|The Prototype Lites have one mandatory 5 minute pit stop. Perfect time to make a quick dash to the John.|
Yes the ALMS race was over, but we still had another full day of racing scheduled. The couple mile hikes on Saturday wore me out and I slept right through my alarm, so unfortunately I missed the Star Mazda race that started at 9:15. But I did make it on time for the second and final race of the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Championship. After scoping out the race results for Saturday’s first race I realized that the only cars running were the Lites 1 and Lites 2, not really sure why. Maybe one of you can chime in here.
The Prototype Lites are not as big or as fast as the full size Prototypes that run in ALMS, but they are still exciting to watch. Their smaller size allows them to squeeze in places you would normally not even consider in a full size race car. Going 3 wide into turns was standard operating procedure.
Johnny Meriggi ran away with the race and came in almost 8 seconds ahead of the second place car of Owen Kratz in his #11 Elan DP02. The L2 class winner was John Weisberg with Lee Alexander coming in a close second only half a second behind.
|Count the helmets. Yup, that’s 3 cars going into turn 11…awesome!|
After a lunch break the track was hot again for the second race of the Patron GT3 Challenge. Again Ross Smith dominated the field in his new Porsche and came in 3 seconds in front of second place Amadeo Quiroz despite the numerous yellow flags. There were a couple of times when Smith opened up a 5+ second lead only to lose it to yellow flags.
Which brings me to my next point. Why do they have so many yellow flags at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca? I know there weren’t that many incidents, but it seemed like every race was under yellow 30%-40% of the time. And I mean every race, ALMS, GT3, even the MX5 race we’ve yet to talk about. I over heard someone saying it was because they put out a yellow even for an off, is this true?
If it is, then that is my only complaint about the weekend. Something needs to be done about the number of yellows, because it sucks for the fans and I’m sure the drivers hate it too…especially the ones in the lead.
|An all too familiar sight this past weekend.|
|But our hats off to all the corner workers. It’s a thankless job, but we appreciate you!|