troubles last time at Sebring. I just had to put my head down.”
IMSA Prototype Challenge returns to action Sunday, Aug. 23 at VIRginia International Raceway. The race streams live at 9:35 a.m. ET on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.
This article originally appeared at IMSA.com.
In the first IMSA Prototype Challenge race since Jan. 4 at Daytona International Speedway, Scott Andrews and Gerry Kraut charged from last on the starting grid and earned a strategic victory in the one-hour, 45-minute race at Sebring International Raceway
Because of a qualifying rainout and the fact that the team did not participate in the season opener, Kraut started from last on the grid but worked his way forward in a strong opening stint before pitting to hand the No. 9 JDC MotorSports Norma M30 over to Andrews. The timing of the pit stop turned out to be perfect, as Andrews found himself at the head of the field at the end of the pit-stop sequence.
Andrews then confidently pulled away from the field on a pair of restarts with under 30 minutes left in the race and cruised to victory by 14.810 seconds over Stevan McAleer in the No. 10 Robillard Racing Norma.
"The second caution would came out with an hour and thirteen minutes left after the number 11 car of Steven Thomas went too wide heading to the start/finish line and smacked the wall hard, ripping part of his left front nose off. The number 9 JDC MotorSports came to pit road as Scott Andrews took over for Gerry Kraut.
With under 30 minutes left, Scott Andrews led the field back to green . During the green-flag, Joel Janco spun around and could not get his car restarted, bringing out the fourth caution of the race. Once the race resumed, Andrews was gone, and Stevan McAleer and Matthew Bell were left fighting for second-place. Bell got loose, allowing McAleer to take sole possession of second place. Scott Andrews would go on to win the race by 14.810 seconds over Stevan McAleer." - JDC MotorSports Scott Andrews takes the checkered flag at Sebring
The duo’s previous best run together was a third-place showing last summer at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
"I’ve been coming to Sebring a lot, and it’s taken me a long time to figure it out, the track and the bumps, but I do love this place," Kraut said. "It’s very challenging, it’s very physical, and you need to respect it and let the car do its job for you. That’s what I’ve done since I’ve raced here."
McAleer and Joe Robillard wound up second in the No. 10 machine in what also was their first IMSA Prototype Challenge start of the season after a mechanical issue prevented them from competing at Daytona. McAleer held off a hard charging Matt Bell in the No. 64 K2R Motorsports Norma in the closing laps to secure the runner-up spot.
Dakota Dickerson and Dom Cicero took fourth place in the No. 54 MLT Motorsports Ligier JS P3, with Greg and Eric Palmer completing the top five in the No. 3 Jr III Racing Ligier.
Keith and David Grant capped an eventful race with a Bronze Cup class victory in the No. 40 Forty7 Motorsports Norma.
"We’re glad to be back racing, at least for a short while we were," said Keith Grant. "Yesterday was a challenge because it rained out our qualifying and we felt like we could’ve put the car on the pole and been able to pull a gap.
"Unfortunately, we didn’t do that and had to start at the back. I got the car up to the lead in the first stint, but not by much and then went through the pit stop. David came back out and just made a mistake passing somebody and the rest was history after that. Unfortunately, we ended up back in ninth."
It’ll be a much quicker turnaround between Rounds 2 and 3 for the IMSA Prototype Challenge as the series returns to action in two weeks at Road America.
Working with young talent is one of the hallmarks of JWR and we're very excited to working with Luca Mars.
This past weekend we got Luca on the track at Pitt Race to get his first experience in F2000 racing. He did fantastic in lap traffic. and
LUCA MARS RACING
Luca has been racing for a few years in karting and was ready to move up to some faster cars. He's got enough talent that he's ready for F2000 and this past weekend really showed everyone that. Here's a bit more of his Karting wins.
Join Kevin Rutherford, Joel Morrow and John Walko this Friday May 15th for Fuel Mileage Friday on Trucking Business & Beyond SiriusXM channel 146 Road Dog Trucking Radio from 1pm - 2pm ET for a lively discussion on all things related to today’s trucks and how to achieve better fuel efficiency. Call 888-876-2336 with your fuel mileage questions.
Written By Tim Benz | Wednesday, July 24, 2019 6:15 a.m.
It could’ve been really bad.
A blow to the face after a Little League game. Right around the eye. He got knocked out.
“I was walking home, drinking my apple juice,” said Franklin Park’s Luca Mars, describing the worst injury of his life. “And a girl on the swings with cleats hit me right in the eye.”
The 13-year-old kart-racing champ lists that as his biggest mishap. Not one of his three racing-related ambulance trips, including the time he flew out of his car at high speed on the final turn and skidded across the pavement.
“I don’t know if my dad freaked out,” Mars said of his parents’ reactions to the spill. “My mom wasn’t there. But another time I crashed when my mom was there, and she flipped out.
Mars wasn’t rattled by the wreck. He was just mad he didn’t finish the race.
Cleated girls on swing sets at Little League fields? Different story
“So I guess that’s the justification,” laughed Brett Mars, Luca’s father.
Justifying — or embracing — the inherent dangers connected with auto racing is what has made Mars one of the fast-rising stars of the sport.
About to enter the eighth grade at Ingomar Middle School, Mars is making a name for himself in the racing community.
He won the 2017 Florida Winter Tour (Mini ROK), both the ROK and the SKUSA (Super Kart USA) Winter Series titles this February and the 2019 Florida Winter Tour Championship in Ocala last March.
Mars drives for Speed Concepts Racing. Mike Speed — whose son, Scott, raced on the Formula 1 circuit — formed the group. And he could tell Mars’ talent was special.
“A lot of these kids with talent, they are born with it,” Speed said. “He was one that you could tell. We just provide him with really good solid equipment and let him learn what he needs to do.”
Mars will race in the Rotax “Stars and Stripes Open” Aug. 2-4 at Wampum’s Pittsburgh International Race Complex.
“If he’s not one of the guys to beat, then we are doing something wrong with the equipment,” Speed said. “I do believe he is going to be one of the guys up front.”
If Mars’ car wins there, a ticket will be punched for him to participate in the ROK Cup Superfinal in October in Italy.
Mars finished sixth in that event last year in Brazil.
“I’ve been testing the car lately. I’ve been doing really good laps. I’ve learned a lot,” Mars said.
Mars’ father — who raced competitively as an adult — says his son’s consistency is what has allowed him to climb through the junior ranks.
“He finished in the top 3 about 88% of the time,” Brett Mars said. “It’s not about winning races. It’s about being consistent and not tearing up cars. So that’s the focus we put on. And it’s starting to reward.”
Mars has been driving since he was 6. He won the first race he entered. So he had some polish heading into the kart junior division, which is for 13- to 15-year-olds.
Having not yet hit his 14th birthday, Mars is already making waves against older drivers. And that hasn’t gone over so well. At times, he says, some older kids may have tried to wreck him out of spite.
“It doesn’t go over too well,” Mars said. “My first junior race, I was winning, and I got crashed.”
It’s not all track wars, trophies and globetrotting to exotic destinations for Mars. He admits missing up to 50 days of school isn’t as much fun as it sounds.
He’s relegated to playing a lot of catch-up for his assignments online and not getting to hang out with his friends as much as most 13-year-olds.
That balance could be even more difficult to strike as he moves up into the senior division, which corresponds with a more demanding high school course load.
Brett Mars says Luca’s career arc and the ability to mesh that with North Allegheny’s educational requirements will dictate whether he stays in the public school system. Or, he could go the private-school or home-school route.
But, pfft! C’mon! Details, details.
He gets to win money (sometimes) while driving 75 mph without a harness in 320-pound speed machines.
At 13 years old.
That’s three years before he can even approach 45 mph on McKnight Road as a regular licensed driver. That has to result in lots of street cred with your friends, right?
“It’s really cool, really fun,” Mars admitted.
A victory in Wampum in two weeks will give him bragging rights well beyond the halls of Ingomar Middle School.
He could boast all the way to Italy.
Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at email@example.com or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.
"We had a great day of testing yesterday at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with the Norma Automotive P3 car, I absolutely love this thing." ~ John Walko
Norma Auto Concept Engineering (or Norma) is a French manufacturer of racing cars based in Saint-Pé-de-Bigorre (in the Hautes Pyrenees - France) and founded by Norbert Santos in 1986.
The European Le Mans Series is a European series of endurance races reserved for cars such as "Le Mans Prototypes" and "Le Mans Grand Touring". In 2017, the ELMS presents three different categories : LMP2, LMP3, LMGTE.
In order to strengthen the pyramid of endurance racing which was introduced in 1999 by the Automobile Club de l'Ouest, the ACO has launched in 2015 a new category of junior sports-prototype for endurance racing, LMP3.
In the pyramid of "Le Mans Prototypes," LMP3 becomes the first step on the ladder before moving up to the LMP2 and LMP1 classes (the latter in the FIA WEC and 24 Hours of Le Mans).
The thinking behind this car is that there should be fewest number of constraints possible, whether those are budgetary, technical, driving or operation. The sale price of the new car, complete, must not exceed €206,000.
The LMP3 is a closed car. The chassis and bodywork of LMP3 can be built by six manufacturers which have been designed by the ACO : Ginetta, Ligier, Adess, Dome, Riley and Norma. They are very close to those of the current LMP2 (closed cockpit, carbon chassis with tubular steel roll cage). The powertrain consist of a Nissan 420 bhp normally aspirated V8 engine, and an X-Trac gearbox. It is identical for all chassis, and marketed by the ORECA company which also provides specific assistance to teams.
To emphasise the driver development of the category, crews must include at least one bronze driver, gold drivers are only allowed in crews of three drivers and platinum drivers are not permitted to compete in LMP3. Driving times are also controlled with gold drivers only allowed to drive for 60-minutes during a 4-hour ELMS race giving more time at the wheel for the silver and bronze members of the crew.
JWR, wants to extend a Big thank you to Jeremiah Grenier, Russ Gaglio and Brian McGoldrick for looking after the car, Scott Andrews for wheeling the thing like he does, and Gerry Kraut and JDC MotorSports for making it happen.
Here you can find out about our developments and experiences in coaching and engineering