Hotshoe Michael Carter turned 18 this weekend, and celebrated in fine style. In the 2nd qualifying session, Carter got the dream lap of a push and a pull and put his car on the pole with 1 time of 1:37.1, m ore than 1.2 seconds faster than his own lap record set here at the 2017 Majors. Team mates Danny Steyn started in 6th, Jonathan Goring in 8th, Jason Connole in 13th, Spencer Patterson in 15th and Alex Acosta in 16th. Steyn was debuting a completely new build by OPM Autosports and Goring was making a comeback to Spec Miata after a couple of years off.
With none of his Rossini team mates close on the grid, Carter had a mission to make sure that he broke up the other teams and from turn 5 on the first lap, Carter put his bumper to Todd Buras and pushed him away from his team mate Preston Pardus. Behind them Blake Clements and Chris Haldeman worked together until Clements had electrical difficulties. Steyn was in no-mans land trying to hang on to the front 6, with Goring and Connole a little further back.
Steyn and Elivan Goulart managed to put Pardus behind them, and the top 6 ran in close formation. with a few laps to go, Goulart’s car shut off, and Steyn was back in no mans land falling back and Pardus got around him. Up front Haldeman and Carter were working together well, but Buras and Pardus reconnected and started to close on the front two.
Haldeman made a tactical error on the last lap exiting Turn 8, and allowed Carter to get away, and Pardus and Buras squeezed by to put Haldeman back in 4th. But the drive of the day was Jason Connole who drove all the way to finish 5th, his first top 5 Majors result. Steyn finished 6th, Goring was 7th, and Spencer Patterson finished 10th. Alex Acosta started in 16th drove to 11th, then fell back to 24th after an incident ahead, and drove back to 19th
A huge congrats to Michael and Jason for their breakout performances, and we are thrilled to have FIVE of our Rossini engines in the TOP TEN cars at the first Majors of the season.