JIM RUSSELL F3 RACING SERIES RACE 7 – 12th of July 2014
A little something old and new greeted Race 7 of the Jim Russell F3 Race Series as a new group of racers were enticed to sample the best damn series on the west coast. After an intense training session the day before everyone was raring to go for Saturday’s race. Cooler temperatures than we’ve seen of late saw Chase Murray back on pole with a dip into the 1.38’s followed by fellow front runner Doug Tuttle hoping to get some points on the table after being taken out of the running last race weekend. Lining up 3rd & 4th was impressive newcomer John Schauerman alongside fellow series rookie John Jastremski.
The green flag waved and the Texas flash Chase Murray dropped the hammer to solidify his 1st spot, shooting up to turn 2 with mighty speed. Tuttle doing the same in 2nd as the wily veteran made use of his race start experience at Sonoma to pull clear of the tentative green horns. Also having a rocket start was Steve Campbell coming all the way from 6th to 3rd. Everyone settled in the first few laps but then the battles started to rage, John Schauerman determined to make back his P3 spot started to ramp it up and had a great battle with Jastremski finally making it by and setting off after Campbell. But catching and passing is a whole different discipline as lap after lap he tried to solve the puzzle that was Steve Campbell at turn 7, always getting a great run but no matter how early he made the inside move Campbell was already there. Finally in a daring move he popped to the left and ran the long way around the outside and kept just enough momentum to keep ahead into the esses. Campbell was not giving in lightly and tried to brake super late into the 9 chicane, which didn’t pay off as a brief saunter onto the grass landed him into the clutches of the next pack of Jastremski, Catchot and hard charging Roy Block. Campbell now struggling to find his early pace wasn’t able to hold off Jastremski and Catchot could smell another spot but perhaps took his eye off the ball and lost it out of 7 spinning to a stop and falling down the order to 7th before getting back underway. Next it was Blocks turn to have a go at Steve, but he wasn’t having any of it and was relentless with his defense, but in another not uncommon sight during this season Roy got inside on the last corner to beat Campbell to the finish line in 5th place. An early spin for Dan Lochner saw him recover to 8th and ever improving Walter Kuhn coming home 9th after a mid-race stop and go for an off-course excursion.
It may have been a lonely race for Chase and Doug but it didn’t make the champagne taste any less sweet as the podium saw the Mumm Pink (in commemoration of the “Pink for Papa” celebration at the Silverstone’s 50th GP celebration of recently deceased John Button, father to Jenson) raised above their heads, and the impressive John Schauerman filling out the last podium spot and the last Pirelli hat very nicely.
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