SPEEDSF CHALLENGE - AUGUST 16, 2019 - ROUND 8 @ SONOMA RACEWAY
The sweltering heat joined us at during our SpeedSF Challenge at one of Northern California’s premier tracks. With 35 drivers entered for the Challenge, we knew it was going to be a good one! Overall, the event featured full capacity in all the groups so it truly was one helluva Friday. No super high-dollar exotics came to play, but there were still some great cars out on track with even better drivers behind them. That said, let’s check out the results!
5 entrants dared to play in the S1 class, which pitted high-powered American cars against high-powered German cars. With Max Lytvyn taking home first place thanks to his 1:46.553 lap time put down in his 2019 Porsche GT3RS, it was up to the 2nd and 3rd place drivers to fight for their spots. With only a tenth separating these drivers, it really was any driver’s hot lap to lose. Ben Cho ultimately took home the 2nd place win in his 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE due to a powerful 1:47.315 lap time while Gordon Peng was oh-so-close, finishing 3rd with a 1:47.419 lap time in some 2002 2-door Chevy. Great driving by everyone in this class - keep up the good work!
The result of this class is what is known as a “surprise”. It was Steve Chi and NOT Gary Yeung who took home 1st place. The hard-charging Steve threw down a 1:48.624 lap time in 2010 BMW M3 and beat 2nd place Gary by almost a full second! Gary’s lap time was a 1:49.537 in his Dirty Mango S2000, a result that not everyone expected. Friendly face and world-class gentleman George Kibilov took home 3rd place with his 1:50.141 lap time, just three-tenths ahead of 4th place challenger Jim Hall in his Porsche GT4. For his efforts, his driving ultimately ended up with a 1:50.446 lap time. Close battle for 3rd place on the podium here!
My goodness, 13 drivers entered this stacked class with 2nd and 3rd place also fighting for not-1st-place supremacy. Sean Yepez arrived at Sonoma with a few new upgrades on his 2007 Lotus Exige S. Looks like it helped because he was able to place a 1:49.625 lap time, which put him squarely ahead of 2nd place’s Tarek Latouf who was able to blast around Sonoma in his 1994 Mazda something or other and earned himself a 1:50.168 for his efforts. Gary Wong brought big boy suspension upgrades of his own to Sonoma, so we’ll just say Gary was learning the suspension for the first time. That said, he set a new PB thanks to a 1:50.305 lap time in his 2004 White Garlic Honda S2000.
Three drivers, three winners, 2 pictured. Sohan, we wish you and your S2000 well! At least your 1:52.429 lap time earned you 1st place right? Adam Swan took his not-drifting-1991 Nissan 240SX to a 2nd place win thanks to a great 1:54.701 lap time while Joe McGuigan was a full second behind with his 1:55.891 lap time in a Scion FR-S. A 240SX is not something everyone expects to see on the track but Adam is breaking barriers, kicking ass, and chewing bubblegum…and he’s all out of gum.
Ahem…next time show up to the podium ceremony King!
Anyways - typical Miata goodness in S5 was the norm, with 1st place finisher King Tang breaking the previous 3-year old lap record once held by Alejandro Rios (1:57.826, 2003 BMW 540i on 05/09/16). The new lap record set by King is a 1:57.012 - that’s certainly pushing it! Since he’s the new lap record holder, he earned himself a $50 credit to use at Wine Country Motor Sports! 2nd place was taken home by Wa Huong who was also driving in his Miata and placed a 1:59.580 lap time while Scott Smith put down a 2:00.367 lap time in his 1996 Spec Miata. The MiataGang streak continues in this class - I imagine this to be the case going forward.
This group had such a wide spread of lap times, but given the types of cars that entered this class it was inevitable. Brenden Wright blew away the competition with his Radical SR3 RSX, placing 1st due to his 1:41.957 lap time. Joe Kou firmly took hold of 2nd place in his 2019 Porsche GT3RS and a 1:44.816 laptime, whereas 1:49.322 put down by Lief Storer in his 2009 Nissan GT-R earned a 3rd place win. Always a fun group to watch thanks to the cars that enter here during every Challenge.
Drivers aiming to set fast laps or personal bests for the day only had a limited window as the first full session of the day was the optimal time to do it. The day was only going to get hotter from there. Fortunately, we did witness another record fall, something that’s always good to see as we see our SpeedSF drivers develop.
Excellent job to our drivers who won their places and THANK YOU to everyone who participated in the SpeedSF Challenge! For those who are still chasing podium finishes, more seat time, coaching, and watching videos of the track will certainly get you there!
As we look forward to Round 9 of the SpeedSF Challenge at Thunderhill Raceway (5-mile) on August 30th, we want to say that we truly appreciate our sponsors and participants as it would not be possible without them!
We thank our sponsors Wine Country Motorsports, G-Loc brakes, Titan7 Wheels, Necksgen, and Charles Schwab for their continued and valued support. Please visit their respective websites to show your support and let them know SpeedSF sent you!
Again, our next SpeedSF Challenge will be held at Thunderhill Raceway in Willows, CA. Again, please check out the event website by clicking here. We will see you at our next event!