Jeff Emery Takes V8 StockCar Sebring Labor Weekend Shoot Out
Jeff Emery, the reigning 2006 V8 StockCar V8 GT-1 Champ returned to action with the series after a short hiatus. Emery and his rapid, winged Monte Carlo torched the Sebring 12 hour course and the field, winning overall and V8 GT-1 in both weekend races.
Emery once again demonstrated his enormous driving talent and that wonderfully, wicked, Fred Strube built, CRD powered, red, white and blue rocket.
Emery's fast lap of the weekend, a 2.05, put him in the company of some of the fastest GT-1 and Trans Am types ever at Sebring.
June Double winner Bob Borders gamely gave chase in race one, running some of his best laps ever in his C6 Corvette. He was, however, no match for the fleeing Mr. Emery.
Back behind Emery, there was some great racing going on, especially the entertaining duel between Charles Wicht and Lee Arnold in their nearly identical V8 SPO ex Nascar South West Tour racers. In both races, Wicht and Arnold ran nose to tail, passing and re-passing each other. The duel ended in a draw of sorts, with Arnold taking race one by a foot, and Wicht taking the second by a couple of car lengths. John Martin ran solidly in third in the class in both races.
A strong field of V8 GTA cars showed with Jay Marshall, Greg Cecil, Tony Amico, and Phil Tapia looking very fast early. In race one Cecil and Marshall got good starts and it looked like we were in for a barn burner between the two, until Cecil had an "off" damaging the car and slowing him the rest of the way. Tapia and Amico took up the hunt, cutting some fast laps, but they were run down by a determined Squeak Kennedy who had charged up from his eighth place starting position to claim second behind the victorious Marshall.
In the second race, in V8 GTA, Marshall lept out to a several second advantage over Amico and a rapidly improving, first year racer Tom Graham. The order stayed the same until with a few laps to go when a flying Doug Bramer caught and passed for second and then set his sights on a now cruising Marshall. Marshall, now seeing the hauling Bramer, attempted to step it up, but overcooked it in 14 and spun with just a few corners to go, allowing a surprised Bramer to garner his first V8 StockCar win.
The series thanks the Central Florida Region SCCA for hosting and sanctioning another well run event.
The V8 StockCar racers will be back in action at the South Atlantic Road Race of Champions at Roebling Road, Sefptember 22 and 23, hosted by the Buccaneer Region of SCCA.