April 22, 2005

To all Star Mazda racers,

We are exhausting all the superlatives we know in describing the quality of the racing in the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear. Atlanta had everything. 43 entries, new track records, lots of side-by-side racing, and my favorite, no full course yellows. Some of you may have seen the full page ad showing the results, on page 45 of the 25 April Auto week. Eric's story is enclosed. Do not miss the 29 May coverage on SPEED. BTW - We hope you catch the Sebring show on 24 April. It is the first of our "new look" one hour shows.

45 drivers are now entered in the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear. 38 have scored Series points, securing starting slots for the Montreal race with F-1. Immediately after the Mid-Ohio event, we will notify all 50 drivers (our field size limit, per contract) of their starting positions for the Montreal race. Even the F-1 promoter says he can't wait to see 50 Pro Formula Mazda cars heading for turn one !

There was an intense discussion at the crew chief's meeting in Atlanta regarding battery operated equipment over the wall. IMSA has a rule which seems to prohibit their use. We have been advised by IMSA that a bulletin will be issued by them, clarifying that battery operated equipment may be used in the pits for Star Mazda events. Once it is published, we will note it's contents on the competitors page of our web site.

The oval kit for the 2005 race at Pikes Peak will be nearly the same as it was for Phoenix in 2004 (different mix in the gear stack, vacuum pumps permitted, oval compound tires). Those of you planning to test need to know of one or two new features, however. It will be permitted to use two different lengths of front suspension pushrods (asymmetrical), as long as each pushrod is a legal size front pushrod. There will be a new tail cone (p/n 030-559) available as an option, which requires the latest FTR rear bearing carrier (p/n 060-569) in order to mount it properly. They are undergoing crash testing in the next few days, and then will be released to those who want them. The tail cone is carbon fiber and will be about $2000. The bearing carrier is $824. This will bring the car to FIA standards for rear impact structures. We intend to make these mandatory for 2006.

The west series for standard and pro cars is in Phoenix 30 April and 1 May. We hope to see some old friends and some new faces at that event. We are advised that the west series race scheduled for 18 June at Buttonwillow has been scrubbed. We will try to find a suitable replacement and announce it ASAP. We have already added the Buttonwillow October date to the west schedule after the July date at Mazda Raceway was dropped by SCCA. We will do our best to keep you posted.

See you at the races!

Gary Rodrigues