AMP Summer Series Round Six
It was a beautiful Saturday in Dawsonville Georgia as round six of the AMP Summer Series took place. Many familiar names competed on the two-mile circuit for points as only two more races remain in the Summer Series.
Spec Miata Race One
Michael Gannon (Legends) led the field to green while Jose Garcia and Raiden Nicol followed. Gannon led for the entire race as he had been separated from the field at the start. The top Spec Miata drivers started to battle, as they headed into turn one Nicol attempted an outside pass on Garcia but couldn’t complete it. Coming out of turn one Kyle Haney ran off the course after being passed for 4th by Keith Williamson. Haney fell back which allowed Bill Miller to inherit 5th. By turn six the top four were settled in. On lap two Garcia, Nicol, and Williamson remained bumper to bumper. Coming down the backstretch into lap three, Nicol went side by side with Garcia and completed the pass in turn one. With Nicol now in 1st, Garcia and Williamson chased him into turn six. Williamson on lap four attempted a crossover on Garcia but couldn’t complete it through turn four. No passes were made through lap five but Jon Brunot in 5th retired as he pulled off the track out of turn one. Garcia battled with Nicol through lap six but couldn’t complete any passes.
With ten minutes completed, Gannon held a 0.8 second lead on the trio that followed. On lap eight Williamson made a move on Garcia for 3rd but was unable to complete it coming out of turn six. A full course yellow was waved as the safety crew made their way to Brunot’s stranded Miata. The caution allowed the pack to regroup. After safely removing Brunot, the green flag was waved as Nicol led the Spec Miata’s into turn one with Gannon out front. Garcia and Nicol made contact at turn one and the latter came off worse with Garcia and Williamson taking the top two spots. In the final laps, Williamson attempted a pass on Garcia headed into turn one and through the esses but couldn’t complete it. Haney closed in on Nicol and made a tight race for 4th. Coming to the white flag there was a 0.2-second difference between Garcia and Williamson. No passes were made through the last lap. Gannon took the checkered flag as Garcia and Williamson rounded out the podium.
Downforce Race One:
Raiden Nicol and Kevin Clifford took the green flag as John Pearson and William Karrh followed. Karrh was able to pass Pearson heading into turn one and took the 3rd spot. Clifford looked to the inside of Nicol headed into turn three and was able to inherit 1st. The field started to spread out as they headed into lap two. Zack Ping challenged Karrh and Pearson coming out of turn six. Ping was able to complete the pass on the backside of the track and inherited 3rd. Pearson reclaimed 3rd after Ping stopped on the track out of turn one of lap three. Clifford led Nicol by 2.7 seconds in the opening stages of the race. No passes were made through lap five. As the leaders raced into lap six there was a 6.5-second difference between the top two and 3rd. At turn one, Nicol passed Clifford for 1st under braking and created a 1.4-second gap. On lap nine, Michael Gatto passed Pearson for 3rd through turns twelve and thirteen. The top five spaced out as five minutes remained. As the clock wound down Nicol created a two-second gap on Clifford. As the field took the white flag Nicol held his lead while Gatto inherited 2nd as Clifford pulled off into the paddock early. Nicol took the checkered flag as Gatto and Pearson followed.
Spec Miata Race two
Keith Williamson and Raiden Nicol led the field to green as Jose Garcia missed the grid. Just behind the leaders, Kyle Haney and Blakely Fabiani were ready to capitalize on their mistakes. The first and second rows went side by side as they headed into turn one. Nicol took 1st as he raced Williamson up the hill through the esses. Coming to lap two Jose Garcia inherited 4th over Fabiani on the backside of the track. Nicol held a one-second lead over Williamson two minutes into the race. Bill Miller passed Garcia and Fabiani through turn six and inherited 4th. Garcia reclaimed 4th through turn thirteen. As they headed into lap three Fabiani went to the inside of Miller but couldn’t complete the pass. Haney had mechanical issues and pulled off the course coming to turn thirteen, this allowed Garcia to inherit 3rd.
Through lap four no position changes were made and the caution came out for Haney. With eight minutes left in the race, the caution was lifted and Nicol led the field to green. Garcia went side by side with Williamson and took 2nd as they headed out of turn one. Cars went by Scott Carlisle after he hit the wall through the carousel but was then able to safely resume back to racing. With 6 minutes left in the race, Nicol held a 1.5 second lead over Garcia. The race became stagnant as 3 minutes remained. Nicol continued to pull away and held a 2.3-second lead. The white flag waved as Williamson went to the inside of Garcia headed into turn one, Garcia was able to hold the 2nd position. No position change was made as Nicol took the checkered flag followed by Garcia and Williamson.