Tuesday, June 21, 2005

South Bend Sprints at Gingerman Raceway

June 20, 2005 – South Haven, MI

This past weekend brought the best finishes ever for Phil Mather and the CG-Lock / Total Fitness SpecMiata. Gingerman Raceway (www.gingermanraceway.com) was a brand new racetrack for Mather, and there was a lot to do.

Friday evening was used for testing so Mather could learn the track and the crew could get the car set up. By the end of the night, it was clear that Mather was going to be competitive, posting lap times well within the reach of the leaders.

Qualifying on Saturday reinforced Mather’s confidence when he brought the car to a second place starting position. At the start of the race, Mather got a great start, and got into the lead until turn three. Rob Huffmaster was able to sneak on the inside of the turn and get by. Huffmaster, who has been to this race track many times before, was able to pull away from Mather, however. Mather then continued to drive a consistent race. When lapped traffic was reached in the middle of the race, Alan Faitel was able to get by Phil. The two of them battled for the rest of the race, finishing almost nose to tail. It was some excellent, clean racing and Mather brought the CG-Lock / Total Fitness SpecMiata home to an impressive third place finish in class.

Sunday brought another impressive qualifying run, with Mather bringing the car to another second place starting position, with Mather being only one of a few people to improve their lap time from Saturday. Race two brought a very exciting start, with quite a bit of bumper banging going on behind Mather. Going into turn one, Mather was hit from behind, getting him slightly out of shape. He was able to keep control of the racecar, only to get hit again in turn two. This time he was pushed into the eventual race winner, Rob Huffmaster, and knocked him sideways. Huffmaster stayed in control of the car, and Mather was able to move inside. Headed into turn three, there was a four car battle for the same corner. Mike Neal was pushing on Huffmaster’s bumper and the two cars got slightly ahead going into the turn. Again, Mather was hit from behind, knocking him sideways through the turn. After letting the driver behind know his dissatisfaction, Mather was able to leave the battling pack behind to concentrate on keeping the cars that were ahead in his sights. Unfortunately, all of the bumping had knocked the alignment out on Mather’s car, making it more difficult to control. Mather teamed up with Mike Neal, in the SM class and both tried to run down Huffmaster, who was still within sight. Mather drove the car to the absolute limit, and kept the leader in sight for the entire race. At the end, Mather brought the CG-Lock / Total Fitness SpecMiata home to a second place finish, tying his best finish ever.

“I’m disappointed that some driver’s can’t control their racecars very well, but I am very happy to get a second place finish with the CG-Lock / Total Fitness SpecMiata!” With the help of his crew, Cory and Katie B., this was the best overall racing weekend of Mather’s career. First place is just around the corner!

Mather’s next race will be the July 23-25 at the Second Annual SpecMiata Milwaukee Cup at Road America, in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Last years race drew over 60 entries. This year there will be even more. CG-Lock (www.cg-lock.com) has once again offered CG-Locks for prizes and donations.

Stay tuned to www.cg-lockracer.blogspot.com for continued race reports and updates on the CG-Lock / Total Fitness SpecMiata!