Friday: Audette Quick in Dry and Wet
Watkins Glen, NY – Thirty-three F2000 cars put in a few laps in a dry morning practice session before the skies opened at Watkins Glen International for the rest of the day. Championship leader Remy Audette was quickest in the dry, and will clinch the Championship tomorrow as the green flag drops for race one of the double header season finale weekend on Saturday. Hours later, on a full wet race track, Audette was fastest yet again in a session that did not see full attendance.
More cars are expected to push the field pass the 35 mark as a few drivers and teams missed the day’s sessions. However, weather conditions are expected to be less-than-positive, with more rain, cool temperatures and heavy win predicted.
“We did two laps in the dry and then it started raining,” said Audette. “We had rain tires sitting in the pits but there was an issue fitting them on the wheels with our new brake calipers. I am looking forward to the rain, it’s a lot of fun, but you need to be careful.”
Audette added that the fitment issues with his wheels are now fixed. The Canadian ran away from a tough F2000 field in the rain at Mosport in 2010, winning by 20 seconds in a half-hour race.
20011 Masters Class Champion Tim Minor was second fastest behind Audette in the limited dry running, and did not run the rain session.
“There’s too much to lose,” said Minor. “I don’t need more practice in the rain, and if it continues to rain the track is going to change anyway.” Minor already had put a full wet set up on his No. 88 Van Diemen.
Rob Nicholas was third fastest in his first appearance since Watkins Glen in June, sporting a new aero package on his Van Diemen.
Nathan Morcom, meanwhile, has moved to the RFR chassis after contesting the previous rounds of the year in a Van Diemen for Primus Racing.
Another storyline for the weekend is the a big battle for second in points amount Minor, rookies Kyle Connery and Robert La Rocca, and two-time 2011 race winner Chris Livengood.
Livengood did not go out for the rain session, and has sat on pole at Watkins Glen twice. Additionally, Livengood said that he would rather have a full wet or full dry race, instead of a drying track or a situation in which it starts to rain during the race, as it did to open the season in April at VIR.
Results can be viewed at www.F2000Series.com, under the “results” tab.
Saturday morning qualifying for race one gets going at 11:25 local time. The green flag is scheduled to drop at 3:55 on Saturday, and Sunday again features a 11:25 morning qualifying and 3:55 race start prior to the Series awards ceremony. Stay tuned to F2000Series.com for updates.