Runoffs rookie Jonathan Goring qualified in sixth position for the Spec Miata race at the 2015 SCCA National Championship Runoffs presented by Garmin VIRB at Daytona International Speedway. That race was unique in the history of the Runoffs because it was the first Runoffs race ever run at night under the lights. To top off the challenge, there had been rain before the race, leaving competitors to face a very wet – but drying – track. Goring chose dry tires for the race, and worked his way up to third position on lap 13. He moved into second place and passed for the lead in the second half of the final lap to claim the 2015 Spec Miata National Championship – arguably one of the most difficult SCCA National Championship titles to claim.
Amazingly, Goring did all of this in a car with very humble beginnings. “My dad and I bought a regular Miata off of Craigslist for $2,000; it had a partially blown motor, and we built the car totally from scratch,” he explains. “We had some help with the roll cage, and Mike Rossini builds our engines. My mom helped fund the effort, which I’m extremely thankful for. I’m just really glad that all the hard work paid off.”
But what happened to Goring after championship champagne had been sprayed and the trailers had departed the paddock?
“Nothing miraculous has happened – I haven’t gotten that phone call from Roger Penske yet,” Goring jokes. “But definitely interest in my coaching business has picked up, and interest in me as a driver has picked up. I’m going to be working for Tech Sport Racing in the Pirelli World Challenge series. I will be the data and telemetry analyst and driver coach. I got that opportunity at least somewhat as a result of winning at the Runoffs.”
Goring still offers coaching at his home track of Lime Rock Park almost every weekend, in addition to his duties as a coach in World Challenge.
“Things are going good – winning the championship definitely was a career booster,” Goring says.
But even with his move to the professional racing business, the SCCA Club Racing world hasn’t seen the last of Jonathan Goring. “We’re going to be participating in a few U.S. Majors Tour races in Spec Miata,” he says, “We’re definitely going to go chase the Runoffs again at Mid-Ohio [in September 2016] and see what we can do.”