beginning to run out of superlatives to describe Chris Albin,
now the Mid-Am Driver of the year for the fifth time in six years.
15 starts, 14 wins, one DNF. How does one describe dominance? How
about impeccable preparation mated to consummate skill. Mark
Donohue called it the Unfair Advantage. But for the first time
since 1996, Albin's home Region is not the top dog in MiDiv, and
you have to go back to 1992 for a season when St. Louis was not
in the Top Two of listed champions.
CITY - Seven champions are crowned including the DotY runner-up,
Ron Lentz, with an 11-win season to take Spec Racer Ford
for the second straight year. Also at 84 points was Sports 2000
champ Jack Platt. After several years of trying, Ken Raley
finally got that GT1 crown with a 5-win season. Phil Hemes
similarly won five to become the new Formula Ford champ. Randy
Kent had just five starts in his Radical and all were wins to
become D Sports Racing champ and rank seventh on the Driver of the
Year list. Then there was ITC with an unbreakable tie for the championship
and two KC drivers receiving the clocks. Both Mark Buffon
and Dale Nelson had 45 points, three wins, and one second.
First tiebreak is most wins. The second is to match the drivers'
records against each other - Buffon and Nelson met twice, each accounting
for the other's lone runner-up finish. Dead-even unbreakable tie.
KC topped the runner-up award list as well with five - Kyle Ritter
in EP, Jarold Boettcher in ITA, O.L. Kinney in
SRF, Bill Tucker in AS, and Harlan Moore in Super
Prod. An unfortunate DNF in the final race left Pasquale Trozzolo
third in FC.
- Ben Diringer was the top points-earner of four Wichita
champions, claiming the Formula Vee crown. Four wins gave Chester
Bailey the Super Production championship. Dave Wilcox
gave his dad's Swift a ride, winning four and the F/Atlantic title.
Dick Price won his second F Production championship by winning
the season's final three races. Mitch Johnson finished the
year 3rd in ITA.
LOUIS - Three champions topped by Chris Albin's dominating
run to his eighth straight ITB crown. Fred Tranbarger won
two, including the season finale, to become the ITE champion. Donald
Strathearn posted five wins to claim Club Continental again.
Four drivers take runner-up honors and four more get third-place
awards. Runners-up were Mary Daly in GT1, Jay Musgrave
in F/Continental, Tim Blythe in FF, and Chris Flier
in ITE but still sixth in the Driver of the Year rankings with five
wins. Show money (figuratively speaking) goes to Gary Payne in ITS,
David Bryson in SSB with five wins before he converted his Miata
to ITS, Otto Roberts in GT1, Ed Smith in AS.
- Aaron Kelley is the ITS champion after four wins. Mickey
Schreiner also won four to claim his seventh HP championship
and his third in a row. Runner-up in ITS was Marty Wagner,
and Frank Chambers takes the third-place award in Club Ford.
MOUNTAIN - Court Whitlock is GP champ for the fifth
time in the last six years after four wins. Shane Bennoch
won three races and is F/Continental champ by just three points.
Chris Ingram is the runner-up in Club Ford.
- 69-point scores brought championships to Ted Johnson in
American Sedan and Hans Iwand in Club Ford, but Iwand's four
outright wins ranked him fifth in Driver of the Year.
- Michael McBride is the SSB champ with a Bonus Race win
and 72 points. Matt Duea won five and succeeds his dad as
the GT4 champion.
ILLINOIS - Texan Bob Stretch did the long commutes to
win 6 of 6 in ITA and place fourth in the Driver of the Year tally.
Bill Briggen is the runner-up in ITB.
- Jesse Prather's rookie season resulted in seven EP wins,
a championship, and third in the Driver of the Year list. Bill
Allman finished the year third in SRF.
- Edward Hicks is the runner-up in SSB with four wins.
MOINES VALLEY - Harlan Donaldson won the last race of
the season to claim third place in ITB.