|May 21, 2012 News
|Pacific F2000/FF: Kelley Extends Championship Lead at Buttonwillow
| Bobby Kelley added another win to his rookie resume with the Round Five victory at Buttonwillow Raceway Park|
(Photo: Jerry Andersen - jerryandersen-world.com)
Round Five of the Pacific F2000/Formula F Super Series Championship Presented by Corsa Car Care was held on Saturday (May 19) at the 2.640-mile 14CW track at Buttonwillow Raceway Park. The event was run as part of the Cal Club Region of the SCCA Double Regional weekend and was held under sunny skies with warm temperatures typical for this time of year.
Qualifying began at 10:45 am, and 15 cars took to the track, including five of the six Formula F cars entered, and immediately the qualifying duel began between Bobby Kelley in his No. 21 A & B Equipment/Dave Freitas Racing Van Diemen and David Cheng, a series veteran making a one off guest appearance in the series this weekend driving the No. 4 C.J. Wilsonís Childrenís Charities Van Diemen for PR1 Motorsports. Kelley and Cheng traded fast laps until it was finally Kelley who managed to wrestle the pole away from Cheng by a mere 13 one thousandths of a second.
Camren Kaminsky in the No. 34 PR1 Van Diemen was next, followed by Bob Negron, No. 9 Terri Negron Web Design/Negron Racing Van Diemen, back to defend his Master Class (drivers 51 and up) championship, and Les Phillips, No. 2 Swiss Implants/Porterfield Brakes Van Diemen, the current Master Class point leader, all of which managed times within one second of the pole time.
Next up was Peter Thomas, No. 7 Refrigeration Control Co./PR1 Van Diemen, followed by Camden Geise having a fraught weekend having already had an engine change in the No. 6 DFR Van Diemen, Peter West, No. 99 Frank Monise Motors Van Diemen, Chris Hundley, another former series runner back for this weekend in the No. 62 Limousine Connection DFR Van Diemen, and Nick Kodenko, No. 31 Kodenko Automotive/Kodenko Jeans/Redline Oil/Associated Tire Van Diemen.
The Formula F group was again led by Conner Ford in the No. 77 JF Excavating & Grading/Western Nevada Supply/Sparco USA/PR1 Motorsports Mygale/Honda, ahead of Ed Erlandson, back after winning both rounds of the BFGoodrich Super Tour Double National. Driving the No. 8 Artwork by Eli/Porter Racing/Loyning/Goodyear Swift DB6/Ford, he managed to get within six tenths of Ford. This pair was trailed by Al Salvo, No. 23 Miracle Sealants/Corsa Care/PR1 Mygale/Honda, Sage Marie, returning after his outing at Miller Motorsports Park in the No. 17 Honda Performance Development Piper/Honda, and Jerry Andersen, No. 0 Swift DB1/Ford.
When the green flag waved, it was Kelley who took the lead, followed by Kaminsky and Cheng as the field headed toward turn 1 with a slight gap to the FF group, led by Ford and Erlandson. At the end of the first lap, it was Kelley, Kaminsky, Cheng, Negron, Phillips, Thomas, Geise, West, Hundley and Kodenko. The Formula F group was led by Ford, closely pursued by Erlandson and Salvo, with Marie, Neil Roberts, who had missed qualifying in his Keenan Honda/Think Fast Engineering/ThinkFastBook.com Swift DB6/Honda, and Andersen.
Cheng passed Kaminsky on lap two and began his pursuit of Kelley in a battle that lasted the entire race with Cheng always applying the pressure and Kelley able to withstand it lap after lap to the end of the race. Kelley finished only 2.395 seconds ahead of Cheng for his third win of the season to extend his points lead.
Cheng in his dogging of Kelley managed the fastest race lap with a 1:40.784, good for two points and bragging rights.
Behind the Kelley/Cheng battle, Kaminsky and Negron had an equally spirited battle, with Negron holding the early advantage, having gotten by Kaminsky on lap three. Kaminsky fought back and got by Negron on lap 11, and held the final podium position until lap 15, the penultimate lap, when an off track excursion cost him not only the third place, but dropped him to seventh place at the finish. Negron held on to take the third place finish, and with it the Victory in the Master Class, showing that his time away from the series had not diminished his pace.
Fourth Place went to Geise, who after his ill-fortune on Friday and in qualifying charged back to defend his second place standing in the points, starting seventh and working his way up to fourth at the finish by first passing Thomas then Phillips and gaining his last position on Kaminskyís misfortune. His drive earned him the Wine Country Motorsports Hard Charger Award.
Phillips had another competitive drive to fifth place, and was followed by Thomas, whose sixth place finish netted him the Expert Class (drivers 35-50) win. Kaminsky, Hundley, West, and Kodenko finished seventh through 10th respectively.
Ford raced to another dominant victory in the now familiar Mygale/Honda, not putting a wheel wrong and showing the poise, consistency, and skill that earned him the F2000 series title last year. His victory was his fourth of the season, and coupled with the raceís fastest lap give him a huge points lead as the series has reached its midway point.
Following Ford home was teammate Al Salvo in and identically prepared Mygale/Honda after a race long duel with Erlandson that saw Salvo get by Erlandson on lap nine to take the position and hold it to the end, giving PR1 Motorsports a one-two finish.
Erlandson finished third and was followed by Andersen, Marie, who dropped out with low oil pressure, and Roberts, who only managed three laps before electrical problems sidelined him.
Pacific Formula F2000/Formula F Super Series
Round Five - Race Results
May 19, 2012
Buttonwillow Raceway Park - Buttonwillow, California
|1.||Bobby Kelley||Dave Freitas Racing||-||1:41.101|
|2.||David Cheng||PR1 Motorsports||2.395||1:40.784|
|3.||Bob Negron||Negron Racing||16.108||1:41.397|
|4.||Camden Geise||Dave Freitas Racing||28.194||1:42.374|
|5.||Les Phillips||Phillips Racing||34.458||1:42.841|
|6.||Peter Thomas||PR1 Motorsports||35.246||1:42.658|
|7.||Camren Kaminsky||PR1 Motorsports||42.945||1:41.368|
|8.||Chris Hundley||Dave Freitas Racing||57.771||1:43.985|
|9.||Peter West||Dave Freitas Racing||58.713||1:44.519|
|1.||Conner Ford||PR1 Motorsports||1:46.920|
|2.||Al Salvo||PR1 Motorsports||1:47.819|
|3.||Ed Erlandson||Porter Racing||1:47.994|
|4.||Jerry Andersen||Andersen Racing||1:59.038|
|5.||Sage Marie||Marie Racing||1:51.131|
|6.||Neil Roberts||Roberts Racing||1:57.663|