I was excited for St. Petersburg, as it was the season opener for SCCA World Challenge as well as the IndyCar series, which were beginning a new era with the Dallara DW12’s. I have to say I really like these new cars and they do sound great.
Aside from her emergency graphic repair duties, Mom’s main objective for going to Florida was for the SCCA World Challenge series. As many of you may know, all those number panels, contingency stickers and color-coated windshield banners were all her responsibility. It was exciting to see all that hard work paid off with every car that was on track. Since I would be busy shooting all weekend, she went looking for ways to assist SCCA and ended up keeping busy all weekend while making some great connections.
As far as any local or formerly local drivers in attendance, Denver’s, Robb Holland and Alex Figge were back, though no longer K-Pax Racing teammates as the Volvo touring car program had been dropped. So Robb found himself in a Compass360 Honda while Figge remains in the Volvo S60 in GT. A newcomer to the series is Andy Lee of Colorado Springs. He spent a couple seasons in the VW Jetta TDI Cup. Now he’s in a Camaro in the GTS class. I was surprised to see that instead of Jason Carter in his Racing for our Heroes Porsche (as was on the entry list), instead it was none other than Steve Ott, whose filling in for Carter.
With nearly 50 cars on a small street circuit, I expected to see some yellows. In race #1, there were…a lot. Robb Holland fell victim to the first one on lap one, that crumpled the nose. He soldiered on to finish sixth with a slight improvement in race #2 to finish fifth. Andy Lee improved from race #1 to race #2 as well with a fourth, followed by a third in the Best IT Camaro. Figge led most of the race in the Volvo but fell to third in race #1, and suffered mechanical trouble the next day. Ott was running with the leaders, but received a stop and go penalty and ended up 10th, however he backed it up in race #2 and on to a fifth place finish.
Well that about sums it up. I’ll let the photos do the rest of the talking. Our plan now is to attend most, if not all the World Challenge races this season, along with other races, and I’ll pass along whatever photos or insight I have from the weekends. Up next is Long Beach!
To see the IndyCars and much, much, more, check the galleries here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jbonvouloir/sets/