American Le Mans Series at Road America
Road America / Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin
August 21 - 23, 2003



Official Results
Friday, March 14th Race Final Results
Pos Car Class Driver Laps Gap Best Lap
1 11 FM Mike McDowell 16 0.000 2:10.886
2 26 FM Mike Potekhen 16 7.279 2:10.757
3 76 FM Moses Smith 16 12.228 2:11.608
4 31 FM John Olsen 16 14.159 2:11.247
5 42 FM Mike Andersen 16 14.373 2:10.486
6 29 FM Alan Rudolph 16 17.518 2:11.656
7 27 FM James Goughary 16 24.373 2:11.881
8 43 FM Glenn Cooper 16 24.936 2:11.755
9 22 FM R Justice 16 41.220 2:12.957
10 28 FM Pierre Ehret 16 46.398 2:13.213
11 47 FM Michael Stephens 16 55.106 2:13.161
12 23 FM Tom Nastasi 16 55.145 2:12.237
13 44 FM John Faulkner 16 58.843 2:12.510
14 46 FM Luis Schiavo 16 1:07.173 2:14.255
15 5 FM Scott Kusy 16 1:11.613 2:14.664
16 17 FM Dick Downs 16 1:16.179 2:14.924
17 56 FM Dan Tomlin III 16 1:19.805 2:14.595
18 65 FM Richard Matthews 16 1:20.395 2:14.900
19 13 FM Jack Willes 16 1:22.286 2:15.076
20 32 FM Steve Cook 16 1:37.200 2:15.912
21 33 FM Rick Waddell 16 1:45.687 2:15.913
22 24 FM John Brownson 16 1:47.409 2:13.581
23 88 FM Dan Weyland 16 1:58.556 2:16.670
24 55 FM Anthony Downs 16 2:29.025 2:15.107
25 58 FM Dan Tomlin, Jr. 15 1 Lap 2:16.302
26 72 FM Ginni Swanton 13 3 Laps 2:19.486
27 34 FM Jamie Bach 10 6 Laps 2:11.407
28 40 FM John Intile 10 20.177 2:13.961
29 77 FM Brian Thienes 3 13 Laps 2:22.124
30 60 FM Grant Lockwood 1 15 Laps 2:28.838
31 93 FM Ian Henderson 0 16 Laps 4:25.467
32 39 FM Donnie Isley 0 2.077 3:49.199














































Event Headlines

Rookie McDowell Goes Flag to Flag for Victory in Season Opener

Sebring, Florida – Michael McDowell ran two STAR MAZDA SERIES events last season and showed well in both outings, scoring a podium finish in his debut at the Sears Point round. As the 2003 season got under way this weekend during the Mobil 1 – 12 Hours of Sebring, however, McDowell showed that it was no fluke. McDowell broke the track record (2:09.10, set in 2002 by Scott Speed), during qualifying, with a lap of 2:08.80. And, once the green flag dropped, McDowell did not look back…leading all 16 laps for a 7.2 second victory.

While McDowell (Valley Motor Center, MMI Kart Team, Western Titanium, Mega Metals) was at the top of the time charts for most of the week, during qualifying he was challenged by fellow rookie and 2002 SCCA Formula Mazda National Champion, Jamie Bach (B-K Motorsports, MAZDASPEED, DELL). Bach and McDowell traded the top qualifying spot four times during the session-both turning laps under the track record-with McDowell sealing the pole position, by just .15 seconds over Bach, on his final tour. On the other end of the grid were pre-season favorites, Mike Anderson (DARE, HASA Pool Products) and Luis Schiavo (Racer’sEdge, Rotelli, Telecaribe)…both were fast all week as well, but qualifying setbacks put them at the back of the 33 car field.

At the drop of the green, McDowell took the point with the rest of the field in tow. Unfortunately, before lap one was complete, a couple of separate incidents slowed the field in a full course yellow. The worst of the incidents saw Ian Henderson make heavy contact with the tire barrier entering the hairpin under heavy braking. Fortunately, Henderson was okay, but his (Formula World Racing, Henderson Engineering, INGEAR) Formula Mazda could not continue.

After a couple laps under a full course caution, the field went back to racing with McDowell still at the point and Mike Potekhen (EUROSPORT, Blue Valley Ski Rentals, Twin Seasons, Visa/MasterCard) and Jamie Bach fighting it out for second. Potekhen, making his return to the series after three years, was fast all week and got by Bach on the start.  Potekhen led Bach for the first ten tours, before a lower control arm broke on Bach’s machine, putting him out of the race.  Potekhen ended up the runner-up to McDowell, seven seconds behind.  “It is great to be back in a STAR MAZDA,” said Potekhen on the podium, “It was great racing with Jamie (Bach) and I was sorry to see that he had trouble.  Our years of experience paid off.  I want to thank the EUROSPORT crew for all they did to make this a great weekend.”

Terrific battles in the top ten were solid throughout the race.  John Olsen (TEAM BUCKNAM, Piloti Land Group, DVS Shoe Company, RotaryRockets.) and Moses Smith (TEAM TOMLIN, HASA POOL PRODUCTS) had an intense battle going throughout the middle stages of the race, with each of the duo taking looks down the inside and on the outside at nearly every turn.  Ultimately, it was Smith who secured the final podium spot by holding off Olsen.  “It is terrific to be back in the car after coming so close to the championship last year,” commented Smith, “I would like to thank Team Tomlin and the folks at HASA Pool Products.  It was a great race and I very much look forward to seeing everyone at Laguna Seca.”

Besides McDowell’s dominance up front, the show to watch was Mike Anderson making his way through the field.  Anderson came through the field with a vengeance, making it to eleventh position by lap eight, ninth on lap nine, sixth on lap eleven, and fifth by lap thirteen…as he got past Alan Rudolph (TEAM BUCKNAM, RBI Diamond Tools).  He was thrilled as he came down pit lane after the event after a great drive from the back of the pack.  In addition, Anderson’s “back of the pack partner,” Luis Schiavo, ended his race in fourteenth place after his long trip up through the pack.

Ultimately, it was McDowell’s day and he was very pleased as he climbed up on the top of the podium, “I have to thank the  Star race Cars team. They gave me a great car and I did the easy part. They deserve the credit. I also have to thank my sponsors MMI Kart Team, Western Titanium, and Mega Metals. Without their support, I would not be here.”

The next round of the STAR MAZDA SERIES North American Championship will be held at MAZDA Raceway Laguna Seca on June 14-15, 2003 with The Bridgestone presents the CHAMP CAR Series presented by FORD.  Series officials also announced at the conclusion of the Sebring race that the STAR MAZDA SERIES will be running at Road Atlanta June 27-29 with the American LeMans Series.  This is an event location change from the RFK Stadium event originally on the schedule.

For more information on the Star Mazda Series please contact Gary Rodrigues at (818) 686-3350.


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