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American Iron Race Report - Putnam Park Indiana May 20 & 21 2006 

The combined Midwest and Ohio/Indiana region races were held May 20th and 21st just 30 miles west of Indianapolis Indiana at the beautiful 1.766 mile Putnam Park Road Course.   The weekend provided perfect weather with lots of sun and temperatures in the mid 70’s.  A large field of AI/X, CMC and even an AI Vintage made for some great competitive racing once again at Putnam Park.  The qualifying results had Chris Griswold atop the AIX, Robin Burnett leading the AI battle, Matt King snagging the CMC pole, and Paul Faessler in beautiful Vintage Mustang in the AIV pole.  Be sure to check out the tight qualifying of the AI cars; 5 cars in the 1:19’s with only a little over a quarter second separating positions 3-7!   

Saturday Qualifying

AIX                                        Best Time

1. Chris Griswold                  1:15.393

2. Stephen Post                    1:21.266

3. Stan Berry                         1:21.928

4. Mickey Remen                  1:22.118

5. Wade Gagich                    1:22.206

6. Bill Collins                         1:22.339

7. Mike Hill                            1:26.868

AI

1. Robin Burnett                   1:18.387

2. Bob Denton                      1:18.708

3. Greg Walker                      1:19.599

4. Dean Smeltzer                   1:19.814

5. Jason Andrew                  1:19.828

6. Richard Cranston             1:19.857

7. Tom Schneidau                1:19.893

8. Matt Erickson                   1:20.235

9. Jeff Feit                              1:20.521

10. Sidney Franklin              1:21.104

11. Edwin Molitor 1:21.322

12. David Diehl                     1:22.088

13. Ted Schwartz                  1:22.089

14. Marc Ruhling                  1:23.099

15. Bryan White                   1:23.734

16. Henderson                      no-time

 CMC

1. Matt King                          1:22.704

2. Robb Brent                        1:22.973

3. Aaron Bambach               1:23.785

 AIV

1. Paul Faessler                     1:20.336 

Saturday’s race started with the CMC guys and a standing start.  Matt King got a great launch and powered off to the lead into turn one followed closely by Rookie driver Robb Brent.  King and Brent would stay nose to tail the entire race with Brent showing his nose a few times to keep the pressure on King.  King got loose coming out of turn four with Brent close on his tail and spun off to the left side of the track before turn 5.  Stuck in the mud from all the recent rain, King’s day was over. Brent cruised the last lap and a half in his Mid-Coast Performance Mustang to take the CMC Victory.

 The flying start for the AI & AIX cars was a half lap behind the standing start of the CMC and Factory Five Racers (FFR) group.  Chris Griswold in his GV Machine / Maximum Motorsports / DSS Racing Mustang was on the overall and AIX pole with the AI pole sitter Robin Burnett Steeda Mustang along side.  When the green flag dropped Griswold blasted off ahead of the AI cars and never looked back.  The AI had Bob Denton getting a great launch and pulled up along side of Burnett into turn one and took the position into turn 2.  Bob held the lead for the first four laps, but Burnett got by on lap five after the full course caution for an FFR car off in the kitty liter in turn one.  Smeltzer and Denton pushed Burnett the entire race until Denton had an electrical issue which had him drop off the pace with four laps to go.  Walker and Andrew would also have a great battle with Walker ahead by just four tenths of a second at the checkered flag.  The AI battles were fun to watch as Burnett, Smeltzer, Denton and Andrew would all have fast laps in the 1:18’s.  Jeff Henderson also had a great run starting in the back of the field working his way up to 6th place after it was all over.  Great job guys!

Saturday Race Results:                             

AIX                                        Fast Lap

1. Griswold                            1:14.335

2. Mickey Remen                  1:21.029

3. Wade Gagich                    1:21.875

4. Mike Hill                            1:25.541

5. Stan Berry                         1:28.594

6. Stephen Post                    1:22.280

7. Bill Collins                         1:20.911 

AI

1. Robin Burnett                   1:18.019

2. Dean Smeltzer                   1:18.361

3. Greg Walker                      1:19.116

4. Jason Andrew                  1:18.237

5. Jeff Feit                              1:19.709

6. Jeff Henderson                 1:22.213

7. David Diehl                       1:23.196

8. Marc Ruhling                    1:22.225

9. Bryan White                     1:23.235

10. Bob Denton                    1:18.467

11. Ed Molitor                       1:22.305

12. Sidney Franklin              1:19.967

13. Tom Schneidau              1:20.809

14. David Algozine              1:26.260

15. Richard Cranston           no-time

 CMC

1. Robb Brent                        1:22.373

2. Aaron Bambach               1:24.849

3. Matt King                          1:22.909

 AIV

1. Paul Faessler                     1:20.345

 Sunday’s weather was just as nice with the track being in great conditions for some fast laps.  Griswold was out with rear axle problems got to watch the races from the outside for a change.  It proved to be a good day for spectating as the qualifying and races were very close with a lot of nose to tail battles throughout the field. The AIX pole battle to be settled between the Ohio/Indiana guys.  Stan Berry took the pole position in AIX, while Robin Burnett ripped off a 1:17.737 for the AI pole.  Rookie Robb Brent took the CMC pole.

 Sunday Qualifying

 AIX

1. Stan Berry .                       1:21.555

2. Wade Gagrich                   1:22.044

3. Mickey Remen                  1:22.480

4. Bill Collins                         1:22.970

 AI

1. Robin Burnett                   1:17.737

2. Dean Smeltzer                   1:17.944

3. Richard Cranston             1:18.566

4. Matt Erickson                   1:18.845

5. Bob Denton                      1:18.945

6. Jason Andrews                                1:19.117

7. Jeff Feit                              1:19.609

8. Sidney Franklin                1:20.055

9. Greg Walker                      1:20.128

10. Ted Schwartz                  1:21.043

11. David Diehl                     1:21.985

12. Marc Ruhling                  1:22.022

13. Jeff Henderson               1:22.812

14. Bryan White                   1:23.378

15. Chris Nickell                    1:26.218

 CMC

1. Robb Brent                        1:22.479

2. Aaron Bambach               1:22.662

3. Matt King                          1:23.507 

Sunday’s race had the CMC standing start one half lap before the flying start of the AI/X field.  Robb Brent kept his pole position going into turn one.  King would be on his tail who for the first few laps, but could not keep up as Brent gapped him with FFR traffic as Brent worked through most of the FFR traffic and took his 2nd  CMC win, as a rookie!  Matt King spun going into turn 5 on the last lap letting Aaron Bambach to claim 2nd.

 The AI/X fields had battles throughout and it was hard to keep up with all the close racing.  Burnett and Smeltzer went into turn one were Burnett got ahead of Smeltzer into one.  The two battled the entire race nose to tail with Smeltzer poking his nose in a few times, but could not make the pass stick.  Andrews picked up two spots to 4th in the first 2 turns and had a great battle with Bob Denton and Matt Erickson the entire race.  Andrews eventually got by for 3rd, but Richard Cranston was only a car length behind at the line.  Denton was also close in tow for 5th.  Fast laps for the race had SIX AI CARS in the 1:18’s, WOW!

 Sundays Race Results 

AIX

1. Wade Gagich                    1:19.867

2. Bill Collins                         1:22.045

3. Stan Berry                         1:21.665

4. Mickey Remen 1:19.760

 AI

1. Robin Burnett                   1:18.318

2. Dean Smeltzer                   1:18.363

3. Matt Erickson                   1:18.747

4. Jason Andrews                                1:18.647

5. Richard Cranston             1:18.290

6. Bob Denton                      1:18.847

7. Greg Walker                      1:19.948

8. Jeff Feit                              1:19.811

9. Ted Schwartz                    1:20.578

10. Sidney Franklin              1:20.723

11. Bryan White                   1:21.034

12. Marc Ruhling                  1:22.798

13. Jeff Henderson               1:23.968

14. David Diehl                     1:23.839

 CMC

1. Robb Brent                        1:22.601

2. Aaron Bambach               1:23.555

3. Matt King                          1:23.369

It was a great weekend of racing.  The unofficial season points are located (here). Come see the next round of racing for the Midwest Region at MAM in Pacific Junction Iowa http://www.midamericamotorplex.com on June 17th & 18th, 2006.  Information & registration for the event can be found Nasa MidWest Region - National Auto Sport Association.  See you there!

Sincerely,

Chris Griswold

AI/X & CMC Director - Midwest Region

#17 AIX

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