Morgan Wins by a Car-Length at VIR

April 12, 2010
Morgan took his first win since 2007.

Alton, VA – Cole Morgan held off Remy Audette and capitalized on Daniel Erickson’s misfiring engine to take his first F2000 win since taking the 2007 F2000 Championship title. Erickson, the Australian rookie, led from pole and had pulled out to a two second gap as Morgan and Audette diced for second. With three laps to go the Zetec in Erickson’s #02 started to misfire, and he ended up a distant tenth with a very sick-sounding motor. Fabio Orsolon finished third, making it an American-Canadian-Brazilian podium

“The start kind of just happened,” said Morgan, who went from fifth to second before taking the lead in his K-Hill Motorsports Van Diemen. “We were turning some really good laps and then the tires started to go away and Remy (Audette) caught me. (Daniel) Erickson slowed near the end and I knew Remy was all over me and I made sure he couldn’t get any runs.”

Morgan’s margin of victory was four-tenths of a second, compared to round one’s two-tenths margin of victory. Both VIR races were run in their entirety without any full-course cautions.

Audette, who was sporting a Sponge Bob charter on his steering wheel, commented: “I was pushing hard and felt faster than Cole in some areas, the team gave me an awesome car. During the last few laps I was hoping he would make a mistake but we’ll take second.”

Fabio Orsolon finished third for the second day in a row ahead of his teammate Victor Carbone, who won round one and Rob Nicholas, who wins the Masters Class.

Scarallo set fast race lap and finished 7th,

We struggled all weekend with broken parts,” Nicholas, driving under the K-Fast awning, said. “We got a great start, going to seventh from 13th and I had hooked up with (Jonathan) Scarallo for a few laps before he went off at Oak Tree.”

Scarallo started fourth and got shuffled backwards on the start. The young American was able to work his way back to fifth in the 33-car field, while setting fastest race lap. He recovered from a mid-race spin to finish seventh, behind his R-Sport teammate Keith McCrone.

Tim Kautz and Bobby Caldwell, both driving for Liberty Motorsports finished eighth and ninth, and Daniel Erickson hung on for tenth.

Erickson was running away until a spark plug wire ended his day.

Daniel Erickson nailed his second-ever rolling start and pulled a nice lead out on Cole Morgan. The Australian, driving for Primus Racing, scored poles for both rounds, resetting the track record. He was caught off guard by his first rolling start in round one and missed winning the race by two-tenths of a second. That wasn’t the case at VIR today, as he controlled the race pace until an unfortunate engine problem brought him home in tenth.

“The car was absolutely perfect, the guys did a great job but I’m absolutely devastated,” commented Erickson. “I had a 2.5 second gap and then I heard an unfortunate noise from the motor and my lead was gone.”

Rookie Billy McLaughlin, who had a hard crash during Thursday testing, finished a solid 15th for K-Hill, behind Dave Weitzenhof, Tom Fatur, Mark Defer and Bob Wright.

22-year old Chris Keller, who wasn’t officially driving on Sunday until about 8pm on Saturday night, finished 19th after the crew of the #83 prepped the chassis late into the night. A last second setup was dialed in after qualifying.

A lap one incident took out Phil Lombardi and Tim Minor, who both were expected to be quick at VIR. Chris Gumprecht lost his gearbox early in the race and Chris Livengood, driving the only Pinto-powered entry in the field, was running solidly in the top 15 before an off-course excursion in turn one put him back in the pack.

Craig Clawson, who has started every F2000 Championship Series race to date, earned the CellMark Paper Hard Charger by improving 10 positions from start to finish.

The 2010 F2000 season continues at Road Atlanta May 6-8.

Provisional Race Results:

Pos No. Name Laps Total Tm Diff Gap Avg. Speed Best Tm Best Spd 1 1 Cole Morgan 14 29:40.890 - - 92.542 1:55.686 101.758 2 21 Remy Audette 14 29:41.359 +0.469 +0.469 92.518 1:55.657 101.784 3 26 Fabio Orsolon 14 29:45.628 +4.738 +4.269 92.297 1:55.967 101.512 4 23 Victor Carbone 14 29:51.663 +10.773 +6.035 91.986 1:56.438 101.101 5 89 Rob Nicholas/M 14 29:57.909 +17.019 +6.246 91.666 1:56.383 101.149 6 5 Keith McCrone/M 14 30:03.102 +22.212 +5.193 91.402 1:56.867 100.730 7 22 Jonathon Scarallo 14 30:04.367 +23.477 +1.265 91.338 1:55.537 101.889 8 36 Tim Kautz/M 14 30:05.748 +24.858 +1.381 91.269 1:56.972 100.639 9 80 Bobby Caldwell 14 30:06.038 +25.148 +0.290 91.254 1:57.115 100.517 10 02 Daniel Erickson 14 30:08.040 +27.150 +2.002 91.153 1:55.837 101.626 11 67 Dave Weitzenhof/M 14 30:09.560 +28.670 +1.520 91.076 1:57.239 100.410 12 70 Tom Fatur/M 14 30:10.148 +29.258 +0.588 91.047 1:57.179 100.462 13 8 Mark Defer/M 14 30:18.153 +37.263 +8.005 90.646 1:57.557 100.139 14 90 Robert Wright/M 14 30:22.105 +41.215 +3.952 90.449 1:57.609 100.094 15 57 Billy McLaughlin 14 30:22.402 +41.512 +0.297 90.434 1:57.669 100.043 16 28 Ardie Greenamyer/M 14 30:23.006 +42.116 +0.604 90.405 1:57.659 100.052 17 7 Brent Gilkes/M 14 30:25.583 +44.693 +2.577 90.277 1:57.260 100.392 18 27 Craig Clawson/M 14 30:31.066 +50.176 +5.483 90.007 1:58.185 99.607 19 83 Chris Keller 14 30:34.523 +53.633 +3.457 89.837 1:57.743 99.980 20 25 Jeff McCusker/M 14 30:36.395 +55.505 +1.872 89.745 1:58.530 99.317 21 37 Chris Livengood 14 30:38.899 +58.009 +2.504 89.623 1:57.211 100.434 22 69 Paul Farmer/M 14 30:51.297 +1:10.407 +12.398 89.023 1:59.441 98.559 23 03 Tim Walsh 14 30:51.554 +1:10.664 +0.257 89.011 1:58.762 99.123 24 42 Bill Jordan/M 14 30:57.687 +1:16.797 +6.133 88.717 1:59.557 98.463 25 95 Al Giubord, Jr. 13 28:13.291 1 Lap 1 Lap 90.378 1:56.823 100.768 26 11 Jesse Yorio 13 28:14.523 +1.232 +1.232 90.312 1:57.440 100.238 27 06 Tim Paul 10 23:07.842 4 Laps 3 Laps 84.822 1:59.112 98.831 28 94 Al Guibord,Sr./M 7 16:57.228 7 Laps 3 Laps 81.008 2:01.355 97.005 DNF 33 Len Amato/M 2 6:41.974 12 Laps 5 Laps 58.571 2:14.177 87.735 DNF 3 Phil Lombardi/M 1 4:25.009 13 Laps 1 Lap 44.421 4:10.444 47.005 DNF 88 Tim Minor/M 1 4:25.380 +0.371 +0.371 44.359 4:09.554 47.172 DNF 97 Chris Gumprecht 1 4:26.209 +1.200 +0.829 44.221 4:03.573 48.330 DNS 16 Peter Gonzalez/M 0 -.--- - - - -.--- -