SCCA Western Stars Battle In Portland
PORTLAND, Ore. – Five race groups fielded more than 100 cars at round seven of the SCCA Western Conference Majors Tour, and many drivers locked in their Conference Championships.
More conference championships will be settled tomorrow in the final races of the SCCA Western Conference Majors Tour.
In all, 10 championships were assured by drivers participating in today’s event. Three more championships will be certified by simply finishing their races tomorrow, with five more yet to be determined.
Spec Racer Ford went first today, with last year’s National Championship Runoffs runner-up Todd Harris leading the race from the pole position in his ProDrive Racing/HMS car. Fifth place Runoffs finisher Steve Fogg had a solid hold on second place until a loose exhaust forced a retirement about halfway through the race.
At the checker, it was Harris, Gary Manchester and Chris Jackson, all of Oregon Region. Harris locked down the Western Conference championship with this victory. In addition to racing for himself, Harris runs the ProDrive racing team, and he likes to see his teammates on the podium with him.
“For a while I thought it would be 1-2-3 with the ProDrive Racing Team, but a couple of our guys fell out,” Harris said. “Tomorrow hopefully we’ll keep all the cars on track and have a different result.”
The second race group of the day featured Formula F, Formula Vee, and Formula 500. Stan Townes won Formula F and overall, and a simple finish in tomorrow’s race will earn him the Western Conference title. Townes won the race strongly over David Zurlinden who is second in Conference points. To win the championship, Zurlinden needs a 4th place or better finish in the final round, and for Townes not to claim a finish.
In Formula Vee, Terran Swanson grabbed an early lead in his Toad Hall Enterprises Mysterian over Dennis Andrade in his D+D Racing Vortech, but Andrade battled back to take the lead and then the win. The Western Conference title will be decided between the two drivers at the conclusion of Sunday’s race. The two are so evenly matched that whoever finishes higher in tomorrow’s race will claim the championship.
Lance Spiering ran unopposed in F500. If he finishes the finale, he will claim the Western Conference championship in his class.
Race Group Three included the fastest GT cars, as well as American Sedan and Touring 1 and 2. Simon Gregg raced his Derhaag Motorsports Chevrolet Corvette to the GT1 victory and the overall win.
“It was a pretty relaxing race. Not too much pressure on me, so I was able to just enjoy it out there,” Gregg said.