Miller: End of the Season for Some, End of the Road for Other
Photo: Grand Am
This weekend promises to be a busy one at Miller Motorsports Park in Toole, UT. The final Grand Am race of the season will take place there, as well as the final two races in the Ford Racing Mustang Challenge series.
Multimatic Motorsports is arriving with a brand new Boss 302R Mustang, replacing one lost to a heavy shunt in Trois Rivieres. Post-build testing indicates that the new #15 car, driven by Joe Foster and Scott Maxwell, is already faster out of the box than its predecessor.
Maxwell is looking forward to the event. “The guys really did an outstanding job in building the new car. When we shook it down at Calabogie [Motorsports Park], it was immediately faster so I am looking forward to seeing how it performs at Miller Motorsport Park. The season certainly has been a huge challenge but we are all looking forward to making amends and finishing on a strong note.”
This weekend will feature another change for competitors. After running the circuit’s winding 4.486-mile, 24-turn full circuit since in 2006, drivers will compete on the 3.048-mile, 15-turn outer course in both the Rolex Series and Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge races.
The GS-class championship is not locked up, although BMW M3 drivers, Charles Espenlaub and Charlie Putman, need only finish in fifth place to grab the iron. However, Billy Johnson and Jack Roush Jr. in the #61 ROUSH Performance Products Ford Mustang GT, have a chance. Currently in third place, fourteen points behind the leaders, the pair have eight consecutive top-five results and the dynamic Mustang duo won this race last year.
This race will also see the first Dodge Challenger show up in the hands of series veterans Ian James, Tom Nastasi and the crew from Blackforest Racing. Four Camaro GS.R entries are on the roster – two from Stevenson Motorsports and one each from Mitchum Motorsports and the Canadians at CKS Autosport. The Boss 302 and Mustang GTs combine for a total herd of eleven entries.
A full slate of twenty participants will line up for the final event in the Ford Racing Mustang Challenge series. After three seasons, the series will end where it began. The Mustang Challenge was first announced at the 2007 SEMA Show and is the first national race series to be run by a track, as Miller Motorsports Park developed and managed the program.
Andrew Caddell won the series championship in both 2008 and 2009, and was the only driver to be personally handed the Miller Cup by Larry H. Miller before Miller’s untimely passing in February, 2009. Going into the closing event, the championship is tied between Jason von Kluge and Tony Buffomante.
“This title will come down to who the best driver is. To be tied after a full season of racing is just a testament to how fair and level this race series is,” commented Buffomante.
Photos: Wes Duenkel / Mustang Challenge