2003 Results - Star Mazda Series Red Line Oil Championship
May 24 - 25, 2003
John Olsen sweeps Rounds Seven and Eight at Seattle
25, 2003, Seattle, WA.
Fresh off of his podium finish at Nazareth Speedway, Team Bucknum driver
John Olsen swept to victory in both rounds of the Star Mazda Series Red
Line Oil Championship at Pacific Raceway.
was an excellent weekend for me and Team Bucknum, and relief to get my
first wins,” Olsen commented, adding,
“the past couple of weekends have been great. After the podium at
Nazareth and the victories here, we are going to work hard to keep that
momentum going at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.”
race weekend at Pacific Raceway, (Formerly Seattle International Raceway),
would be the end of a logistically challenging weekend for several teams
and drivers, including Olsen and the Team Bucknum crew, as they worked to
get their equipment back across the country and their cars converted from
oval to road course setups. “My car was perfect,” Olsen stated, “the
team did a very good job under the circumstances between the tight
schedule and preparing the car.”
Olsen would ultimately prevail in the first of the two rounds,
championship points leader Mike Anderson continued his streak of pole
positions at Red Line Oil Championship events he entered in his HASA Pool
Products Formula Mazda, capturing his fourth consecutive pole for
Saturday’s race, with Olsen alongside in second. At the start of the
race Olsen was able to jump into the lead and Anderson would fall back as
his car started to develop an oversteer condition around the 2.25 mile
Anderson was fading, Olsen was able to establish a healthy lead ahead of
non-championship entrant Melvin Kemper, Jr. and his Team Bucknum teammate,
Alan Rudolph, who had recovered from a difficult start to work his way
back up the field. Rudolph managed to work his way past Kemper but ran out
of laps before he could make a bid for Olsen’s spot. Anderson, despite
his handling woes was able to hold on to claim the points for third place.
their battle from the previous week at Portland International Raceway,
Kyle Kelley and Phil Fogg Jr fought back and forth with Kelley being able
to get thought he traffic to claim the fifth finishing sport overall.
“After the victory last weekend I was a little disappointed,” Kelley
commented. “The top group was able to get away from me in traffic, but
to finish in the top five against these superb drivers is still a good
the first of two races in the books the drivers and crews had just enough
time to recover and prepare to qualify for the race on Sunday, and for the
first time since Phoenix, Anderson would not be the pole sitter as Olsen
would continue on his hot streak and lead the field to the green flag for
Sunday’s 20-lap event.
the 21 cars entered in the event raced down into the first turn, Olsen was
able to maintain and lengthen his lead until a full course caution came
out for an incident involving Dave Gaylord, allowing the rest of the field
to close the gap. On the restart, Olsen would be held up by the slower
cars, from a different class of SCCA Competition, ahead of him, the result
of a split start format. Taking advantage, both Anderson and Kelley moved
past Olsen, with Rudolph joining the battle as well.
restart worried me,” Olsen commented. “I was stuck behind slower cars
and both Anderson and Kelley got around me. Once I was able to emerge from
the traffic I was able to get past Kelley in turn three and was able to
reclaim the lead from Anderson the next time around I turn two. From there
it was just a run to the finish thanks to the work of Team Bucknum. This
weekend’s results are for them and my sponsors Rotary Rockets, Derek
Daly Academy and my friend Ross and Don.”
losing the lead to Olsen, Anderson was able to use the lapped traffic to
establish a gap between himself and Rudolph and Kelley, who were locked in
battle for third place. “I had quite the battle with Kyle Kelley which
let Olsen and Anderson get away,” Rudolph lamented. “At the end I was
able to catch up to Anderson on the final lap but I needed one more lap to
get by him. Never having raced here before, and having missed the test
day, I’m happy to have scored a second and a third place finish and look
forward to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
have closed up at the top of the championship battle, for while Anderson
was able to extend his lead over Rudolph by one point with 297 to 261, by
virtue of his pole position run for Saturday’s race, Phil Fogg Jr with
258 points and Olsen with 244 have jumped back into the fray with three
races remaining in the championship.
Masters Championship competition for drivers aged 45 and older, Bob Negron
retains his lead over Phil Fogg Sr. by a slim ten point margin with 134
points to Fogg’s 124.
nine of the Star Mazda Series Red Line Oil Championship will be held in
conjunction with the Star Mazda Series North American Championship at
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca as part of the ChampCar weekend June 13-16.
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