Heartland Park Wraps
Up "Regular" Season, Runoffs Next
(Sept. 5, 2006) – Prather Racing successfully wrapped up its 2006
“regular” season this past weekend at Heartland Park, with a couple of
track records, podiums and an unlikely Divisional Championship.
Jesse Prather (#34 Prather Racing Mazda Miata) fired
a shot heard across the country when he shattered the F Production
qualifying track record. While his lap of 1:53.551 was good enough to put
him first overall on the production grid, even ahead of all E Production
cars, the F Production cars behind him were a who’s who in the class,
including former Champions John Saurino and Steve Sargis, as well as
another favorite, Joe Walker. Saurino, Sargis and Walker have been
predicted by SportsCar Magazine to be the top three finishers at the
Runoffs. Jesse has now established himself in the same company as that
trio, and will battle for the gold this October.
With his second place finish to Sargis on Sunday,
Jesse clinched the Midwest Division Championship with three wins in four
races since acquiring the car in late June. Jesse surpassed
, who had led the standings most of the season in his Prather Racing-tuned
Lotus Super 7. Ironically, the two have yet to race against one another,
as Prill’s season ended in June owing to business conflicts and
emergency back surgery. The two friends look forward to a Runoffs
Kent Prather (#26 Prather Racing/Moss Motors/Goodyear
MGA) also impressed in Heartland Park qualifying, setting a new track
record at 1:57.024 against two of his chief rivals in G Production—Chuck
Mathis and Ken Bouquillon. The three had a good race early, with Mathis
taking the win and
holding on for second. With the Runoffs in his “back yard,” the
Prather Racing patriarch looks forward to October and the chance to win
his record-extending seventh National Championship.
In all, Prather Racing cars finished up in four of
the top five positions in the final Midwest Division F Production
standings. Jesse captured the title with 45 points, followed by Prill
(40), and Ron Davis’ MGB (34). Andy Hauck III is fifth in his Prather
Racing Miata, with 31 points.
The defending Runoffs Champion,
finished the regular season in fourth place, like Jesse, starting off a
bit late due to an off-season re-design of the front suspension.
finished with two wins and two seconds, and is picked by SportsCar
Magazine to win his seventh National Championship on Oct. 15.
Stay tuned this October as Prather Racing has its
best opportunity to bring home not just one gold medal, but two at the
SCCA National Championship Runoffs.