Heartland Park Wraps Up "Regular" Season, Runoffs Next

TOPEKA , Kan. (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 Eric Prill , 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 showdown.

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 Kent 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, Kent 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. Kent 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.



© 2006 Prather Racing Inc. All rights reserved.