Honda, Acura Racers Claim Four SCCA National Championships
10/3/2017 10:12:00 AM
- Podium Sweeps in STL, Formula F
- Honda drivers also claim STU, GTL titles
- Record 105 Honda, Acura entries reflect impact of Honda Racing Line
Honda and Acura racers won four Sports Car Club of America national championship titles, including podium sweeps in both the highly-competitive Super Touring Light and Formula F classes, at the 2017 SCCA National Championship Runoffs, contested this past weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
A total of 105 Honda and Acura racers, the largest Runoffs field for the manufacturer since the start of the Honda Racing Line grassroots motorsports program in 2009, traveled to the legendary Indianapolis track's road course for this year's 54th annual national championships. Honda and Acura racers took part in 14 of the weekend's 28 classes of racing, tying the manufacturer's previous class participation record for the Runoffs.
In addition to the record turnout, it also was a weekend of excellent results for Honda and Acura, with four national championships – backed by another seven podium finishes – in the 14 races contested at this year's Runoffs.
"What a great experience for our Honda Racing Line members," said Jeff Barrow, Manager, HPD Commercial Motorsports. "With more than 100 Honda and Acura racers at the historic Indianapolis Motor Speedway, our drivers and teams battled for victory in more than a dozen races, and the results demonstrate the success of our grassroots motorsports program and the skills of our racers. From our on-site technical support to our pinnacle-level hospitality, we wanted to show our appreciation to our customers."
In winning Formula F with his Honda-powered Mygale, Matthew Crowley of Tampa, Florida ran a mistake-free last lap and took the victory in Friday's race. With 28 cars of the 36-car field powered by the durable and sporty Honda Fit engine, Hondas took nine of the top-10 spots.
Crowley won a tight battle with the other podium finishers, Zach Holden and Jonathan Kotyk, with nose-to-tail racing throughout the 19-lap race, typical of this developmental open-wheel category.
"To be able to say I've won the Runoffs at Indy, is just an incredible feeling," Crowley said. "The Honda power is really reliable and really great and it drove me to victory."
Super Tourlng Light
In Saturday's STL race, there were 24 Honda and Acura entries, and the manufacturer claimed the top five spots at the checkers. Adam Roberts led the way, taking his Honda Civic CRX Si to his first Super Touring Light championship. Eric Kutil finished second, for the second year in a row, with Garret Dunn rounding out the podium finishers in his CRX Si.
Roberts and Kutil battled throughout the race, and it came down to the last lap, where both drivers had to avoid traffic, but Kutil was unable to get around Roberts, who took the win with a two-car length margin.
"They say [Honda is] the power of dreams," Roberts said. "Well today, Honda powered my dreams."
Super Touring Under
There were plenty of strong Honda and Acura contenders in Sunday's STU race, with last year's STU winner, Kevin Boehm, leaping to the lead at the start in his Civic Type-R powered 2017 Honda Civic Si. Kevin then surrendered the lead to Rob Huffmaster in his Honda S2000, but mechanical issues would later sideline both cars.
Max Gee, a driving instructor at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course Driving School, was there to pick up the lead, taking his Honda Prelude to Victory Circle, holding off the rest of the field for the remaining 11 laps.
"It would have been great to win last year," Gee said, "but this year at this track is unbelievable. It still hasn't sunk in yet and I don't believe it will for a while." At the 2016 Runoffs, at his "home" Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Gee's race came to an early end due to a mechanical failure on the opening lap.
Video recaps from this weekend's Honda and Acura action from the SCCA Runoffs are being posted on the "Honda Racing/HPD" YouTube channel. Produced by the Carolinas Production Group, the video packages can be found in the 2017 HPD Trackside Video Playlist at: https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV.
A full list of Honda Racing/HPD champions and podium results appears below.
1) Matthew Cowley, Mygale FF Honda
2) Zach Holden, Mygale FF Honda
3) Jonathon Kotyk, Mygale FF Honda
3) John Phillips, 2015 Honda Fit
1) Adam Roberts, Honda CRX Si
2) Eric Kutil, Honda Civic Si
3) Garret Dunn, Honda CRX Si
1) Christopher Bovis, Honda CRX
2) Peter Shadowen, Honda CRX
1) Max Gee, Honda Prelude
3) Vesa Silegren, Honda CRX
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