Ethan Shippert wins first Race at Portland
Ethan Shippert led from pole and all 15 laps to take the win in the Saturday afternoon Masters USA race. Although he appeared to make it look easy, Shippert had to nurse a weak brake pedal for most of the race.
Jamie Constable was second following a hot, but uneventful race. Cal Meeker provided the excitement when after sizing up Stephen Romak’s line through Turn 5, 6 and 7 he made his move on the third lap and got enough of a look through turn 7 that he was able to make the pass on the back straight. Cal put the move down to keeping a cool head in the heat. He soaked his balaclava in ice water and with the air flow was comfortable throughout the hot afternoon.
After losing third to Meeker, Stephan Romak had a uneventful run to forth. Stephan was philosophical after, saying he finished about where he expected. Bud Moeller started and finished fifth. He felt that was all he could get today. During a yellow flag he closed up with Meeker and Romak, but when the green flag came out he couldn’t hold the pace.
Ron Maydon had a return of a misfire in his LEC CRP1 and his race was over after 5 laps. The team thought they had cured as the car ran clean in the morning but returned during the race.
Sean Allen missed a shift on lap 2 and Bill Cord closed up sufficiently so the next lap he attempted to pass into turn 1. Unfortunately, as Cord came across there was contact between the right rear of his March and the left front of Allen’s McLaren and both cars retired. This promoted Dalmo de Vasconcelos and Charles Warner up to sixth and seventh. John Delane had a good run to finish eight and was pleased that the gearbox problems that had plagued the Tyrrell have been cured.
The final race of the weekend is scheduled to start at 10:35 Sunday morning.