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Oct 13

Koykka wins at Watkins Glen, one race left to decide title

Matias Koykka took his fourth win of the year and inched closer to the 2012 title

F1600 F Championship logoMatias Koykka bounced back from his fourth place starting position to take his fourth win of the 2012 F1600 Formula F Championship Series at Watkins Glen for Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing. The Spectrum/Honda driver from Finland thus pulls out a 20 point lead (with drops calculated, per Series rules) over Brandon Newey, who finished second, ahead of Koykka’s teammate Neil Alberico, setting up a Championship showdown in the season finale scheduled for Sunday.

“We got a really good start from fourth and the car was fast for the race,” said Koykka. “Once I got in front of Brandon he tried to get around me a few times but I was able to keep the lead. Tomorrow we can’t make any mistakes.”

Twenty-year-old Newey will need a strong performance on Sunday and some luck to take the title for Bryan Herta Autosport with Curb/Agajanian. Not helping Newey however, were engine problems affecting new teammate Adrian Starrantino in the other Mygale/Honda that left the car in the pits for most of the race.

Added Newey: “I can’t think about the Championship while driving, it’s too distracting. I go out and do the best I can. I have had a fast car all weekend, but there was a bit of understeer today.”

Newey noted he would not mind rain for the 12-lap season finale on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Koykka most definitely benefited from new teammate Neil Alberico, with a strong open-wheel resume, who at times kept Newey busy during the race.

“That was a really fun race,” explained Alberico, driving the No. 9. “The car is completely different from other cars I’ve driven with the chassis and engine packaged along with the spec tires.”

Alberico ran the fastest lap of the race in the Spectrum chassis, at 1:57.693, besting the current race record for F1600 at the 3.4-mile Watkins Glen.

After struggling with mechanical problems at Mid-Ohio, Jim Goughary bounced back to a fourth place finish – looking very competitive – in his Van Diemen/Honda, with Roberto Lorena completing the top five for Quantum Racing Services in another Van Diemen/Honda entry.

Jeremy Grenier, fighting a bad cold, was sixth at the end of the race in the Citation/Honda, followed by Steve Oseth and Sergio Pasian, who finished in the top ten in the F2000 Championship Series race about an hour prior to jumping in a F1600 car. Keenan Harris and Art Foster completed the top ten.

The F1600 Championship Series season concludes on Sunday with a 11:25 local time qualifying round followed by a 3:55 race start, live updates are available on www.f1600series.com.

Race Results

Pos No. Name Laps Total Tm Diff Gap Avg. Speed Best Tm Best Spd
1 10 Matias Koykka 12 23:44.849 - - 102.175 1:57.874 102.923
2 98 Brandon Newey 12 23:46.531 +1.682 +1.682 102.055 1:57.703 103.073
3 9 Neil Alberico 12 23:49.717 +4.868 +3.186 101.827 1:57.693 103.082
4 7 Jim Goughary 12 24:01.949 +17.100 +12.232 100.963 1:58.794 102.126
5 17 Roberto Lorena 12 24:02.138 +17.289 +0.189 100.950 1:58.873 102.058
6 12 Jeremy Grenier 12 24:07.726 +22.877 +5.588 100.560 1:59.138 101.831
7 72 Steve Oseth 12 24:07.886 +23.037 +0.160 100.549 1:59.113 101.853
8 23 Sergio Pasian 12 24:08.438 +23.589 +0.552 100.511 1:59.165 101.808
9 13 Keenan Harris 12 24:08.504 +23.655 +0.066 100.506 1:59.107 101.858
10 21 Art Foster 12 24:20.825 +35.976 +12.321 99.659 2:00.469 100.706
11 5 David Clubine 12 24:21.065 +36.216 +0.240 99.642 2:00.559 100.631
12 07 Steve Bamford 12 24:21.119 +36.270 +0.054 99.639 1:59.830 101.243
13 01 John McCusker 12 25:04.395 +1:19.546 +43.276 96.772 2:03.529 98.212
14 55 Ray Phillips 12 25:14.961 +1:30.112 +10.566 96.098 2:03.399 98.315
15 15 Jim Oseth 12 25:23.054 +1:38.205 +8.093 95.587 2:03.257 98.428
16 18 Dan Pyanowski 12 25:59.531 +2:14.682 +36.477 93.351 2:07.138 95.424
17 44 Ed Callo 11 24:01.589 1 Lap 1 Lap 92.573 2:08.757 94.224
18 68 Steve Jenks 11 24:55.010 +53.421 +53.421 89.265 2:01.706 99.683
19 14 Ross Devoe 7 15:07.861 5 Laps 4 Laps 93.543 2:06.610 95.822
20 73 Bob Perona 7 25:14.047 +10:06.186 +10:06.186 56.091 2:00.351 100.805
21 97 Adrian Starrantino 3 6:08.234 9 Laps 4 Laps 98.839 2:00.402 100.762

source: Monty Mathisen, mathisenmedia.com, photo: Valet