May 24 & 25, 1998 - Seattle International Raceway - Rounds Four and Five

Lacy & Miller Split Seattle Double-Header

Sudden downpours mixed with clearing skies played havoc with the Northwest Region's double National slate, forcing Star Mazda officials to conduct both of the series races on Monday, after Sunday's efforts were washed out amid rain and confusion.

Despite the turmoil, both races were full of drama and excitement with Star Mazda Series points leader Ian Lacy splitting the wins at Seattle with Miller, thus retaining a one-point handle on the championship. An attempt to run the first Star Mazda race of the weekend was made on Sunday, as scheduled. But, that plan was scraped when it started to rain and drivers dashed into the pits to change tires. That chaos coupled with a four-car tangle on the track, forced race officials to red-flag the race. The ensuing confusion left region officials with just one option-scrape the race all together and run both events on Monday.

So, on Monday, another impressive contingent of 35 Formula Mazdas took to the track in the morning to contest the first race. Polesitter Lacy and fourth-fast qualifier Miller, battled back and forth until the mid-point of the 22-lap race when the pair bumped in Turn Two.

"I'll admit I didn't let him have that turn very easily," Miller said. There was contact between Lacy and Miller, which resulted in Lacy spinning. Miller's car was also slightly damaged, but he held onto the lead, which he defended from Jeff Bucknum at the checker.

So, one race down, one to go. By Monday afternoon, it looked like it was going to be a dry race ... until the grid started to form and the rain began to fall. As crews debated whether to change to rain set-ups, most drivers opted to stay on slicks. The race started, but the skies were ominous. On lap four, the pace car was dispatched when the drizzle turned into a downpour. But, just as fast as rain tires were mounted, it dried out again. Polesitter Lacy started on rains, pitted for slicks and then spent the rest of the race chasing down leader Kevin Jenkins, who had made the decision to stay on slicks. On the last lap, Lacy made the pass for the win.

Other Star Mazda drivers turned in impressive drives, including Nick Steele who came back from a disappointing 10th-place finish in the first race to place third, behind Jenkins, in the second round. Bucknum couldn't replicate his second-place finish in the first race, and ran 18th in the second race.


Top 10 Points Standings (After 5 of 13 rounds):

1. Lacy, 127; 2. Miller, 126; 3. Hall II, 104; 4. Muniz, 97; 5. Bucknum, 92; 6. Jenkins, 89; 7. Hand, 88; 8. Steele, 85; 9. Senske, 81; 10. Potekhen, 75.

Top 5 Master Series Point Standings (After 5 of 13 rounds):

1. Hatle, 72; 2. McCormick, 60; 3. Dick Downs, 52; 4. Hill, 49; 5. Weyland, 45.

Finishing Order Round 4
1st Mike Miller
2nd Jeff Bucknum
3rd Daniel Muniz
4th Brandon Peterson
5th Joey Hand
6th Jim Hall II
7th Dave Gaylord
8th Frank McCormick
9th Bob Hatle
10th Nick Steele
11th Sarah Senske
12th Jason Storace
13th Scott Fuller
14th Fernando Toscano
15th Brad Drew
16th Alan Benson
17th Norm Hernandez
18th John Warren
19th Will Hill
20th Glen Brown
21st Dan Weyland
22nd Tom Mabey
23rd Eugene Boyer
24th Frank Nieto
25th Smokey Basler
26th Ethan Hernandez
27th Ginni Swanton
28th Kevin Jenkins
29th Debbi Girdler
30th Jennifer Tumminelli
31st Jamie Tindall
32nd Brian Snyder
33rd Ian Lacy
34th Bruno Lambert
35th Michael Potekhen
36th Chuck Helm
Time of Race: 30m40.547s
Race Average Speed: 98.819mph
Lap Leaders: Miller 1, 3-20; Bucknum 2
Fastest  Lap: Lacy, 1:22.837 (97.783mph)
Margin of Victory: 0.663sec.
Finishing Order Round 5
1st Ian Lacy
2nd Kevin Jenkins
3rd Nick Steele
4th Brian Snyder
5th Joey Hand
6th Jim Hall II
7th Daniel Muniz
8th Michael Potekhen
9th Jason Storace
10th Brandon Peterson
11th Frank McCormick
12th Bob Hatle
13th Scott Fullmer
14th Dave Gaylord
15th Fernando Toscano
16th Glenn Brown
17th Norm Hernandez
18th Jeff Bucknum
19th Tom Mabey
20th Will Hill
21st Frank Nieto
22nd Jennifer Tumminelli
23rd Dan Weyland
24th Ginni Swanton
25th Bruno Lambert
26th Eugene Boyer
27th Debbi Girdler
28th Jamie Tindall
29th Brad Drew
30th Smokey Basler
31st Ethan Hernandez
32nd Sarah Senske
33rd Mike Miller
34th Alan Benson
35th John Warren
Time of Race: 45m58.647s
Race Average Speed: 64.596mph
Lap Leaders: Jenkins 1-21; Lacy 22
Fastest  Lap: Lacy, 1:22.619 (95.862mph)
Margin of Victory: 2.899sec