On track three of the four weeks in September, ArmsUp Motorsports completed the final round of the F2000 Championship Series this past weekend at the New Jersey Motorsports Park. Taking on the Thunderbolt Raceway layout, ArmsUp drivers James Roe and Trent Walko dominated the event taking home both victories and three of four possible podium results.
Roe was never outside the top-three in official session results throughout the weekend and was one of the drivers to beat. Pacing the field with the fastest time in practice one, Roe claimed the second position in both practice two and qualifying for Saturday's action. Once wheel-to-wheel racing commenced, the ArmsUp Motorsports driver took his talents and the speed of his F2000 car to the front claiming the win. Sunday proved to be a little more difficult for the multi-time race winner as en route to the fastest lap of the race, Roe garnered the third and final step on the podium.
Walko started his weekend off with a 12th place run in the second practice session and vastly improved when the official on track action began. Qualifying sixth for race one on Saturday, the young driver held station through the first wheel-to-wheel action on the weekend. Sunday saw Walko climb the charts and after qualifying in the third position, the ArmsUp Motorsports drivers topped the podium blocks at the end of the day to scoring the win, the second for ArmsUp Motorsports victory of the weekend.
"We have our hands in a lot of different series and on a lot of different types of vehicles," explained Gregg Borland. "I don't think many people understand how involved we are as we assist drivers with their cars in SCCA, F2000, USF2000, vintage racing and more. The season is winding down right now but that does not mean we are slowing by any means. Continuing to evolve our program, we are headed to Indy this week for the annual Chris Griffis Test and already have test dates planned for the off season as we prepare for 2019."
Millville, NJ – Trent Walko won the F2000 Championship Series season finale, taking the checkered flags at New Jersey Motorsports Park first on Sunday afternoon in round 14 of the 2018 season.
Walko, driving the No. 91 Arms Up Motorsports entry, dominated the race after taking the lead early. He won ahead of Michael Eastwell, who finished second, and James Roe, who finished third.
Walko: “I just want to thank my Dad and Arms Up Motorsports for the opportunity. It’s always great to be back in one of these cars, even if it’s only for a race or two a year. Overall, it was a really good race. We got a good start and the car came in really quick. The inside row on the start got a bit of a jump off the start. I kept putting pressure on Michael for the first lap and the car was hooked up right off the bat.”
Eastwell: “It is a good way to kicking off our racing here in the U.S. It’s been a big learning curve for me. I’m pleased with his result; a little more work and hopefully we’ll be there for the win”
Roe: “I had a bad start and didn’t time it right. I fell back quite a bit; three of us started battling and Brandon got away. It didn’t work out today; we just had to bring it home. I think I had fastest lap which is a positive.”
from the Mazda Newsletter. The Mazda Road to Indy (#MRTI) is a similar program that includes Mazda-powered categories of USF2000, Pro Mazda and Indy Lights.
ELKHART LAKE, Wisc. (June 25, 2018) – As the Mazda Road to Indy made its annual pilgrimage to Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin’s Road America circuit, most of the teams loaded their transporters earlier this week with a long drive ahead of them. However, for Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda team ArmsUp Motorsports, it’s a 14-minute drive on the familiar State Road 23 and 67 before pulling through the front gates at the 63-year-old facility.
Started in 1998 by Gregg Borland, The Sheboygan Falls-based team began fielding cars in junior open-wheel racing and has now developed into a premier team on the Mazda Road to Indy, with a short but rich history of competitive cars and drivers.
“I worked in Skip Barber for many years. I did driver coaching and teaching, then test driving for them,” said Borland, team owner of ArmsUp Motorsports. “We had a Formula Continental car and it was fun, we did probably six or seven events a year. One of my friends from Skip Barber decided to buy a Formula Continental [as well], so we bought the car and started running him and we still had the rental car. The next thing you know, he’s out telling his buddies and another guy came along and before I knew it, we had four or five Formula Continental cars and that was basically the start of the whole thing.”
Over the past five seasons, ArmsUp has fielded talented drivers associated with the Mazda Scholarship. In 2014, Birchwood, Wisconsin’s Aaron Telitz captured his first Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires victory at Lucas Oil Raceway with Borland and the team before going on to with the 2016 Pro Mazda Championship with Team Pelfrey and graduating to Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires.
“ArmsUp is awesome!” exclaimed Telitz. “They really want to work with their drivers. John Walko, their engineer, is very hands on and knows how to communicate with drivers really well… It’s such a fun family atmosphere. It’s a great team to learn from and have fun, and I got my first win with them on the Mazda Road to Indy, so their cars are quick too.”
In 2016, Brazilian Indy Lights driver Franzoni made the switch to ArmsUp after consecutive seasons with a rival team in USF2000. His three race wins, two pole positions and third-place finish in the championship with ArmsUp positioned him for a ride in the Pro Mazda Championship with Juncos Racing. Franzoni would go onto win the series championship and guarantee his spot in Indy Lights with the Mazda Scholarship Award.
“For me, they were a huge help. I was in a year where I didn’t have anything and I didn’t know if I was racing or not and they gave me the opportunity to race,” Franzoni described. “It was amazing, we had a great year together, we won three races and we were fighting for the championship until the last race. They did a great job when I was there and they did a great job when Telitz was there. They are great friends of mine and are part of my success.”
The team’s 20-year history of competition is impressive in its own right, but Borland will tell you there’s something more special in the fabric of the family operation.
“We’re determined and serious about winning races, but you got to keep it light. That’s what I enjoy about it, the personalities of the drivers really come out because the personality of the rest of the team is out there and it’s enjoyable…I’ve seen so many kids come out of karting and they’ve been racing for eight or ten years and it’s almost like it is not fun for them anymore. I’d like to see them lighten up a little bit, so we work really hard to get the driver’s personality out and into the program. It makes it fun.”
This weekend, ArmsUp welcomed back the 2016 Mazda Scholarship Driver, Dakota Dickerson and added Max Peichel to the team. Dickerson would lead the team with a best finish of ninth-place in Race 2. As for former drivers Telitz and Franzoni, Telitz would finish third in his home race while the 22-year-old Brazilian Franzoni would capture his first Indy Lights win, dedicating the win to Jeff Green, his former Pro Mazda teammate, who tragically lost his life last weekend in an auto racing accident in Canada.
As the post-race ceremonies ensued, the former ArmsUp drivers congratulated each other on their hard-fought performances, something fans of the Mazda Road to Indy could potentially see from the drivers in the Verizon IndyCar Series in the future.
Before all three Mazda Road To Indy series head to the streets of Toronto, July 13-15, the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires will compete on its second oval of the season at Iowa Speedway, July 7-8.
Mazda Motorsports boasts the most comprehensive auto racing development ladder system of any auto manufacturer in the world. The Mazda Road to 24 (#MRT24) program offers a number of scholarships to advance drivers up the sports car racing ladder, beginning with the Global MX-5 Cup series and culminating with the Mazda Prototype team. The Mazda Road to Indy (#MRTI) is a similar program that includes Mazda-powered categories of USF2000, Pro Mazda and Indy Lights. In grassroots road racing, more Mazdas race on any given weekend in North America than any other manufacturer. Follow all of the latest news at MazdaMotorsports.com, @MazdaRacing on Twitter, and MazdaMotorsports on Instagram and Facebook
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It's time to dole out the 'Star of the Race' honors for the #IndyTO! I'll kick things off with USF2000 Series Race 1 and that nod goes to Dakota Dickerson Racing from ArmsUp Motorsports.
The San Diego, CA resident has worked non-stop on his career since his first season in the MRTI in 2016, and it's good to have him back. Dakota has connected with ArmsUp engineer John Walko and the team is now fighting for podiums and wins.
Dakota had a great outing in TO and rewarded Gregg Borland and Brent Borland for providing him with the opportunity with a second place finish.
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