By Steve Wittich
What the quickest driver of the day had to say:
“It feels great to finish the weekend on the top of the charts,” said Brooks, last year’s Hyperco Rookie of the Year. “The Exclusive Autosport car has been on rails all weekend long. We definitely put in some consistent results. We know it is practice, but it always feels good to be on top, and it is definitely a nice confidence booster going into the season. We are just going to put our heads down and push for some good results at Barber.”
- 21 of the 23 drivers were below the track record set by Michael Epps (Belardi Auto Racing) during qualifying for the 2014 Cooper Tires Winterfest.
- The top six and seven of the top ten drivers on the combined timesheet were veterans. Pabst Racing rookie Jace Denmark was the quickest of the rookies and was joined in the top ten by fellow rookies Billy Frazer (Exclusive Autosport) and Myles Rowe (Force Indy).
- Are the Pabst Racing drivers identical triplets? Josh Pierson, Denmark, and Yuven Sundaramoorthy each turned 121 laps and finished the test in positions six-seven-eight, separated by a minuscule 0.1052 seconds.
- Three teams dominated the top ten on the combined timesheet. DEForce Racing and Pabst Racing placed three drivers in the top ten and were joined by a pair of Exclusive Autosport pilots. Turn 3 Motorsport and Force Indy each put a lone driver in the top ten.
- Sixteen of 23 drivers were within one second of Brooks, the fastest driver of the test. That compares similarly to the past two USF2000 spring training tests. Seventeen of 20 drivers were within one second of leader Prescott Campbell in 2019, and 13 of 18 drivers were within one second of leader Darren Keane in 2018.
- Jay Howard Driver Development and Cape Motorsports, whose drivers have won the last ten driver’s champions, were surprisingly missing from the top ten.
- The 23 USF2000 drivers combined to turn 2,725 laps of the 2.3-mile, 17-turn natural terrain road course. That equates to 6,267.5-miles.
- Joe Dooling Autosports rookie Trey Burke was the group’s busiest, completing 139 laps or 27.8 laps per session.
- Seven drivers turned more than 130 laps, while only two – veterans Brooks and Nolan Siegel (DEForce Racing), turned less than 100 laps.
Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship combined timesheet from spring training at Barber Motorsports Park
|RANK||CAR NO.||DRIVER||TEAM||SESSION||QUICK LAP||DIFF.||TOTAL LAPS|
|1||44||Christian Brooks||Exclusive Autosport||3||80.7981||97|
|2||11||Prescott Campbell||DEForce Racing||3||80.9386||-0.1405||116|
|3||10||Nolan Siegel||DEForce Racing||3||81.0929||-0.2948||90|
|4||33||Josh Green||Turn 3 Motorsport||4||81.2641||-0.466||106|
|5||12||Kiko Porto||DEForce Racing||3||81.3141||-0.516||107|
|6||24||Josh Pierson||Pabst Racing||3||81.3248||-0.5267||121|
|7||23||Jace Denmark||Pabst Racing||3||81.3891||-0.591||121|
|8||22||Yuven Sundaramoorthy||Pabst Racing||3||81.4300||-0.6319||121|
|9||91||Billy Frazer||Exclusive Autosport||3||81.4547||-0.6566||132|
|10||99||Myles Rowe||Force Indy||3||81.4773||-0.6792||113|
|11||5||Spike Kohlbecker||Cape Motorsports||3||81.4872||-0.6891||122|
|12||4||Michael d’Orlando||Cape Motorsports||3||81.5406||-0.7425||133|
|13||90||Grant Palmer||Exclusive Autosport||3||81.5938||-0.7957||133|
|14||34||Dylan Christie||Turn 3 Motorsports||3||81.5938||-0.7957||103|
|15||6||Bijoy Garg||Jay Howard Driver Development||3||81.7041||-0.906||109|
|16||1||Ely Navarro||DEForce Racing||3||81.7234||-0.9253||115|
|17||9||Peter Vodanovich||Jay Howard Driver Development||3||81.9157||-1.1176||132|
|18||8||Jackson Lee||Jay Howard Driver Development||3||82.0041||-1.206||134|
|19||29||Erik Evans||Velocity Racing Development||4||82.0346||-1.2365||120|
|20||3||Evan Stamer||Cape Motorsports||3||82.0362||-1.2381||132|
|21||2||Thomas Nepveu||Cape Motorsports||4||82.3165||-1.5184||115|
|22||16||Kent Vaccaro||Miller Vinatieri Motorsports||3||83.1678||-2.3697||114|
|23||63||Trey Burke||Joe Dooling Autosports||3||83.6030||-2.8049||139|
Averaging things out
Studying the combined timesheet and timesheets from individual sessions is only part of the story when predicting how a driver’s season could turn out.
With teams and drivers working on varying test programs across five one-hour test sessions, the outright pace isn’t always the goal. That is why it’s vital to average how a driver does across all five sessions.
TSO Ladder likes to drop the lowest finishing session when utilizing this method because teams work on different items in sessions or might skip a session due to limited tires.
Here are a few observations:
- The top eight drivers were extremely consistent, with only one of 32 possible placements in the sessions that we counted that was outside of the top ten.
- DEForce Racing veteran Nolan Siegel led the final session after finishing the other sessions in 5th, 3rd, 3rd, and 2nd.
- Lucas Oil Formula Championship Series champion and DEForce Racing rookie Ely Navarro was the only rookie driver that improved each time he took to the tracks. The 16-year-old who calls Fishers, Ind. home improved from the 20th to 19th, to 16th, to 13th, to 6th.
- Pabst Racing rookie Jace Denmark had the highest average of the 14 rookies. The 16-year-old was also the most consistent newcomer, finishing each session between fourth and sixth on the timesheet.
Average placement in spring training sessions (worst finish is dropped)
|1||44||Christian Brooks||Exclusive Autosport||1.8|
|2||10||Nolan Siegel||DEForce Racing||2.3|
|3||11||Prescott Campbell||DEForce Racing||3.8|
|4||33||Josh Green||Turn 3 Motorsport||4.5|
|5||24||Josh Pierson||Pabst Racing||5.0|
|6T||23||Jace Denmark – r||Pabst Racing||5.3|
|6T||12||Kiko Porto||DEForce Racing||5.3|
|8||22||Yuven Sundaramoorthy||Pabst Racing||5.8|
|9T||90||Grant Palmer – r||Exclusive Autosport||9.8|
|9T||29||Erik Evans – r||Velocity Racing Development||9.8|
|11T||34||Dylan Christie – r||Turn 3 Motorsport||10.3|
|11T||91||Billy Frazer – r||Exclusive Autosport||10.3|
|13||99||Myles Rowe – r||Force Indy||10.5|
|14||4||Michael d’Orlando||Cape Motorsports||11.3|
|15||5||Spike Kohlbecker – r||Cape Motorsports||12.5|
|16||1||Ely Navarro – r||DEForce Racing||13.5|
|17||8||Jackson Lee – r||Jay Howard Driver Development||13.8|
|18||6||Bijoy Garg||Jay Howard Driver Development||14.0|
|19||9||Peter Vodanovich – r||Jay Howard Driver Development||15.0|
|20||2||Thomas Nepveu – r||Cape Motorsports||16.5|
|21||3||Evan Stamer – r||Cape Motorsports||18.3|
|22||16||Kent Vaccaro – r||Miller Vinatieri Motorsports||20.5|
|23||63||Trey Burke – r||Joe Dooling Autosports||21.5|
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