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October 09, 2014
Mällinen Ready for Runoffs Championship Race

Max Mällinen
Max Mällinen

Three qualifying sessions between now and Thursday will determine the grid order for the 2014 SCCA Runoffs Championship Formula F race taking place Friday morning. For Max Mällinen and the No. 10 Spectrum/Honda from Swan Motorsports, those three sessions represent a trio of key windows for track time at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. In six of seven previous SCCA Majors this season the 16-year-old has started on the front row.

The 2014 SCCA Majors Formula F Champion is fully immersed in the Runoffs this week – and is going for one of the biggest prizes in American road racing with a win at the storied annual event.

"I'm really liking the circuit and with fast and consistent times from testing, I think we have a good qualifying and race pace. I'm looking forward to good results further in the week,” said Mällinen.

His 25 competitors all share the fact that they have run a number of events across the United States to qualify for an invitation to the race, and all have visions of standing atop the podium on Friday morning.

There is no point in finishing second – the winner is remembered as the SCCA Runoffs National Champion. Second place, meanwhile, looks forward to regrouping next year. Last year’s winner Tim Kautz is among Mällinen’s biggest rivals – and those two tied in points for the National title this year, with the tie-breaker going to Mällinen as he had more victories. Kautz has three Runoffs victories on his long resume.

Mällinen is a newcomer to the Runoffs and faces his biggest challenge of 2014 despite four SCCA Majors victories this season.

Laguna Seca presents a course with extreme elevation changes and both fast and slow corners. Mällinen has had two brief previous visits to the track in his Australian-built Spectrum chassis, but with many Laguna Seca veteran drivers, this track may prove to be a challenge.

Mällinen joins his father, Michael, who is also eying a National Championship, but in Formula Atlantic. Both are running cars under the Swan Motorsports tent, with the trained eyes of engineer Mirl Swan looking to add to his history of Runoffs victories

The race is scheduled for Friday morning, 10:30am Pacific time, with live video coverage available on http://www.speedcasttv.com/.
Pacific Mountain Central Eastern International

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