LINDENHURST, NY. (August 14th, 2013) After a promising debut in the F2000 Championship Series two weeks earlier, Jose Armida looked to build upon that this past weekend with the Group-A Racing team. Although the race results may not show it, Armida made great progress along with displaying great race craft.
The weekend started with Thursday testing. The Group-A Racing team & Armida were looking to take full advantage of the 4 hours of track time to develop new pieces on the car & get Jose more experience. Sadly, just as Jose was getting in the car the clouds opened up. With the weather looking clear for the rest of the weekend everybody decided to not go out, to not risk the car.
Friday morning presented the first opportunity on track for the F2000 competitors. Jose picked up where he left off two weeks ago ending the session in 10th. But with that position, he had closed the gap between his time and the leaders. Just after lunch time was the second practice session of the day. Unfortunately, on the opening flying lap Armida caught a puncture in his left rear tire causing him to hit the tire wall in the keyhole. This put a big whole into the program in terms of development of the setup and gaining Jose the very precious seat time.
Going into Saturday Group-A Racing and Jose were behind the eight ball since they had missed 50% of the practice time with the puncture the day before. Despite that, Jose put in his best qualifying position to qualify 10th for the first race of the weekend. In the race Armida was moving up through the field until coming upon another car. The two went into a hard battle for the 8th position. Jose tried the outside pass multiple times with the other car being very ‘defensive.’ On the second to last lap it looked to be that Armida had finally cleared the other competitor on the outside in turn four. Sadly, the car slid wide on the exit of the turn making contact with his left front to Armida’s right rear. This sent Jose into the air and spinning into the grass.
The Group-A Racing team got the car back together again from the contact for Jose to get back out the next morning for qualifying for the second race of the weekend. However, with changing track conditions Jose struggled with the balance of the car and could only manage 13th. Jose and the team had an extensive debrief at the end of the session using data acquisition, video and good communication to come up with the proper changes to make the car better for the race.
The changes worked and Jose was displaying tremendous race craft again. He got a great start to gain positions and continued to move forward throughout the race. Jose would get as high as 7th before running into a problem with oil on the track from a lap car. This caused him to fall back a bit and yet again not get the result he deserved in the race with uncontrollable bad luck.
"It was a good weekend overall, we had some issues out of our hands, the Group-A Racing team worked very hard along the weekend and that was one of the keys to make the great progress we made. I want to thank everyone who was involved for the great job!" said Jose Armida
“Jose did a tremendous job this weekend.” Commented team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “He has had a lot of bad luck with the puncture and other issues. The thing that really impressed me is how he put a bad situation that happened behind him immediately and moved up to continue to improve. He never let any of the uncontrollable drama effect him, which is not an easy thing to do. To top it off, he passed alot of cars here, and showed very good resilience in being passed in the races. He continues to improve with more experience and I hope we can continue to put programs together for him.”
You can see the races from Jose’s car on their YouTube channel www.YouTube.com/GroupARacing