Championship Could Be Decided at Mid-Ohio
Salem, NH – The Atlantic Championship Series will be running rounds seven and eight of their 10 round season, this Fourth of July weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. After completing rounds five and six at Virginia International Raceway in June, the Atlantic Championship Series has past the halfway mark of its season. This is point in the season in which drops start making a large difference in Championship Points. Similar to the F2000 Championship Series and the Formula 1600F Series, the Atlantic Championship Series will drop each driver’s two lowest points scoring races from calculations.
Daniel Burkett, the young Canadian driving for K-Hill Motorsports, has the possibility of wrapping up the season Championship title at Mid-Ohio this weekend. With his six wins out of seven races, four pole positions, and three fastest laps, Burkett has 269 points, not including any drops. This puts him currently at the top of the points standing with Jimmy Simpson of Atlantic Creations and his Swift 014 Atlantic Challenge car holding second in the points standings with 248 points.
Burkett and Simpson have shown strong competition against each other all season. Most qualifying and race sessions, the fastest lap time switches between the two on almost every lap. Although their current points are very close together, Burkett has one strong advantage over his closest competitor. That is, that Burkett had one race he did not finish and only has a single point to drop for that race. Simpson on the other hand, has had a very good finishing record so far this season, making his drops much higher in the points count.
Conner Kearby of K-Hill Motorsports, son of teammate Gaston Kearby, and Keith Grant of Polestar are very close in championship points. Only eight points separate these two in the race for third, without taking drops into consideration. Both of these drivers have had very consistent results throughout the season, so chances are that they will most likely be dropping a similar amount of points.
Starting at Mid-Ohio, it no longer is just about how well one driver finishes, every driver at the top needs to take into consideration where their rivals are finishing.
Mid-Ohio should be very competitive this coming weekend as the Atlantic Championship Series seems to tighten up its field. The drivers have now raced with each other enough to start picking up on the driving styles of their competitors, as well as becoming comfortable with themselves in the powerful Atlantic cars.
Enough races have been completed to know which drivers are generally at the top, and which ones are a threats to podium finishers. Competition should be turning up from here on out and the Atlantic drivers are prepared to put on a show.
The Atlantic drivers should get in plenty of time to learn the Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course full race circuit if they have never been there before. Starting on Thursday July 3rd competitors will have the option to run Twilight Testing between 5pm and 8pm local time, followed by an official practice day on Friday the fourth, and races on Saturday and Sunday.