Race report: Pope dominates at the Glen!

Veteran hotshoe and Flatout Arrive and Drive client Stephen Pope, pictured here (center), is still smiling after a dominant weekend at Watkins Glen: 2 poles and 2 wins in the ITA class!

We’ll come back to Stephen, but we have a whole bunch of racing to catch you up on …

June 2-4 we visited New Jersey Motorsports Park’s Lightning circuit, renting Miatas to Nai Nan Ko, Erik Beck, Rick Miller and Seth Mansfield. All four racers ran strong on both Saturday and Sunday.

June 13 found us doing a one-day test at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The idea was to get track time for some Richard Childress Racing Xfinity Series drivers who will race at Mid-Ohio later this season. With Chris Cook instructing, future NASCAR stars Daniel Hemric, Brandon Jones, and Ben Kennedy wrung out our Miatas. Check out the group shot at the end of this post!

That test was on a Tuesday. To indicate how busy the crew’s been, those same four cars were transported, inspected, serviced, transported again, and ready to race June 16-17 at Lime Rock Park. Just ask renters Kurt Schmid, Wendy Cappola, Ray Kobs, and Ryan Duke, all of whom had excellent weekends at the Rock. What a jam-packed event that was: Doug Fisher also raced, as did Linda Lemelin, Stephen Pope, Hugh and Craig McHaffie, the Peter Tonellis (both Senior and Junior!), and Joe Stadelmann (who won everything in sight in his 944!).

Because we’re gluttons for punishment, we also dispatched a crew to Road America that weekend to support our favorite Pacific Northwesterners, Whit Gregg and Amy Mills, at the legendary June Sprints. Naturally, Amy and Whit raced hard and did well!

Next it was on to an SCCA Majors event at Watkins Glen, June 22-25. Hotshoe Eric Thompson brought both his Celica All-Trac Turbo and his Miata—and was rewarded with an STU win in the former and a fourth-place SM finish in the latter. Craig McHaffie earned an incredible come-from behind STL victory on Sunday (check out his in-car vid!), and Hugh got the feel of his new MX-5. Amy and Whit had excellent weekends; Amy qualified sixth both days in the stacked SM class, running at the sharp end of the field from start to finish. Linda Lemelin was with us again, and company president Nick Leverone ran Doug Fisher’s Flatout-built car and grabbed a pair of podiums. The Tonellis drove both their Miata and a new Toyota FRS we’re developing for them (actually, Flatout is building a trio of FRS/BRZs for the family, and we’re excited—these cars are fast!).

Here’s that Craig McHaffie in-car:

After a much-needed weekend off, we trundled to Road America for another test for the Richard Childress Racing guys. Then it was straight to the Glen again for SCCA Regional and Pro-IT racing. As noted, Stephen Pope absolutely tore it up. James McCann was quick, and it was great seeing old pals Keith Hammitte and Anne Lamport Hammitte in their BMWs. Joe Stadelmann put together another strong event, while Leverone ran one of our rental Miatas for another pair of podiums.

You can imagine how much work goes into all this. Huge thanks to Andrew Burke, Evan Consolazio, Adam Desrosiers, Dave Goulet, and Jody Leverone for tireless work at both the shop and the track. Also, help us welcome new guys Kyle Santos and Cory Bentley to Team Flatout—we’ll be telling you more about them soon!

L to R: Flatout’s Andrew Burke, RCR’s Daniel Hemric, Flatout’s Adam Desrosiers, racer and coach Chris Cook, RCR’s Brandon Jones, RCR’s Ben Kennedy, Flatout’s Dave Goulet.