TOPEKA, Kan. (August 31, 2016) – The 2016 SCCA U.S. Majors Tour is over. In all, upwards of 3,000 competitors took to the track this year during 26 race weekends held throughout the United States. And now that the season is done, Nationwide Points Champions can be crowned.
Tom Wickersham is a multi-class nationwide champ this year, gathering the Touring 4 honors in a Mazda RX-8 and the Touring 3 top spot with a Ford Mustang. But racer Scott Rettich had perhaps the most standout season, winning nationwide championships in Formula Enterprises, Spec Racer Ford and Spec Racer Ford Gen3. Rettich was actually tied for the points lead in two of those classes, but beat out Tray Ayres in SRF3 and Paul Schneider in FE because he gathered up more wins.
Seventeen class championships were decided by fewer than 10 points. The open-wheel classes saw four such instances, beginning with Formula 1000 where Alex Mayer won out over Nicholas Vardis by eight points with both driving JDR F1000s. The Formula Mazda and Formula 500 championships were decided by only four points with Russell Strate Jr. claiming the championship in a Rocketech R-2 over John W. Walbran's Scorpion in F5, and FM driver Matt Machiko beating out Jacob Loomis. Then in Formula Continental, Danny Weyls took the championship by three points over Charles Moran, both driving Van Diemens. And not to be outdone, the Prototype 1 nationwide title was decided by eight points and went to the Norma M20FC of James Davenport who bested Jacek Mucha's JMS 016CP.
The Grand Touring classes had some close finishes, too. The margin of victory was only eight points in GT-Lite where Peter Shadowen wheeled a Honda CRX Si to victory over Michael Kamalian's Mazda Miata. In GT-2, Dylan Doherty drove his Porsche 997 GT3 Cup to the championship over Tom Patton's Sunbeam Tiger by four points. And in GT-3, two points separated winner Gary Bockman in his Mazda RX-3 from the Mazda RX-7 of runner-up George Cichon Jr.
The Touring 1 nationwide championship came down to two Chevrolet Corvette ZO6 racers, with Michael Pettiford claiming victory by four points over Joseph Gaudette. Four points was also the victory margin in American Sedan as Brian Himes in a Ford Mustang beat out Daniel Richardson in a Chevrolet Camaro. B-Spec, too, had a four-point difference between Honda Fit competitors with winner Chi Ho edging out David Daughtery. Then it was Tyler Kicera in Spec Miata who took a four-point lead to the nationwide championship, beating Jim Drago. And Super Touring Lite was decided by a whole seven points and went to Robert Beede in a Honda Civic Si over the Mazda Miata of Brian Laughlin.
Competition was pretty tight in a few Production classes as well. E Production was won by Matthew Reynolds in a Mazda Miata over Breton Williams in a Mazda MX-5 by just six points. And Jason Isley in a Toyota Yaris earned the H Production title by a scant four points over Gregory Gauper in a Honda Civic.
Points for the SCCA U.S. Majors Tour Nationwide Championship are awarded to the top 20 finishers in each Class at the end of a Majors race. Winners earn 25 points, and 21 points go to second. Points are then doled out to others starting with 18 and descending to a single point for the 20th finisher. Only the best seven races count towards a driver's nationwide points total. Below are Nationwide Points Champions with Class: Name, Hometown and Car.
-American Sedan: Brian Himes; Slidell, LA; Ford Mustang
-B-Spec: Chi Ho; Orlando, FL; Honda Fit
-E Production: Matthew Reynolds; Fair Oaks, TX; Mazda Miata
-F Production: Ken Kannard; Sebring, FL; Mazda Miata
-H Production: Jason Isley; Cota de Caza, CA; Toyota Yaris
-Formula 1000: Alex Mayer; Harleysville, PA; JDR F1000
-Formula Atlantic: Ryan Norman; Abbottstown, PA; Mazda Swift 016
-Formula Continental: Danny Weyls; Medina, OH; Van Diemen DP-08
-Formula 500: Russell Strate Jr.; Alden, NY; Rocketech R-2
-Formula Enterprises: Scott Rettich; Columbus, OH; SCCA FE
-Formula F: Neil Verhagen; Mooresville, NC; Honda Mygale
-Formula Mazda: Matt Machiko; Wexford, PA; Formula Mazda
-Formula Vee: Andrew Whitston; Neenah, WI; Protoform P2
-GT-1: Michael Lewis; Poway, CA; Jaguar XKR
-GT-2: Dylan Doherty; Fallbrook, CA; Porsche 997 GT3 CUP
-GT-3: Gary Bockman; Portland, OR; Mazda RX-3
-GT-Lite: Peter Shadowen; West Palm Beach, FL; Honda CRX Si
-Prototype 1: James Devenport; Modesto, CA; Norma M20FC
-Prototype 2: Jake Theilmann; Kiel, WI; Stohr WF1
-Spec Miata: Tyler Kicera; Manheim, PA; Spec Miata
-Spec Racer Ford: Scott Rettich; Columbus, OH; SCCA Enterprises SRF
-Spec Racer Ford 3: Scott Rettich; Columbus, OH; Spec Racer Ford Gen3
-Super Touring Lite: Robert Beede; Northampton, MA; Honda Civic Si
-Super Touring Under: Oscar Jackson Jr.; Chino, CA; Scion FR-S
-Touring 1: Michael Pettiford; Louisville, CO; Chevrolet Corvette ZO6
-Touring 2: Tim Kezman; Franksville, WI; Porsche 997
-Touring 3: Tom Wickersham; Piedmont, CA; Ford Mustang
-Touring 4: Tom Wickersham; Piedmont, CA; Mazda RX-8
The SCCA U.S. Majors Tour is a gateway to the SCCA National Championship Runoffs, presented by Garmin VIRB, being held September 19-25 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Drivers earn an invite to the annual festival by participating in a minimum of three separate U.S. Majors Tour events and have a minimum of three individual race finishes, all in the same Class. One route to the Runoffs is for drivers to score points in the top 50 percent of the nationwide point standings within a Class. Another option is for competitors to either finish in the top 10 of a Conference Class with 20 or fewer participants, or be in the top 50 percent of a Class with more than 20 drivers.
The Sports Car Club of America, Inc., founded in 1944, is a 67,000-member motorsports organization that incorporates all facets of autocross, rally and road racing at both club and professional levels. With headquarters in Topeka, Kansas, the SCCA annually sanctions over 2,000 events through its 115 Regions and professional subsidiary. Much of the SCCA's activities are made possible with support from the following Official Partners: Chevrolet, the Official Truck of the SCCA; Garmin VIRB, the Official Camera of SCCA; Hawk Performance, the Official Brake Products of SCCA; Mobil 1, the Official Oil of SCCA; SafeRacer, the Official Safety Provider of SCCA; Sunoco, the Official Fuel of SCCA; and Tire Rack, the Official Tire Retailer of SCCA. To learn more, please visit www.scca.com.
Photo: Scott Rettich claimed SCCA U.S. Major Tour Nationwide Points championships in three classes this year.
Credit: Digital Automotive Depictions