August 6  - Mosport Raceway  (Round 3 Best Western Championship)

Racers Beat The Rain With Ryley Right On

Under threatening weather conditions, World Speed Motorsports' Grant Ryley drove a nearly flawless
race after being challenged twice by Team Bucknum Racing/S3's Bernardo Martinez. After two separate contacts with Ryley that bent first the left, then the right side of his front wing, Martinez fell from second to third after a late-race pass by Valley Motor Center's Jason LaPoint, who now takes over the Best Western Championship points lead.

Rain and wind moved into the Mosport area just as Star Mazda teams were packing up their trailers. For the race, the skies remained overcast, but the track was dry. It was an exciting 27-car field that consisted of
some of the fastest Star Mazda drivers in the country. Ryley, whose spirited drive at Sears Point two weeks earlier impressed all, picked up where he left off at the Sonoma track-headed toward the front. In Friday's
practice session, Ryley was third quick behind LaPoint and World Speed teammate Alex Figge. On Saturday, Ryley dipped to sixth quick, but came back Saturday afternoon to set fast time in qualifying.
"We not only worked hard on the car this weekend, but our winter testing program was intense and it's paying off," said the 24-year-old Ryley. "This weekend, every time I'd mention even the smallest thing, the
guys on the World Speed team would jump right in and figure it out. This win is for them."

With the Best Western Championship points chase tight, this stop at the scenic and historic Canadian road course was important, especially for championship leader Martinez, who was trying to protect a one-point
lead over LaPoint. The excitement started even before the green was waved when 15th-place qualifier Quad Boenker spun on the first pace lap while warming his tires. Per series rules, the Weatherford, Texas, driver had to start from the back of the pack, but turned the misfortune into a good run to get back to finish 14th. Into Turn One on the start, Ryley led Martinez, Chantz Wade--up from fifth place--and LaPoint. After just five laps, Ryley opened up a slight lead over Martinez as the lead pair started to open a gap back to Wade, LaPoint, Scott Bradley and Bryan Selby. Missing from the front pack was sixth-fast qualifier Figge, who'd been hit from behind on lap one in Turn Three. The World Speed driver was able to continue, but the car
became loose and he spun. 

Up front, the race for the lead remained intact with Ryley holding off Martinez' charges, but Wade and LaPoint were engaged in a great battle for third. On lap 12, LaPoint passed Wade as the pair raced down Mosport's long back straight. "Chantz was driving really well and I couldn't get by him in the areas where I was fast, so I had to wait for the straight," LaPoint explained. Unfortunately, less than five laps later, Wade's race was over when he went wide at Turn Two and into the tire barrier. "Here's the story," Wade said. "Loose, gray, crash." 

At almost the same time, Martinez was making a move on Ryley in Turn Eight. Ryley took the defensive line and turned in, but Martinez was too close and contact was made between Ryley's left-rear and Martinez'
right-front wing. "I should have tucked in behind him at that point," Martinez said. "It was totally my mistake. That was my best opportunity and I just wasn't patient enough."

That development gave Ryley a little more breathing room, but Martinez came back one more time with three laps remaining. As the pair entered Turn One, Martinez went inside and, again, Ryley took the line. This time contact was made with Martinez' left-front wing. "I knew he was there," said Ryley, who explained his car began to oversteer mid-way through the race. "But, I had the turn, and I wasn't about to just give it
to him." 

With both sides of the front wing bent, Martinez was not only loosing ground to Ryley, but coming under attack from LaPoint, who successfully moved into second under braking into Turn Five on the last lap. Martinez finished third, thanks to nearly a four-second cushion over fourth-place runner Bradley, who reported his car got faster toward the end of the race.  "I don't plan anymore," Ryley said. "Every time I have a plan, the race never starts that way. If the car is good enough, I just want to get out front and keep the intensity to the finish."

Selby, who is currently second behind Matt Beardsley in the West Division points, finished fifth and had a so-so weekend after posting second-fast time in Saturday's practice session. "I was trying to make a
run with those guys and just stay on the track," said the Troon Golf-sponsored driver.

Mike Potekhen, who is also sponsored by Troon Golf as well as Twin Seasons Vacations, came from 14th on the grid to post an impressive sixth-place finish. The 20-year-old driver actually gained the most positions on the first lap, passing five cars. In one of the best battles on track Potekhen, raced with seventh-placed Beardsley, who'd been challenged by an ill-sounding engine at the start of the race.  David Sterenberg moved into eighth on the penultimate lap after passing 17-year-old Scott Jenkins in Turn Eight. "We went side-by-side and I finally went to the inside," said Sterenberg. "That was probably the most
fun I've had racing."

Jenkins finished ninth, just ahead of Speedvision-sponsored Steve Lopez, who spun twice--the first time in Turn Three after getting bumped from behind. "With four laps to go, I never turned for Eight," Lopez said,
who still managed to claim 10th. "I lost it, caught it, then lost it again."

In the Best Western points championship, LaPoint moves into first over Martinez, 117 to 115, respectively. Ryley is third with 107 points to Bradley's 106. Rounding out the top five is Beardsley with 85 points.

The fourth round of the Star Mazda Series Best Western Championship will be held Sept. 3, on Texas Motor Speedway's new road course, in conjunction with another American LeMans event. Speedvision, featuring
commentators Derek Daly and Johnny O'Connell, is televising the entire eight-race Best Western Championship with 30-minute shows that will be broadcast during prime time viewing-on the East and West Coasts. The Mosport race will be shown Aug. 28, at 8 p.m. EDT, with a replay of the telecast Aug. 29, at 12 a.m. EDT. Please check your local listings to confirm the dates and airtimes.

MOSPORT INT'L RACEWAY (2.459-mile road course)
Driver (,Sponsors/Team). All drive Star Formla Mazdas with 13B Mazda rotary engines on Goodyear tires.

QUALIFYING: Grant Ryley (Cupertino Electric, Del Monaco Specialty Foods/World Speed Motorsports) 1:22.922; 2. Bernardo Martinez (3-Dimensional Services/Team Bucknum Racing, S3) 1:22.114; 3. Scott Bradley (Ploycom, Radvision/World Speed Motorsports) 1:22.292; 4. Jason LaPoint (Thrasher Skateboard Magazine, Trackmagic Karts/Valley Motor Center) 1;22.329; 5. Chantz Wade (Shames Construction, Advanced Micro Devises/World Speed Motorsports) 1:22.462; 6. Alex Figge (Zerowait, Bell Helmets, Seattime/World Speed Motorsports) 1:22.781; 7. Bryan Selby (Red Line Oil, A Graphics Solution/Team Bucknum Racing) 1:22.922; 8. Matt Beardsley (Alpine Bank, Land Title/Valley Motor Center) 1:22.941; 9. Scott Jenkins (A.G.G., PPTI Transport/Jenkins Racing) 1:23.463; 10. Steve Lopez (Speedvision,
Botti Seats/Valley Motor Center) 1:23.683; 11. David Sterenberg (Stockbridge Capital/Star Mountain Racing) 1:23.773; 12. Chris McMurry (Fairytale Brownies, Northern Trust Bank, Washburn Dev., McMurry Publishing & Advertising/Team Bucknum Racing) 1:23.862; 13. Justin Pestotnik (Performance Plumbing/Eurosport Racing) 1:24.039; 14. Mike Poetekhen (Troon Golf, Twin Seasons Vacations, Sports Car Ltd./Star Mountain Racing) 1:24.158; 15. Quad Boenker (Al Boenker Insurance, NEO Synthetic Oil/Al Boenker Racing) 1:24.640; 16. Chad Block (Minolta, Autosporttuning/Valley Motor Center) 1:24.724; 17. Dick Downs (Hormel Foods, Olymic Foods/Eurosport Racing) 18. Doug Peterson (3-Dimensional Services, Urgent Plastic Services/Formula Cars East) 1:25.616; 19. Scott Kusy (Troon Golf/Team Bucknum Racing) 1:25.961; 20. Michael Choquette (Erik Michael Racing/Choquette Racing) 1:26.361; 21. Dan Weyland (Western Eagle Racing/Eurosport Racing) 1:26.387; 22. Tom Mabey (Sahara Pro Planners & Builders, Larry H. Miller Automotive Group/Rocky Mountain Motorsports) 1:26.648; 23. Aaron Ogus (Lapcritic/Flat Out Racing) 1:27.991; 24. Steve Cook (EBI Medical, Ascension Orthopaedics/Al Boenker Racing) 1:28.212; 25. Tom Nastasi (Mac Tanks/Light Speed) 1:28.934; 26. Dick Doty (Sensonics Inc.,, Fast Cat) 1:29.637; 27. Ginni Swanton (Speedware/Team Bucknum Racing) 1:29.977. 

TIME OF RACE: 31m51.972s
FASTEST RACE LAP: Ryley, 1:22.330 (107.524mph)
LAP LEADERS: Ryley 1-22


Round 3 - Best Western Championship Official Results
Pos Driver Laps Laps Led Difference Fast Lap
1 Grant Ryley 22 1-22 ---  1:22.330
2 Jason LaPoint 22 2.381 1:22.522
3 Bernardo Martinez 22 3.288 1:22.337
4 Scott Bradley 22 7.045 1:22.408
5 Bryan Selby 22 14.016 1:22.964
6 Mike Potekhen 22 20.805 1:23.288
7 Matt Beardsley 22 21.943 1:23.459
8 David Sterenberg 22 29.477 1:23.702
9 Scott Jenkins 22 30.373 1:23.905
10 Steve Lopez 22 49.015 1:23.783
11 Chris McMurry 22 52.972 1:24.638
12 Chad Block 22 53.699 1:24.335
13 Alex Figge 22 1:08.300 1:23.013
14 Quad Boenker 22 1:15.172 1:24.642
15 Doug Petersen 22 1:21.360 1:25.205
16 Tom Mabey 21 -- 1 lap -- 1:25.993
17 Scott Kusy 21 0.520 1:26.512
18 Aaron Ogus 21 2.151 1:26.038
19 Michael Choquette 21 3.051 1:26.448
20 Justin Pestotnik 21 11.277 1:24.423
21 Ginni Swanton 21 23.459 1:25.678
22 Steve Cook 21 37.935 1:26.846
23 Dick Doty 21 43.138 1:27.691
24 Dick Downs 21 45.318 1:26.561
25 Dan Weyland 21 1:04.590 1:26.279
26 Tom Nastasi 21 1:14.469 1:26.017
27 Chantz Wade 16 -- 6 laps -- 1:22.598


Round 3 - Best Western Championship Points

(After 3 of 8 rounds):

1. LaPoint, 117; 2. Martinez, 115; 3. Ryley, 107; 4. Bradley, 106; 5. Beardsley, 85.