The SCCA U.S. Majors Tour Northern Conference has capped its 2018 racing calendar. Nearly 600 competitors were involved in the Northern Conference’s 12-round season that visited five different venues. Drivers who collected the most points in each of the 28 different classes have earned Northern Conference championship titles.
It’s often said the Sports Car Club of America is like a family. The fight for Northern Conference E Production (EP) supremacy was literally a family affair this year as brothers Ron and Rich Olsen, both driving Mazda RX-7s, finished one-two in the points standings. The duo went head-to-head in eight different races, with Ron besting Rich seven times. That earned Ron the title of Northern Conference EP Champion, but only by 11 points over his sibling.
In GT-Lite (GTL), the Toyota Tercel of William Meyer and Nissan 200SX of Peter Zekert faced off in four Northern Conference races this year. Zekert won three of the races, but received no points in a fourth event. That resulted in Meyer earning seven more points than Zekert and rights to Northern Conference GTL Championship. Seven points was also the spread across the top four Formula Vee competitors in the Northern Conference. Jeffrey Loughead, in a Vortech CR04, ultimately claimed the Northern Conference FV Championship, with Stuart Delaney’s Caracal D-SB only two points behind. Andrew Abbott, driving a Vector AM-1, was only four points behind Delaney, and the Speed Sport AM-5 of reigning Runoffs National Champion Michael Varacins rounded out FV’s top four.
Three was the magic number for James Weida and his Scorpion W1 in the Northern Conference’s Formula 500 (F5) class. Weida claimed three wins on the season, which earned him the F5 Northern Conference Championship by only three points over the Nova Blade F500 of runner-up Thomas Diehm. And in Formula Atlantic (FA) it was Hunter Brayton who drove a Swift 014 to the FA Northern Conference Championship, besting fellow competitor Paul Ravaris, in a Pro Formula Mazda, by only two points.
The Northern Conference began its racing season in May with Round One and Round Two at Blackhawk Farms Raceway in South Beloit, Illinois. June was then a super month for the Conference as two Hoosier Racing Tire SCCA Super Tour events appeared on the schedule, the first taking place at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, followed by the WeatherTech Chicago Region June Sprints at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. July then opened with a trip to GingerMan Raceway in South Haven, Michigan, before competitors headed back to Road America for Round Nine and Round Ten. The Conference’s calendar then concluded in August at Grattan Raceway in Belding, Michigan.
Conference points are awarded to the top 20 finishers in each class. Winners earn 25 points, and 21 points go to second. Points are then doled out to others starting with 18 and descending to a single point for the 20th finisher. Only the best eight races count towards a driver’s point total. Below are Northern Conference Champions with Class: Name, Hometown, SCCA Region and Car:
-American Sedan: Andrew McDermid; Howell, MI; Milwaukee Region; Ford Mustang
-B-Spec: Brandon Vivian; Milford, MI; Detroit Region; Chevrolet Sonic
-E Production: Ron Olsen; Barrington, IL; Chicago Region; Mazda RX-7
-F Production: David Bednarz; Ann Arbor, MI; Detroit Region; Mazda Miata
-H Production: Gregory Gauper; Hubertus, WI; Milwaukee Region; Honda Civic
-Formula 500: James Weida; West Lafayette, IN; Indianapolis Region; Scorpion W1
-Formula 1000: Nicholas Vardis; Sylvan Lake, MI; Detroit Region; JDR F1000
-Formula Atlantic: Hunter Brayton; Coldwater, MI; Western Michigan Region; Swift 014
-Formula Continental: Devin Lesueur; Saint Charles, IL; Chicago Region; Van Diemen RF02
-Formula Enterprises: Becker Reardon; North Liberty, IN; South Bend Region; SCCA FE Mazda
-Formula Enterprises 2: Rhett Barkau; Freeport, IL; Blackhawk Valley Region; SCCA FE2 Mazda
-Formula F: Timothy Kautz; St. Charles, IL; Chicago Region; Piper DF3D Honda
-Formula Mazda: Steve Johncock; Bellevue, MI; Western Michigan Region; Star Formula Mazda
-Formula Vee: Jeffrey Loughead; Darien, IL; Ohio Valley Region; Vortech CR04
-GT-1: Dave Ruehlow; Hartland, WI; Milwaukee Region; Chevrolet Corvette
-GT-2: John M. Buttermore; South Lyon, MI; Detroit Region; Chevrolet Corvette Z06
-GT-3: Robert Warkocki; Frankfort, IL; Chicago Region; Mazda RX-7
-GT-Lite: William Meyer; Russellville, MO; St. Louis Region; Toyota Tercel
-Prototype 1: Jason Miller; Elkhart Lake, WI; Milwaukee Region; WynnFurst Lola
-Prototype 2: Greg Gyann; Willowbrook, IL; Chicago Region; Stohr WF-1
-Spec Miata: Voytek Burdzy; Shiller Park, IL; Blackhawk Valley Region; Mazda Miata
-Spec Racer Ford 3: Bobby Sak; Mattawan, MI; Detroit Region; SCCA Enterprises SRF3
-Super Touring Lite: John Elder; Bloomington, MN; Land O’Lakes Region; Mazda Miata
-Super Touring Under: Bruce Bannister; Novi, MI; Detroit Region; Mazda Miata
-Touring 1: Craig Capaldi; New Baltimore, MI; Detroit Region; Ford Boss 302 Mustang
-Touring 2: Aaron Kaplan; Evanston, IL; Chicago Region; BMW M3
-Touring 3: James Berlin; Savage, MN; Land O’Lakes Region; Nissan 350Z
-Touring 4: Richard Dickey; Columbus, IN; Texas Region; Mazda RX-8