August 27, 2001


To All Star FM Racers:


Mosport was another weekend of terrific Star Mazda Series racing. We now have had five different winners out of five North American Championship races. The talent pool is obviously deep in the 2001 competition, and the parity of the teams was demonstrated especially well at Portland where four different teams shared the front two rows after qualifying. Fourth fastest at that track was 0.04 seconds off pole and the front row had identical times down to the 0.001 of a second! I do not think it could be any better.


The recognition that the Series does help develop and showcase talent has received another boost with last year’s “Rookie of the Year” Jason La Point landing the seat in Lynx Racing’s Toyota Atlantic. He joins Joey Hand at DSTP and Grant Ryley at Worldspeed as recent graduates from Star Mazda who have joined top Pro Atlantic teams.


Please return the enclosed entries ASAP if you plan to run the Petit Le Mans and/or the Mazda Raceway CART events. Paddock space will be at a premium and we may need to consolidate some one or two-car rigs into some multi-car setups. We do not want to turn anyone away, so get your entry in early and help us help you.


The Charlotte event was cancelled officially while we were on our way to Mosport. At this point, it is too late to book another 2001 date and get it on Speedvision. Therefore, the CART weekend at Mazda Raceway will be the season finale for both the North American Championship and the West Series. We expect to have all the banquet details worked out in time for the next bulletin. Plan for Sunday night.


At the ALMS weekend in September, we have again secured the third floor of the start/finish tower for Star Mazda guests and VIPs. If you want to treat sponsors, loved ones, or yourself to great food and a commanding view of Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca, contact our office (818-909-5355, Norma). Cost is $300/person and includes three-day passes, lunches Saturday and Sunday, cold drinks all day both days, closed circuit TV, and preferred parking in the tower area.


After the September race we will be moving into our new facilities:


Star Race Cars

10639 Glenoaks Boulevard

Pacoima CA 91331-1613

(818) 686-3350


The building and everything in it will be brand new, so please bear with us while everything gets sorted out.


There are two proposals now being discussed at SCCA that are very important to FM. First is the proposed abandonment of the FM tire rules. Second is the addition of a second FM engine builder, more “convenient” to the East Coast. We think both ideas would be mistakes for the class. Simply put, the tire rule lowers the cost of racing an FM and lets more drivers compete on an equal footing. The second engine builder is not necessary since motor rebuilds are far less frequent in FM than in other classes and exchange motors are usually available at the track through Star FM dealers. That is about as convenient as can be. In addition, the prospect of competition between engine builders will inevitably lead to loss of parity and higher prices. Let SCCA know how you feel, or expect to live with the consequences.


After the penalties were announced following the Portland race, there has been a lot of constructive discussion about rules for starts and restarts in particular. We are drafting some thoughts for discussion and possible implementation this year so that clarity can be achieved and fairness maintained. We also hope sportsmanship will not be lost in the process of highly competitive racing.


See you at the races!


Gary E. Rodrigues