Topeka, KAN. (June 13, 2017) – With the 2017 Tire Rack SCCA® ProSolo® season drawing to a close, drivers flocked to Toledo for grippy concrete and a chance at the year-end points championship.
The Ladies Challenge ended with Shelly Monfort and Heather Everett as the final pairing. Everett made her way to the finale by taking out Laura Campbell, who coned in her opening run, and Laura Harbour. Monfort, who was seventh on index out of 275 entrants, took down Denise Cashmore, also on a cone, and Jen Fox. Finally, Monfort won the final pairing against Everett to take the Ladies Challenge win, capping off a spectacular weekend both for herself and the other two drivers in John Vitamvas' DSP BMW 330Ci. Fox won the third-place runoff against Harbour.
In the Bonus Challenge, Kart Modified’s Michael Nienhuis made his way past Jacob Ronald (STR), and Mike Snyder (STS), to face off in the final pairing against Mike Potocki from A Street. Potocki took out Ryan Lower and Joe Craley on his route to the finale. With Nienhuis breaking out in an earlier round, he couldn't back up the new dial-in times, and coned as well, allowing Potocki to take the Bonus Challenge win.
The final pairing of the Super Challenge featured Mark Daddio from A Street and Mark McKnight of Street Touring Sport, who is hot off a Super Challenge win at the Lincoln Spring Nationals ProSolo a couple weeks ago. Daddio was able to get by Mark Shrivastava, Danny Kao and Kyle Herbst on the way to his final matchup with McKnight. McKnight took out Steve Seguis, G.J. Dixon and Rick Cone, all of whom broke the cardinal rule of the Super Challenge: don't cone or red light. That rule crept up again in the final pairing as Daddio coned towards the end of his second run, giving McKnight his second Super Challenge win of the year.
A Street was a battle of who could eke out a clean and fast run on each side, and it was John Laughlin taking the win by 0.048 second over Laurence Casey, with Daddio being just another 0.027 back. All three had the raw pace to win, but Laughlin was the one able to maximize time on the clean runs. Jason Frank, Ryan Davies and Mark Sarcevicz completed the six trophy positions in the 19-driver class.
C Street had a close battle all weekend with a different leader after each heat. But it was Mark Shrivastava, finding significant time on his last runs, who gained his first National event win in a new-to-him MX-5 Mazda. Rick Cone also improved on Sunday morning, but wasn’t able to hold onto his day one lead, finishing second just 0.259 back from Shrivastava. Brian Garfield, Chris Harp and Julian Garfield claimed the remaining trophy positions.
After car trouble in the afternoon, Street Modified was held down by Aaron Shoe's Mitsubishi Evo based on the strength of his Saturday morning runs. Daniel Stainback found time in Shoe’s absence, but was plagued by cones and red lights that landed him 0.249 second back in the runner-up spot. Chris Dressler, sharing Shoe’s Evo, was unable to defend his early second-place position and fell to third, just out of the trophies.
Super Street R was its typical bloodbath with 21 drivers battling for six trophy positions. G.J. Dixon, James Yom, Matthew Braun and Josh Luster all had the pace to get it done. Dixon led out of the gate in the Porsche GT3 and didn’t look back despite hard charges from Braun and Reeve who finished in second and third, respectively. Yom and Jon Caserta slotted into fourth and fifth, respectively. Luster had the speed to take the top spot, but ended up with the sixth and final trophy position after struggling with cones all weekend.
In D Street Prepared it was the John Vitamvas show. He bested co-driver and Driver of Eminence Sam Strano by just 0.233 second, with both piloting Vitamvas’ BMW 330Ci. Jeff Hurst claimed the third and final trophy in his RX-8 Mazda. Of note, while Strano was second on index for the entire event, it wasn't until several drivers dropped out of the Super Challenge that he was able to make it in, with the initial challenge margin set at just 0.214 second.
Words and Photo by Ryan Davies