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Connole wins first Spec MX-5 race


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#1
Todd Lamb

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Alton, Virginia (March 10, 2018) – Jason Connole, of Raleigh, North Carolina, led a six-deep pack of Mazdas to the checkered flag on Saturday at Virginia International Raceway to take the inaugural win of the Spec MX-5 Challenge East Series.

 

Connole crossed the line in his Protech Bedliners/Trimark Digital/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5 just 0.097-second ahead of Finksburg, Maryland’s Peter Ensor. Ensor had set up Connole with a draft from second position but couldn’t pull his Mazda in front at the finish.

 

“It was a phenomenal race,” Connole said. “It was so much fun. It was back and forth the whole race, beating and banging, and the last couple of laps I got myself to second, got to first, and then tried to hold them off. The draft on the back straight was crazy, I had a gap and every time they closed up. But I came out first at the line.”

 

Ensor tried to make his final push at the top of VIR’s roller coaster and headed back down the hill to the finish line but was left less than a half-car length behind. That half car length remained the difference between Connole’s $1,000 first prize and the $500 Ensor will take home.

 

“It was a great race. I was in the top three pretty much the whole race. We were fighting the whole race. It was a lot of fun with these cars.”

 

Marching through the field from his sixth spot on the grid was Zack Month, of Scarsdale, New York. Month marched through the line of traffic one at a time, bouncing onto the podium with a pass around Nick Bruni with two laps to go. Month also earned the Hard Charger and the $500 product credit from Winding Road to go with his $250 for finishing third.

 

“I’m not sure any words can describe this,” Month said. “I’m really happy with the finish, but it was a little hectic out there. I had the speed, it was just a matter of patience. It’s hard to do that the last 10 minutes of the race. John Allen gave me an awesome bump draft. He really came up on me going through Oak Tree and pushed me past fourth place. At the end it was me and Nick Bruni side-by-side, and I’m just really happy.”

 

Bruni finished fourth, followed by the Island Motor Cars/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda of Manny Martinez. Polesitter John Allen lost his lead with a bobble coming out of turn two on the opening lap and finished sixth.

 

Connole picked up 20 points toward the season-ending prize of $100,000 toward the 2019 Global MX-5 Cup.

 

ALTON, Virginia – Official race results from Saturday’s Spec MX-5 Challenge East Series Round 1 of 10 at Virginia International Raceway with finish position, starting position in parentheses, name and sponsor listed.

 

1. (2), Jason Connole, Protech Bedliners/Trimark Digital/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
2. (3), Peter Ensor, Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
3. (6), Zack Month, Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
4. (4), Nick Bruni, Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
5. (5), Manny Martinez, Island Motor Cars/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
6. (1), John Allen, iRacing/Definied Autoworks/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
7. (9), Tyler Harrell, JTC Racing/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
8. (8), Jose Garcia, KEEM Corp./Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
9. (7), Assen Rachev, Stable Energies/Possien-Hall Motorsports Development/BGN Racing/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5
10. (10), Joe Catania, New York Spine & Wellness Center/Atlanta Speedwerks Mazda MX-5


  • ChrisA, Danica Davison and Richard Astacio like this

Full disclosure: SMAC chairman, my opinions do not reflect anything to do with the SMAC unless specifically stated.

Todd Lamb
Atlanta Speedwerks
www.atlspeedwerks.com
SpeedShift Transmissions - reliability and performance

Spec Miata / Spec Boxster / Spec Cayman specialist

Spec MX-5 Challenge Series Director

Global MX-5 Cup team

MX5 Cup Champion - Has won a Season in the MX5 Cup Survive the 25, NASA Thunderhill - Survive the 25, NASA Thunderhill NASA Champs Winner - NASA Champs Winner ARRC Champion - Won the ARRC Race in a Spec Miata We have a Winnah! - Won their 1st race... Congratulations! Series Champ - Won a points based series in a Spec Miata Donor - Made PayPal donation Bona fide - A bonafide Spec Miata driver June Sprints winner  - June Sprints winner Majors Winner - World Challenge Winner - World Challenge Winner

#2
Richard Astacio

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What happened to Jason on Sunday? 


Richard Astacio

2003 Spec Miata VVT & 2013 Cup Car
 

We have a Winnah! - Won their 1st race... Congratulations! Donor - Made PayPal donation Bona fide - A bonafide Spec Miata driver

#3
OrangeCrush86

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Any video?


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#4
Todd Lamb

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There are several in-car videos posted on Facebook (they were live videos) on the Spec MX-5 page at:

 

https://www.facebook.../SpecMX5Racing/

 

Like the page and you can set it up to receive notifications when we go live with race videos.


Full disclosure: SMAC chairman, my opinions do not reflect anything to do with the SMAC unless specifically stated.

Todd Lamb
Atlanta Speedwerks
www.atlspeedwerks.com
SpeedShift Transmissions - reliability and performance

Spec Miata / Spec Boxster / Spec Cayman specialist

Spec MX-5 Challenge Series Director

Global MX-5 Cup team

MX5 Cup Champion - Has won a Season in the MX5 Cup Survive the 25, NASA Thunderhill - Survive the 25, NASA Thunderhill NASA Champs Winner - NASA Champs Winner ARRC Champion - Won the ARRC Race in a Spec Miata We have a Winnah! - Won their 1st race... Congratulations! Series Champ - Won a points based series in a Spec Miata Donor - Made PayPal donation Bona fide - A bonafide Spec Miata driver June Sprints winner  - June Sprints winner Majors Winner - World Challenge Winner - World Challenge Winner

#5
ChrisA

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What happened to Jason on Sunday? 

 

Rain race and was unfamiliar with the Yoko wets. Went off in T1 on first lap. Lost some time in the grass and worked way to 7th for finish.


Chris

 

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#6
OrangeCrush86

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Watched a few of the videos. The cars sure are evenly matched, that's for sure.


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#7
Richard Astacio

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Got it...after you got used to the wets how did they feel? How does the dry tire feel?

 

I remember last year my first race on pzeros HDD compound, it was no walk in the park. I spun scrubbing tires coming out of the pits!!!!! Drago would of been proud!!

The wet pzeros were good compared to the dry. 


Richard Astacio

2003 Spec Miata VVT & 2013 Cup Car
 

We have a Winnah! - Won their 1st race... Congratulations! Donor - Made PayPal donation Bona fide - A bonafide Spec Miata driver

#8
Richard Astacio

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Watched a few of the videos. The cars sure are evenly matched, that's for sure.

 

running without the hardtop helps keeping the cars close. 


Richard Astacio

2003 Spec Miata VVT & 2013 Cup Car
 

We have a Winnah! - Won their 1st race... Congratulations! Donor - Made PayPal donation Bona fide - A bonafide Spec Miata driver




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