View Full Version : The biggest race of the year!

Garry Lobaugh
03-11-2005, 11:09 PM
It is all happening! The biggest race of the year..... yep, real drivers, not a few drivers in many classes... this will be the biggest race for Stars ever and one of the very best events of the USA calander.It is tooo bad that some of the other companies had to send their Euro drivers to bump their American customers around rather than to support their customers. God forbid that the Euros don't win against the Americans!

As of tonight we can all be proud of Adam Johnson who returned to MRP/Birel and put himself to the top of the leader boards in the final session of practice. The Johnson Family out of Marshalltown, Iowa have been long time friends of MRP/Birel since Tim Lobaugh tuned for them 7 years ago at the IKF 4 cycle grands. Adam and Johnny celebrating their birthday tonight have some real bragging rights. Both are top five contenders in practice on two different brands of chassis. Yep, they split the brothers up to let them go duke it out.

What a nice thing to hear from Adam's sponsor: " Garry, we made the first practice and everything was perfect!" MRP does deliver! I'll just share with you that when Rob Howden completed his call on the ICA final practice round, there was a crowd around Adam's new M32 Birel with the SRA tuned TM package. It was like he had just won! But it was only practice. It was very exciting for the the team, but it is always a curse to be on top of the bubble on Friday night.

Speed, Boswell, Gomez and Finney are all top ten contenders in the 67 entry field of ICC. Each have their bragging rights tonight, even though Speed failed to make the final round of practice. Just a small problem that was not the fault of the driver or dad! (Speed tent) But we know what the internal numbers on the track are and all above guys have a shot. I would rather be in this position tonight( Conclusion of Friday practice) than to be like the local favorite and home town boy Chris Jackson. Nothing wrong with this kid out of the Berryhill camp as he proved his talents earlier this year at the South West Regions Cup event in Austin. But he is the local hot shoe and sometimes when the local guy climaxes too early, the rest of the out of town guys go to work on him! I will say this will be very exciting racing for all classes.

40 ICA
45 Jica
20 80 Jr
40 cadets
and Stars kept it all on schedule and no red flags.
The place is packed. The only draw back?? it was the wind.. But with temps going up to 80 on Sat and the winds laying down a bit, this could be near ideal racing weather. Keep the faith Yanks, Spring is only 7 days away and the fever will return and racing will begin soon up North.

Thanks to all of the MRP/Birel dealer network and customers for joining us under the tent. Let's just see how it all plays out. It is not over until the checkered flies, but the Birel troops are doing a really fine job.

Garry Lobaugh
03-12-2005, 08:07 PM
Saturday follow up to the Friday comments are below

:Today was education day and there was plenty of schooling going around.

Adam Johnson MRP/Birel/SRA TM had qualified at the top of the leader board for the first group of ICA drivers. But as it proved to be all day long, the second group ( random draw) always were able to post faster times. Hence the Italian Fore was able to take the final fast time in qualifying. This pushed Adam back to 3rd and in this case outside of the world champ for the first heat. Fore taught all of the Americans a lesson in the first turn as he drove straight and forced Johnson to the outside marbles and back to 14th. While Fore was doing his magic, it was Mike G. MRP/Birel/Haddock/Parilla who came to the rescue for MRp and put on as school on the World champ slipping inside the first turn and taking the lead for a few moments. Then Fore came safely charging back and mainained the expected lead and win for heat one with Mike G. coming on in flying colors to defend the American effort in ICA. Johnson would work his way back to 5th for that group and a 9th place start for Sunday's final.. Two groups of 22 vie for 32 starting positions and hence the 9th place position.

IN terms of ICC, it was Speed and Finey in the first group doing well but missing the offical track record of 42.67. Once again the 2nd group took the track an Boswell was missing. Half way through the qualifying round Speed was still on top, but then came Boswell on his first lap with a move within a tenth of Speed's fastest qualifying lap. Lap two Boz buried the record and posted the new track record and pulled off at the urging his jubilant Birel Motorsports tuners and MRP family.

Boz on SRA/TM and Speed on Swedetec/TM. Both have plenty of power!

The group of 67 top ICC drivers then ran one prefinal each with the odds racing each other and the evens ( Speed 2nd) Boz 1st and so on. That gave us two really top drivers in each session to defend the colors. Both did not disappoint but Bozwell had a near disaster as we discover after returning to the pits. All is repaired overnight and it will Speed outside pole and Boz Pole position.

Other Birel drivers did very well today... We had good Jica representation and excellent results in the Comer cadet. Winds remain an aggitation and thank god MRP is renting a tent this weekend. At the end of the race there is no worry about packing out a high flying sail cloth. The orders will be to load the trailer and make a dash for the border. Today's high was near 80 and Sunday is forecast in the higher 50's for a high. Ah, it is never over till the final checkered and the entire team will be home early tonight ready to resume their fine efforts and set up changes for the ever changing conditions. I must conclude that the dealers and customers who participated with us for the Austin Texas January Dealer training at the new Iron Rock Raceway site have found all of their effort paying off.
Sunday is another school day and lets see if the racing gods will still be shining on the Birel team efforts.