Day 3 News show coverage from the 2011 NASA Championships coverage brought to you by Honda Racing HPD.

NASA National Championships presented by Toyo Tires Takes Checkered Flag Crowning Sunday Champions at Mid-Ohio

LEXINGTON, OH, (Sept. 11, 2011) – The National Auto Sport Association (NASA) Annual National Championships presented by Toyo Tires is in the record books with Sunday’s Champions crowned at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

In the first race of the day, under sunny skies and perfect 70-degree temperatures, Honda Challenge 1 and 2 comprised of 34 racers kicked-off the running with one of the most competitive races of the weekend.

Honda Challenge 1

In Honda Challenge 1, Kevin Helms, North Carolina, was on the pole for the standing start in his No. 5/Honda Civic. Jonathan Meris, California, No. 727/Honda Civic took over the lead into Turn One on the first lap. Meris and Helms were locked in a two-car battle in the early going, exchanging some contact and swapping the lead seven times during the race. By lap 18, John Schmitt, Ohio, No. 13/Honda Prelude and Luke Wilwert, Ohio, No. 25/Acura caught Meris and Helms, making it a four-car battle for the Honda Challenge 1 win. At the checker, it was Meris, Helms and Schmitt.

“This was a tough,” Meris said. “Hats off to Kevin Helms and his Honda Works team, he drove a clean race. I have never had a race like that ever. We drove a clean race. I was having trouble with my standing starts. I knew to compete with Kevin that I would have to be on him at the start. I just stuck behind him and waited to make a clean pass. We respect each on the track and had a great race. I want to thank Honda Performance Development (HPD). If it wasn’t for them, we couldn’t race like we do. I would also like to thank K-Tune, SPC Performance, and all of my crew who give up here time to come out here and help.”

“It was mano-a-mano for sure,” Helms said. “You have two real good drivers, with two really good prepped cars. B-Series compared to the K-Series engines, we were a little down on power, but it’s OK. That is what is great about Honda Challenge. You can have different engines and different chassis and put them all together and run one group and be competitive.”

“It was very difficult,” Schmitt said. “At the start I lost couple of spots. I couldn’t really do much with the top two cars, they have a lot of horsepower and little better braking and handling. The Hoosiers Tires and Hawk pads help up the whole race. I want to thank my wife for putting with all of the racing stuff.”

Honda Challenge 2

Jeremy Croiset, California, started his No. 25/Honda CRX from the pole and consistently gapped second place runner No. 10 Erik Olson, Pennsylvania, in his Honda Civic. The battle for third was between Colin Botha, Michigan, No. 126/Honda CRX and Manny Coats, California, No. 72/Honda CRX in the early going. On lap seven Croiset experienced car trouble, retiring after amassing an eight-second lead in the first seven laps, giving the top-spot over to Coats who charged from third. Coats holds on for the win by three-seconds, with Botha second and Olson third.

“It was a very hard race,” Coats said. “I started fifth and it was really difficult to get by cars at the beginning. I saw Jeremy (Croiset) checkout. He is my teammate, and he also works and sets my car up. I don’t know what happened, Jeremy ended up breaking, and it became a three-way battle with me, Erik and Colin. We were going back and forth, and then I think Colin’s tires were going, and I was able to get by him. I want to thank my wife, Hoosier Tires, HPD, Sampson Racing Radios and Jeremy Croiset.”

“I got good start,” Botha said. “Manny Coats was behind me, and he worked me over for a few laps and went by. I got by Erik and then I didn’t have anything for Manny. I would get close in traffic, but couldn’t catch him. I want to thank HPD for helping us out. Myer Motorsports helped me rebuild my transmission last night as well as Hawk Brakes and Hoosier Tires.”

“It went really well,” Olson said. “I got a really good start, jumped out into second place. Unfortunately, Jeremy’s car died. I then took the lead, and I started to have a couple of issues. Manny and Colin are quick, and they caught me, my wheel bearing the back went and I was skating through the corners. I just didn’t have the speed to hold them off. It is fantastic being on the podium. I want to thank Kevin Helms at Honda Works, HPD, CarboTech Brakes, and all of the Honda Challenge competitors.”

GTS4

In GTS, the race started under wet conditions with precipitation falling from Turn Seven to the Carrousel. The rain caught many competitors out as they were spinning off of the track in the changing conditions.

Randy Mueller, Florida, No.0/BMW M3, winner, “it was a tough weekend. The weather has been the worst part. It was raining, dry and then rain again. It was raining right before we went out, and we didn’t know what to do. We ended up with a dry setup, softened a little. At the beginning, I couldn’t hang with the first place cars. As it started to dry I was able to start turning fast laps, and I was able to reel them in. I want to thank Bimmer World, Epic Motorsports, my sister, and Barry Elton.”

Jay Matus, Texas, No. 171/Porsche 996, second, “the race was absolutely great. I had a great time. It was great driving with everyone and real good sportsmanship out here. I had a good running car. I led the race a lot of the time. I got a little fender-bender, but that is part of racing. I want to thank Viking and Hoosier Tires.”

Mark Klenin, Colorado, No. 62/BMW M3, third, “I had a great time racing today. I want to thank my coach Mark Rothman, who has helped me, since I started last year. I am very happy.”

GTS3

Josh Smith, Pennsylvania, No. 148/BMW M3, winner, “I made a mistake in Friday’s qualifying race, which put me deep in the field at the start today. I had a lot of work to do. The conditions favored my car set-up and I made my way through the pack to first place. I want to thank the crew at Bimmer World and Epic Motorsports and my wife for being supportive.”

Korey Deason, Ohio, No. 57/BMW M3, second, “I won the pole on Friday, was fifth on Thursday. I got caught up in lap traffic and was able to get up to second. I want to thank Yardmaster.com, Tom Haden Automotive, OS Giken, and Hoosier Tires.”

Scott Berkowitz, Indiana, No. 88/BMW M3, third, “I am really happy. I was running second and then had a few incidents with some slower cars. I got spun on the front stretch. I was able to make it back to third. After the week I’ve had I am happy with third. The left side of my car is punched in. The back side is crunched in by other drivers. I spent hours and hours putting it back together with zip-ties and Duct tape. I had a lot of help from my friends. I would like to thank Engles Inc., Tom Haden Automotive, Elephant Motorsports, Auto Body Specialists, and Zionsville Autosports.”

GTS1

Ed Baus, Ohio, No. 112/Porsche 944, winner, “I feel great. It was a great weekend. I had a lot of excitement at the beginning, on and off the track. I want to thank Hoosier Tires and Hawk Brakes.”

Brant Giere, Ohio, No. 56/Porsche 944, second, “we had dry track from Turn Seven to the Carrousel. The track conditions changed things early on. We had some attrition in our class. We lost some competitive cars early. It was a tough race. I want to thank my family and everyone who came down with me.”

Paul Milligan, Michigan, No. 319/BMW 318, third, “it was varying track conditions. Every other corner was wet. There was a huge melee in the Carrousel on the first lap. I swapped into second place with Brant and ended up third. I want to thank Hoosier Tires.”

GTS5

Daniel Wennerberg, No. 68/BMW, winner, “I signed up yesterday. I went out on full rains, made the wrong call, but we got it done anyway. I was going super slow, but I was doing clean laps, and it paid off.”

Ted Barrett, California, No. 283/Porsche 997, second, “it was a tough race. We started out on wets, had to go to dry’s and back to wets. It was fun and exciting. I was racing against my son and beat him.”

GTS2

Scott Good, Ohio, No. 333/Porsche 944, winner, “I made a low percentage move in the Carrousel and spun off the track, and then I had to go and pass everybody. It worked out. I did it the hard way. I want to thank Hoosier Tires and IFC Racing.”

Mike Ward, Ohio, No. 168/Porsche 968, second, “it was a great race. We didn’t know if we should go out on dry or wets. Half the track was dry and half was wet. I feel fortunate that I was able to avoid the early incidents and end up second. I want to thank Mike Ward Landscaping, Porsche and my wife at home.”

“Brad Waite, Ohio, No. 73/Porsche 944, third, “we have a great group of racers in GTS. Halfway through the race I got punted off in the Keyhole. It took me about a lap to get out of the sand. I fought back and ended up in third. I want to thank Hoosier tire.”

American Iron

Dean Martin, Michigan, No. 50/Ford Mustang, winner (two-time on the weekend, also in Super Touring 2). “It was a great weekend. I want to thank all of our service members today on 9-11. Chris (Cobetto) and I went back and forth all race. I had some issues this weekend and had to start at the back of the pack, but I was able to get up to him. I knew the car was going to be good. I ran him down, and he made it hard on me. We had a little incidental contact. I stayed behind him for four or five laps, made him use up his Hoosiers. I caught a gap in traffic and went by him. I want to thank Ford Racing and Rehagan Racing.”

Chris Cobetto, Virginia, No. 5/Ford Mustang, second, “I started on the pole. I pretty much checked out early. At that point I was focusing on being smooth and conserving tires. Later, I looked in my mirror and saw Dean coming hard. I knew I had to play some defense. Dean drove great. This is the first year with the car. I wore the tires out. Dean is a stellar driver. I am very happy. All these guys are great to run with. I want to thank Performance Auto Sport, Saleen Speed Lab, Bully Dog, Exedy, and Rockland Transmission.”

Chris Golinello, Florida, No. 55/Ford Mustang, third, “it was a great race, a lot of action, and a lot of fun. I want to thank my family at home, Rehagan Racing and Ford Racing.”

American Iron Xtreme

Chris Griswold, Wisconsin, No. 71/Ford Mustang, winner, “it went really good out there. The slower traffic was really heads-up and made it a good race. Everyone was on jack stands 20-minutes before the race wondering if was going to rain. The weather was a question mark all weekend. I want to thank Hoosier Tire and Paul’s Automotive.”

Paul Faessler, Ohio, No. 1/Ford Mustang, second, “I qualified ninth, so I was at the back of the pack. I made my way up to fourth place by the First Turn. I was in second by the end of the first lap. I tried to reel in Chris, but he got through traffic better than I did. I wanted more, but I am happy with second. I want to thank my wife Maria, son Brian, and Hoosier Tires.”

Jake Parrott, Maine, No. 29/Chevrolet, third, “it was a long race, but we made it through. We were prepared for a dry track and way under prepared for a wet one. When that rain came in an hour before the race we were a little nervous. We didn’t know if we should go out with our wet set-up. The sun came out, and it was a great race. I want to thank JakesRodShop.com and Baer Brakes.”

STR2

Scott Hermann, California, No. 3/Chevrolet/Super Truck, second place, “it was pretty tight at the beginning. We got straightened out after that. Everyone in our class battled the whole 45 minutes. It came down to the last lap, and I was a half of car length behind and didn’t get it done today. I want to thank my wife and Edelbrock for their support.”

John Brownlow, Michigan, No. 557/Chevrolet Corvette, third place, “it was a great race. We got lucky with the weather. We all thought it was going to rain. It didn’t happen. It started kind of tough on Thursday. We hit the wall in practice. I was able to get it back together with my crew. It is nice to see the guys from California. I want to thank my family for letting me do this all summer.”

STR1

Troy Lindstrom, California, No. 66/Chevrolet Super, winner, “we had the Jagermeister truck running well. I think this is the first National Championship in a truck. I want to thank my wife, Indy Automotive, Goodyear Tires and everyone at Mid-Ohio.”

Ed Charnock, California, No. 83/Chevrolet Super Truck, second, “it turned out well. It was tough getting here. We had a lot of mechanicals. Everyone in NASA pulls together. I had about 40-minutes of run time, but made it to the final race and the podium. I want to thank Liniman Racing, and TC Motorsports.”

TC McNett, California, No. 33/Factory Five Racing Cobra, third, “I am running a little slower car. We kept it running and on the track and made it up to third. We came out from southern California. I hit the wall on Thursday and had to put the car back together.”

PTC

Sarah Cattaneo, Arizona, No. 11/Mini Cooper, winner, “I started from the pole and led the whole race. I can’t complain about that. I want to thank Eurohaus Motorsports, RSR Motorsports and Robert Owen helping me to get as fast as possible.”

Manny Coats, California, No. 72/Honda CRX, second, “it could have gone better. At the end my car was spewing fuel, so I had to limp it the last 10-minutes. I want to thank my wife, Jeremy Croiset and Felix for setting my car up perfectly.”

Colin Botha, Michigan, No. 126/Honda, third, “the race went reasonably well. I started out in third place and stayed there behind Manny (Coats) most of the way. Then I hit some debris at the end of the straight, and I bounced it off of the wall. I was able to keep it together for third. I was also second in Honda Challenge 2. I am extremely pleased. I want to thank my wife Jessica, HPD, Myers Motorsports and Hoosier.”

PTE

Brian Makse, Canada, No. 786, winner, “this has been the culmination of four years of work for us at Pakistan Express. We got the dry weather. We ran an almost flawless race. I want to thank Myers Motorsports, Hawk Brakes, Hoosier Tires. My father passed away two weeks ago, so this is for him.”

Todd Reed, Maryland, No. 1/Ford Probe, second, “it was 40-minutes of flat-out racing the whole time. I ran the race 110% the whole time. I went from third to fourth and then moved up to be second. One of the best races of my life. The Ford Probe gave me everything it had. I want to thank Hoosier and Reed Speed for the brake kit.”

Kyle Webb, Ohio, No. 99/Mazda Miata, third, “it was nice to finally have a dry track. The race didn’t go as well as I wanted, but I did end up on the podium. I want to thank Mazda, NASA and all of the corner workers who worked the stations in poor conditions.”

PTF

Walter Carlos, California, No. 881/Mazda RX7, winner, “this was the culmination of a year of effort. I want to thank Hoosier and Mobius Motorsports.”

Ed Cangialosi, New York, No. 41/Mazda Protégé, second, “it was tough. I lost fourth gear on the second lap, so I dropped from first to last and had to battle back to second. I want to thank the northeast NASA region and my family.”

PTD

Brian Shanfeld, Ohio, No. 64/Honda Civic, winner, “it went pretty well. I had to start at the back of the grid because I didn’t get to run any of the qualifying races. I had to work my way through the field being patient. I want to thank Honda Performance Development, Honda R&D and BFGoodrich tires.”

Ben Anderson, Minnesota, No. 38/Mazda RX7, second, “it was an amazing race. We were down on power this weekend. The Mazda brakes and turns in well. I am happy with a second place today. The race came to us. I want to thank Chad Martin, and Andy DeConi, crew chief.”

Ron Dodson, Pennsylvania, No. 272/Acura Integra, third, “the race was a bit of a struggle. I hit the wall head-on coming into the Carrousel in the early laps. I was able to make up some positions. I went off in Turn One and was able to reel in some guys and finish in third place. I want to thank NASA, my family and Hoosier tires.”

NASA Nationals Championships presented by Toyo Tires 2011 Champions:

FFR Paul Kaiser/No. 8/Factory Five Racing Cobra

CMC2 Anders Sjoblom/No. 65/Ford Mustang

PTA Scott Perkins/No. 127/Chevrolet Corvette Z06

PTB Derek Whitis/No. 125/Mazda MX5

Super Touring 1 David Pinitaric/No. 40/Dodge Viper

Super Touring 2 Dean Martin/No. 88 Ford Mustang

Super Unlimited Ryan Ellis/No. 01/Superlite Coupe

Spec 944 Tyler Palmer/No. 4/Porsche 944

Spec E30 Robert Grace/No. 74/BMW 325

Spec Miata Nathanial Sparks/No. 12/Mazda Miata

Formula Mazda Darryl Wills/No. 24/Formula Mazda

PTC Sarah Cattaneo/No. 111/Mini Cooper

PTD Brian Shanfeld/No. 64/Honda Civic

PTE Brain Makse/No. 786/Honda

PTF Walter Carlos/No. 881/Mazda RX7

Honda Challenge 1 Jonathan Meris/No. 727 Honda Civic

Honda Challenge 2 Manny Coats/No.72 Honda CRX

GTS1 Edward Baus/No. 112 Porsche 944

GTS2 Scott GoodNo. 333 Porsche 944

GTS3 Joshua Smith/No.148 BMW M3

GTS4 Randy Mueller/No. 0 BMW M3

GTS5 Daniel Wennerberg/No. 68 BMW

TTA Rory Alsberg/No. 53 Chevrolet Corvette

TTR Team Nobama/No. 31 Knoop-Mann Special Chevrolet

TTS James Forbis/No. 69 Chevrolet Corvette

TTU Jarod Hoops/No. 178 Mitsubishi Evo

TTB Benjamin Lesnak/No. 9 Chevrolet Corvette

TTC Dj Fitzpatrick/No186 BMW M3

TTD Bill Brees/No. 138 Mazda Protégé

TTE Brian Makse/No. 786

TTF Michael Weber/No. 777 Infiniti G20

To qualify for the NASA National Championships presented by Toyo Tires, NASA competitors must compete in and score points in five regional races around the country. The 2011 National Championship presented by Toyo Tires weekend will feature over 400 competitors racing for the NASA National Champion trophy in 33 racing classes and nine Time Trial divisions around the famed Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

NASA racers are competing for over $1,000,000 in prize packages that are offered by major automotive and motorsport companies this weekend.

For additional information, please contact NASA Championships Media Director, Kyle Chura at kyle@kcapr.com or (248) 821-0468. More detail can be found at www.nasaproracing.com or www.nasachampionships.com.

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