Race Report: 2024 Open Wheel Series, Round 3

2024 Open Wheel SeriesWow! What an amazingly competitive day of racing. Round 3 was not only blistering fast; it was one of the most competitive race days we’ve had at Stewart Raceway in quite a while.

We’ve made a few changes in our racing formats using fuel allocation parameters that seem to be helping level the playing field between Sportsman and Expert drivers, who race together but are scored separately.

The key ingredient for this seems to be a slight change in fuel delivery during pit stops. All drivers are allocated the same fuel at the start of each race, but Sportsman drivers enjoy a slightly faster fuel refill time than Expert drivers: six-second tank refills for Sportsman drivers and eight seconds for Expert drivers.

This small change seems to pay big dividends to the Sportsman ranks, making the racing much more competitive and changing fuel races’ overall dynamics and excitement.

Short Story

Place Name Laps Points Total Time
1 Steve Stewart 471 227 3127.513
2 Aaron Castro 467 216 3141.732
3 George Peters 461 204 3114.904
4 Eric Lane 419 163 2923.108
5 Kevin Webster 396 133 3108.326
6 Jerry Pearson 230 102 1536.13
7 Martha Elderon 102 36 775.14

It was a very competitive race day! Jerry and Martha had to depart after Race 2. All others completed all four official races.

Race 1: MegaG+ 1.7 Modified (IROC)

Our latest and increasingly popular car class. It is a perfect warmup for the subsequent individual Modified class. Again, an extremely competitive race, with nearly all drivers winning at least one segment. Second through fourth were only separated by one lap at the finish, and the top three finishers were separated by just one point.  While Sportsman driver Kevin Webster jumped out front, winning the first segment, Sportsman Jerry Pearson won the next three and remained in the lead until segment 5 when Expert Aaron Castro took over the lead through segments 5 and 6.

Place Name Laps Points Total Time
1 Steve Stewart 118 55 755.518
2 Aaron Castro 115 54 788.33
3 George Peters 114 53 759.984
4 Jerry Pearson 113 47 792.398
5 Kevin Webster 105 43 762.624
6 Eric Lane 103 41 757.853
7 Martha Elderon 102 36 775.14

Race 2: MegaG+ 1.7 Modified

Not actual podium, Race Director spaced–again!

After 120 laps with an IROC version of the same car, everybody was well-prepared for this barnburner race. Jerry Pearson dominated this race with one segment win and three second-place finishes. Jerry led the race from Segment 2 through to the finish, besting a hard-charging Expert, Aaron Castro, by just two points and grabbing the top podium spot, great driving, Jerry!

Place Name Laps Points Total Time
1 Jerry Pearson 117 55 743.732
2 Aaron Castro 119 53 780.164
3 Steve Stewart 116 52 788.384
4 George Peters 117 50 747.699
5 Eric Lane 110 44 744.725
6 Kevin Webster 96 28 770.995

Race 3: Viper V-SPEC F1/Indy 1.7 Lexan (IROC) c/o Eric Lane

Another great IROC set to prepare for the day’s finale, the Viper V-SPEC “Spec Stock” class. Sportsman driver Eric “Fast” Lane graciously donated these cars to Stewart Raceway. How many tracks have you visited that have Viper V-SPEC IROC sets?  This mainly was a fast and furious battle between the three Experts, but Eric Lane put in a great effort in Segment 1, placing second to Home Cook’n just one lap down and very close on total run time–Nice driving, Eric!  Aaron Castro would win two segments but came up short of Home Cook’n despite a perfect 30 laps in the final segment.

Place Name Laps Points Total Time
1 Steve Stewart 120 61 934.366
2 Aaron Castro 116 56 926.674
3 George Peters 112 46 950.901
4 Eric Lane 102 38 760.075
5 Kevin Webster 100 34 913.266

Race 4: Viper V-SPEC “SPEC STOCK” Lexan

Pinned Lexan F1/Indy bodies.

It is always an adrenaline-pumping race, but this one was really hot! Aaron Castro blasted into the lead from the get-go, winning the first segment just ahead of George Peters but on the same lap. Aaron would hold the race lead until the final segment, but George was clicking off high-speed lap times, vying for his first race win of the day. George was clicking off faster and faster laps but missed besting Home Cook’n at the finish of the last segment. George was just .381 seconds off the race winner’s segment run time and short just four points–great effort, George!

Place Name Laps Points Total Time
1 Steve Stewart 117 59 649.245
2 George Peters 118 55 656.32
3 Aaron Castro 117 53 646.564
4 Eric Lane 104 40 660.455
5 Kevin Webster 95 28 661.441

Speaking of lap times, George set new lap records on three lanes during this race, and Aaron set another. George’s fastest time of the race was 4.270 seconds in Lane 4 (Orange). Aaron clicked off a 4.409-second lap in Lane 5 (Blue). Blistering pace!

We did one fun race after the official races were over, running Eric’s MegaG+ 1.7 (Scooby Doo) Vans IROC set–way fun cars, thanks Eric!

Official Series Standings After Round 3:

With two more Rounds to go, Kevin Webster and Eric Lane are in a heated contest for Sportsman honors, with just two points separating the two drivers after Round 3.

In the Expert ranks, it’s not as close, but certainly still up for grabs between the top three points earners.

Place Name Laps Points Total Time
1 Kevin Webster 1046 349 7360.796
2 Eric Lane 1077 347 5300.734
3 Jerry Pearson 910 290 3850.142
4 Shaylin Maddox 176 88 1428.228
5 Pam Ebert 154 64 1390.808
6 Abe Maddox 148 64 1337.006
7 Martha Elderon 102 36 775.14
1 Steve Stewart* 1567 697 8659.291
2 Aaron Castro* 1557 656 8656.26
3 George Peters* 1539 606 8651.218
4 Jordan Walker* 590 140 2405.214


Okay, Round 3 of this incredibly competitive and exciting series is in the books. Stay tuned for a post on other lap records broken in Round 3. Drivers continue to get faster and faster on SR3.

Round 4 is tentatively slated for March 30th.

Author: Race Director

Just an old slot car racer and Race Director at Stewart Raceway.

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