Despite some negative sentiments about scheduling and area accommodations before the event, the mood at Buckingham Field in Lehigh Acres, FL was overwhelmingly positive all weekend for the Tire Rack SCCA Fort Myers Match Tour. If anything, overcoming any negativity brought the competitors closer with shared hotel rooms and co-driver opportunities common throughout the paddock.
Exceptional sportsmanship was apparent throughout the grid, but most visible as the result of to Chris Larson cording a tire on his corvette. Greg Hahn lent Larson the “rumble bee” truck so that he could source replacement tires and return to compete the next day. Despite some issues with alignment reliability, Larson went on to claim second place in the Lucky Dog Challenge on Sunday.
Indisputably, it was a big weekend for the Tire Rack SCCA National Solo program as the Solo Spec Coupe made its debut. Five drivers competed in SSC while another two joined on the Ladies side. Michael Lawson claimed the first SSC National Solo Event win by a margin of 3.567 seconds over Todd Freeman. Tonda Lawson claimed a commanding SSCL victory by over 12 seconds.
A shout out is due for the Ft Myers Brewing Company and accompanying food trucks who were the de facto SCCA hangout after competition runs. It felt like the whole event showed up to eat and unwind. While the locals were a bit confused at the influx of stickered-up cars, they were welcoming nonetheless.
Top Dog: Steven Hughes, E Street
Lucky Dog: William Mitchel, A Street
Under Dog: Paul Wright, B Street Prepared
Complete class and challenge results may be found here.