Millville, NJ – In his first ever F1600 Formula F Championship Series start, Australian Shae Davies recovered from dropping back on lap one to pick through the field, and then inherited the lead for his first win on U.S. soil driving the No. 9 Spectrum/Honda for Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing. Completing the podium were Colin Thompson in a Swift/Honda and Jeremy Grenier in a Citation/Honda.
“I’m not familiar with a rolling start, so I got sort of hung out there,” said Davies. “We were able to fight back, the car was really good, and we took the lead when Matias had his issue.”
More impressively, Davies chassis just arrived in North America last week, and was shaken down in the New Jersey paddock on Thursday night. Davies is headed back to Australia on Monday for a Formula F race in Queensland for the Spectrum team, but is expected back in the States for the next F1600 rounds at Mid-Ohio in late July.
Davies’ teammate Matias Koykka led the opening stages of the race and was looking like a lock for the race win before an incident sent him back through the order to finish sixth for Cape Motorsports.
“It’s of a bummer, I accidently shut off the engine through a corner,” said Koykka. “We were fast today and will be in a good position for tomorrow.”
Thompson finished second for TTO Motorsports after missing the Lime Rock rounds, and coming back from an eighth place starting position.
“I’m glad to be back in a F1600 car,” said Thompson. “Qualifying did not go as planned since we blew the checkered flag, but we made up for it in the race.”
Grenier was third in yet another podium run in the Citation chassis. Grenier also ate into Brandon Newey's Championship lead with his third place result as Newey finished well down the order in 11th.
Championship points leader Newey started last after gearbox problems in practice. Newey, driving a Mygale/Honda for Bryan Herta Autosport with Curb/Agajanian missed qualifying and just barely made the race. Newey had worked his way up to the top five before more problems left him in the pits with just a few laps to go around the 13-turn circuit.
Meanwhile, teammate Garett Grist missed the race start with reported mechanical issues following a third place qualifying effort in the Mygale.
Completing the top ten, behind the podium finishers were Steve Oseth, Art Foster, Koykka, Roberto Lorena, Ross Devoe, Mike Scanlan and John McCusker.
A large storm overnight left the F1600 Formula F Championship Series paddock a mess, with most awnings gone or severely damaged and temperatures quickly escalating to the high 90s before race time at 11:10 a.m. local time as the Formula Race Promotions series share the New Jersey track with ARCA and Trans-Am.
Effective immediately, Sunday’s schedule has changed with race grids set on race one fastest lap times. F1600 is scheduled for 8:00 a.m. local time followed by Atlantics at 8:30 and F2000 at 11:30 local time.
The weekend concludes at New Jersey Motorsports Park on Sunday, July 1 with a 11:30 a.m. local time with race six of the 2012 F1600 season.
Pos No. Name Laps Total Tm Diff Gap Avg. Speed Best Tm Best Spd 1 9 Shae Davies 18 25:27.329 - - 95.461 1:22.870 97.743 2 5 Colin Thompson 18 25:33.954 +6.625 +6.625 95.048 1:23.442 97.073 3 12 Jeremy Grenier 18 25:45.067 +17.738 +11.113 94.365 1:23.980 96.452 4 72 Steve Oseth 18 25:59.401 +32.072 +14.334 93.497 1:24.395 95.977 5 21 Art Foster 18 26:00.461 +33.132 +1.060 93.434 1:25.056 95.231 6 10 Matias Koykka 18 26:05.547 +38.218 +5.086 93.130 1:23.122 97.447 7 17 Roberto Lorena 18 26:14.568 +47.239 +9.021 92.597 1:24.810 95.508 8 14 Ross Devoe 18 26:24.095 +56.766 +9.527 92.040 1:25.792 94.414 9 2 Mike Scanlan 17 25:30.145 1 Lap 1 Lap 89.991 1:26.830 93.286 10 01 John McCusker 17 25:35.547 +5.402 +5.402 89.675 1:26.710 93.415 11 98 Brandon Newey 16 23:28.585 2 Laps 1 Lap 92.007 1:24.289 96.098 DNS 97 Garett Grist 0 -.--- - - - -.--- -