Jonathon Kotyk, of Atlantic Beach, Florida, led flag to flag in his No. 81 K-Hill Motorsports Mygale Honda to capture a resounding Formula F SCCA Runoffs win ahead of the No. 88 Braeburn/Hoosier/HomeCutDonuts Piper DF3D Honda driven by Tim Kautz, and the No. 54 Hybels/Max Ent-Porter Racing Swift DB6 Honda of Chuck Horn.
This was the first National Championship for Kotyk, who finished fourth in FF at the 2017 SCCA Runoffs at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
“We made sure we were sorted in practice and then when qualifying came around we got a lot closer,” Kotyk said. “We just made sure we had a good strategy for the race and pull away, so that’s what we did.”
Behind Kotyk, the battle for podium spots was punctuated with tense moments. The first of these moments came on lap 5 when Kautz bumped wheels with the No. 73 BPMS/Bell Helmets Piper DF3D Honda driven by Bob Perona while battling in the top three. Both drivers lost time, with Perona getting the brunt of it, losing a few spots. Perona was not able to rally back into the top three.
“We had a little contact going into 11,” Kautz said. “I thought I had gotten far enough inside of Bob Perona, but he initiated the turn-in and we bumped front wheels.”
From there, Kautz put his head down and gave chase to Horn.
“Every lap I was three feet closer, and he was 100 yards ahead of me, so it was grueling,” Kautz said.
As Kautz put his head down, so did Horn in second.
“Jonathon went chasing something, I don’t know where he went but he went chasing something,” Horn said. “I just focused on my lines.”
As Kautz reeled in Horn, there was a second tense moment when, in the waning laps, Horn spun his DB6 exiting the carousel, giving up the second spot to Kautz.
“We hit lapped traffic and it got a little dicey at times,” Horn said. “Towards the end I made a mistake.”
Perona rallied back from the contact to finish fourth, and Denny Renfrow filled out the top five driving the No. 11 Towhee Racing Piper DL7 Honda. The Sunoco Hard Charger Award went to Joseph Hopkins who drove his No. 7 Full Throttle Graphics/Tim Terry Swift DB6 Honda from 12th to eighth place.
The 55th SCCA National Championship Runoffs crowns Sports Car Club of America’s Road Racing National Champions this year at Sonoma Raceway in California Friday, Oct. 19 through Sunday, Oct 21.
Live, online video coverage of Runoffs races, presented by Mazda, is available throughout the three days of competition at SCCA.com/live. An audio race call, supplied by the Super Tour Radio broadcast team, is also available, as well as live timing and scoring for each National Championship race.
Provisional results for Saturday’s Formula F race at the 55th SCCA National Championship Runoffs from Sonoma Raceway, with finish position, starting position in parentheses, driver, hometown, car and laps completed.
1, (1), Jonathon Kotyk, Atlantic Beach, FL, Honda Mygale Honda, 20.
2, (4), Tim Kautz, St. Charles, IL, Piper DF3D Honda, 20.
3, (2), Chuck Horn, Los Gatos, CA, Swift DB6 Honda, 20.
4, (3), Bob Perona, Indianapolis, IN, Piper DL7 Honda, 20.
5, (6), Denny Renfrow, Kelseyville, CA, Piper DL7 Honda, 20.
6, (7), Rick Payne, Mission, BC, Van Diemen RF99 Honda, 20.
7, (8), Jon Brandstad, Stockton, CA, Swift DB6 Honda, 20.
8, (12), Joseph Hopkins, Oakland, CA, Swift DB6 Honda, 20.
9, (9), Brad Hayes, Santa Cruz, CA, Piper DL7 Honda, 20.
10, (5), Skip Streets, San Clemente, CA, Piper DF05 Honda, 20.
11, (10), Steve Meyer, Longmont, CO, Swift DB6 Honda, 20.
12, (13), Edward Erlandson, Burbank, CA, Swift DB6 Honda, 20.
13, (14), David Jalen, Alameda, CA, Mygale SJ-09 Honda, 20.
14, (18), Eric Little, Placentia, CA, Swift DB1 Ford, 20.
15, (16), Dwight Rider, Aurora, CO, Swift DB6 Honda, 20.
16, (15), Dougas Brenner, Simi Valley, CA, Van Diemen RF00 Honda, 19.
17, (19), Bill Kephart, Colorado Springs, CO, Vestal 15AB Ford, 19.
18, (20), Michael Bernstein, San Ramon, CA, Piper DF05 Honda, 19.
19, (17), Manuel Leonardo, San Francisco, CA, Piper DL7 Honda, 19.
20, (21), Mark Keller, Snohomish, WA, Piper DF05 Honda, 19.
21, (11), Doug Learned Jr., Marina, CA, Piper DL7 Honda, 16.
22, (22), R Lawence Bangert, Issaquah, WA, Swift DB1 Ford, 5.
Length of Race: 50 Miles
Overall Time of Race: 34:20.255 (avg. 88.067 mph)
Margin of Victory: 09.891 seconds
Fastest Race Lap: 1:42.049 (88.898 mph)
Lap Leaders: #81 laps 1-20
Sunoco Hard Charger: #7 Joseph Hopkins