Runoffs, track records, championships and more!

Eric Thompson (right) after winning one of two Hard Charger Awards at the 2016 SCCA Runoffs in his wild Celica!

Eric Thompson (right) after winning one of two Hard Charger Awards at the 2016 SCCA Runoffs in his wild Celica!

We’ve got much to catch you up on, culminating with the 2016 SCCA Runoffs, so let’s get to it!

Team Flatout visited New Jersey Motorsports Park August 12-14 to run the big Summer Thunder weekend, which featured Pro IT racing. Amy Mills, Whit Gregg, Dave Kuchrawy, JT Coupal, Stephen Pope, and company prez Nick Leverone all raced. JT won the Spec Miata races, while Nick, driving our number 90 Miata, punched above his weight in ITS—and won! A special shout-out to Pope, who’s having an outstanding season it the ITA class!

Then it was up to Lime Rock, where August 25 saw a Drivers Club SM race. Kuchrawy, JT, and Joe Schubert all acquitted themselves well. We hung around the Rock all weekend for an SCCA Regional race, supporting a bunch of quick drivers. In addition to JT, Joe, and Stephen Pope, Josh Kaidanow and Wendy Cappola piloted Flatout Miatas, while Eric Thompson ran our Honda S2000 in STU. It was great to see Hugh McHaffie and Craig McHaffie, too! At this event, we got to serve dinner to the true heroes of motorsports: the volunteer workers! A blast was had by all.

September 9-11 found us back in the Bay State at Palmer Motorsports Park. JT (who wrapped up the Pro IT SM class season championship!), Amy, Whit, Dave, Joe, Wendy, Tom Paolino, and Doug Fambrough all made the scene, keeping the crew hopping!

The following week, Watkins Glen was our home for another SCCA race, the Fun One. Usual suspects Pope, JT, and Joe were all fast, as was Tom Mariano. In just one of many highlights, Leverone set three track records (short and long course in STL, short course in Spec Miata) in company cars. Remember, you can rent these Miatas anytime!

Next up was the Big Dance: SCCA Runoffs, held this year at Mid-Ohio. Leverone qualified 14th in Doug Fisher’s gorgeous Spec Miata. He was punted on lap one but battled back from dead last to midpack. Nick also ran Jon Farbman’s rotary-powered, Flatout-built Miata to a fourth-place (and top Mazda) finish in STL. The McHaffies’ MX-5 was blindingly fast, but a Flatout mistake cost them a chance to compete, which we regret like hell. Meanwhile, Eric Thompson was overcoming teething pains in his wild All-Trac Celica. He earned Hard Charger Awards in both STU (driving from last to seventh) and STL (last to 12th). Way to go Eric!

NASA Nationals were taking place at the Glen the same weekend as the Runoffs. Amy and Whit decided to compete there, but things didn’t work out well: Amy got whacked hard on the first lap, then sat dead in the water while the field went screaming past at race pace the next lap. She was not amused.

Finally, we visited Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park in early October. JT Coupal won races and wrapped up still more points crowns. Tony and Kent Vaccaro rented, and it was great to see them, as well as Wendy, Whit, Dave K, Joe Schubert, Doug Fisher, and Matt Koskinen, who ran his sweet 2016 Global Cup MX-5 in both STL and T3. We also welcomed some terrific new clients to the Flatout Family: Ryan Duke raced number 00 all weekend, while Ray Kobs ran the test day!

JT Coupal hustles his Flatout Motorsports Miata at Thompson.

JT Coupal hustles his Flatout Motorsports Miata at Thompson.

No writeup is complete without a hat-tip to our amazing employees and crew. Whether they’re at the track or the shop, they work tirelessly to make all the good stuff happen. Andrew Burke, Evan Consolazio, Adam Desrosiers, Seamus Erskine, Dave Goulet, Jody Leverone, Rob Newton– take a well deserved bow!

Whew. That’ll have to do for now, though we’re just back from an enduro at VIR (spoiler alert: podium!) and we’re busy prepping for our Winter Series.