Spirits were high for the last round of the TC America powered by Skip Barber. Indianapolis Motor Speedway was center stage for a nail-biter finale, as two championships were decided after 40 minutes of action.
Kevin Boehm, driver of the No. 9 CrowdStrike Racing by Skip Barber Racing Honda Civic Type-R, was already crowned TC Champion at Sebring thanks to a perfect season where he ultimately claimed 14 podium finishes, and 10 wins from 14 races.
Championships remained wide open in the TCX and TCA classes. Jacob Ruud was able to prevail in his No. 1 Fast Track Racing BMW M2 CS (Cup) machine, though Colin Garrett (No. 44 Rooster Hall Racing BMW M2 CS (Cup)) finished the season a mere 2 points behind.
The same scenario was repeated in the TCA class, as Gresham Wagner (No. 21 TechSport Racing Subaru BRZ) won by only 10 points over the No. 16 Skip Barber Racing School Honda Civic Si of Carter Fartuch.
Tensions were running high now more than ever in the TCX class, as championship leader Ruud started from the back of the class. His main rival, Garrett, having gained 21 points on Friday, started in fifth place, with Brett Scroggin leading the field in his No. 51 Homewrecker Racing BMW M2 CS (Cup). Ruud lost no time making up spots, while Garrett Adams in his No. 54 Fast Track Racing BMW M2 CS (Cup) made a move on Scroggin for the lead.
Later on, Garrett made a pass for first place, with Ruud glued to his rear bumper. Ruud remained in Garrett’s rear view mirror all race long, knowing that any wrong move could potentially lose him the championship. Ruud couldn’t catch a break as the three drivers behind, Scroggin, Adams and Chris Walsh (No. 38 STR38 Motorsports BMW M2 CS (Cup)) were in a tight train. The race ended in that order, with Garrett taking home the last win of the season, Ruud finishing second and Scroggin rounding up the top three.
Rudd started the season with seven wins from the first ten races, building a healthy points lead until the final four races when Garrett was on a roll winning four in a row. When the points were tallied, it was Rudd over Garrett by a slim two-point margin.
“It is what it is; I did everything I could,” stated race winner Garrett in victory lane. “I knew it was a long shot, and I’ve never raced on road courses before this year, so it was pretty cool to do what we did.”
“At the end of the day, it’s a long season and we definitely had our ups and downs,” said 2022 TCX champion Ruud after the race. “After the last three races, I was upset but you have to move on. We did exactly what we needed to do today. It was just an amazing team effort, and I want to say thank you to everybody that made this year possible — everyone at Fast Track Racing, my parents and all my partners — they all made this year possible. I’m honestly extremely happy right now and I’m at a loss for words. It’s been a great year and I’m looking forward to next season if we can make it happen.”
The TC Championship was already decided at Sebring, but the action on track didn’t reflect that. Runner up Clay Williams (No. 60 Team MINI JCW Pro TC) left leader Kevin Boehm with no room for error. Jeff Ricca (No. 78 Genracer / Ricca Autosport Hyundai Veloster N DCT TC) made an appearance in the top three, followed by Matthew Ibrahim in his No. 6 DRS & Garagistic BMW M240iR.
With 15 minutes remaining on the clock, Williams made a push for the lead, but eventually had to yield as his MINI seemed to have trouble down the front stretch.
“I just want to try to replicate this performance in the future,” Boehm said, having not missed a podium this season. “This has been a year that I will never forget. I can’t thank Skip Barber Racing School enough for prepping the car all year. We’ve been on the podium every race because of the reliability of the car, first and foremost. I am really happy to have put CrowdStrike and AWS on the top step both days at Indianapolis in front of our guests. I want to thank everybody that put us together and gave us a chance to come out here and be successful. The future for me is just trying to do this again.”
Ricca finished second in his No. 78 Genracer / Ricca Autosport Hyundai Veloster N DCT TC, with Ken Fukuda claiming his first podium of the year in his No. 42 Skip Barber Racing School Honda Civic Type-R.
Honda won the TC manufacturers championship.
As we have seen many times this year, the TCA class saw the most action. Drama was expected with championship leader Gresham Wagner starting from the last spot on the grid in his No. 21 TechSport Racing Subaru BRZ. Carter Fartuch, just seven points behind Wagner, started from pole in class, which meant it was about to be an intense climb to the front of the pack for Wagner.
Sally McNulty made her way to the top three in the No. 780 VGRT Honda Civic Si, but eventually had contact with Canadian racer PJ Groenke in the No. 62 JCW Team MINI, which brought out the only full course caution of the race.
Fartuch was holding onto the lead, but ran wide, allowing Wagner to move up the field. It became a TechSport showdown as Devin Anderson was leading the TCA field in his No. 22 Subaru BRZ, closely followed by his teammate. Fartuch rounded out the top three and missed the championship by 10 points. Overall, Fartuch had scored 11 podium finishes including three wins.
“It’s so special to win here,” explained Anderson after the race. “I can’t wait to kiss the bricks! Last year we didn’t finish either race, so to come back and be able to win this one is amazing. This also means that we will be first and third in the driver’s championship, and champions in the teams championship. As a team, we have never won the driver’s championship. I want to thank TechSport Racing, my amazing crew and my partners.”
“Well first of all TechSport, K1 and Redline have been great partners all year,” noted TCA champion Wagner. “They gave me a fast car to win seven races and be on the podium at a couple more. All year was a build-up to this moment. I knew what I had to do and I knew Devin [Anderson] would be there to help with managing the point situation so once I saw him behind me and knew he had the speed to win, I just had to mirror what Carter [Fartuch] was doing. At the end I saw that I had a good pace so I figured why not make it a one-two if I can!”
Honda is successful in the TCA class as well, clinched the Manufacturer’s title.
TC America will start its 2023 season at NOLA Motorsports Park in February.