2014 Sebring Opener Series comes off 49-car opener at Sebring with 50 car entry for Homestead
As the Trans Am Series heads south to Homestead-Miami for Round 2 of the 2014 Trans Am Championship, it brings with it all the momentum and vigor of an outstanding 2014 Season Opener.
It was a show unlike any other in recent Trans Am history, with car counts unseen in Trans Am since the early 1980’s and 25 Trans Am rookies plying their trade in America’s Road Racing Series. Now, that show will go on at Homestead-Miami Speedway at the Miami Historics in conjunction with SVRA, the Sports Car Vintage Racing Association.
This will be Trans Am’s first appearance at Homestead-Miami since 1998, and it brings with it a far different Series than was on display during its last performance.
The giant grand touring cars remain, now in the TA class, still the pinnacle of North American grand touring, each powered by 875 horsepower V8s. But two other classes, TA2 and TA3, now join them in the creation of a multi-class Series that is well on its way back to the road racing spotlight.
For TA2, Homestead-Miami will be a special occasion, as it will feature the first independent race for the class. Usually TA, TA2 and TA3 all race together, but this weekend TA2 will have its own show as a mixture of Ford Mustangs and Chevrolet Camaros take to the track in a showcase of America’s beloved Detroit-built icons.
TA3 now stands as Trans Am’s production-based class, harkening back to the early days of Trans Am when production racing reigned supreme. It features two groups, the American Muscle Group and the International Group. In American Muscle, icons like the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro and Dodge Challenger are pitted against each other, while the International Group showcases high performance production from around the world—Dodge Vipers to Porsches.
Trans Am’s Champions experienced a successful outing during Round One; as both TA Champion Doug Peterson, in the #87 3Dimensional.com Chevrolet Corvette, and TA2 Champion Cameron Lawrence, in the #1 Trick Titanium Chevrolet Corvette, both opened their title defense with victories at Sebring.
“I’m looking forward to Homestead-Miami,” said Doug Peterson. “I’ve got a ton of track time out there and I know Tony (Ave) will give me a great car for the weekend with a great setup—we’ll do our best to recreate the result from Sebring.”
Lawrence, like Peterson, is based in Florida and also has plenty of time on the track at Homestead-Miami.
“I love seeing the increase in competition,” said Lawrence. “It drives us all to become better drivers and makes for great racing. We’ll address Homestead-Miami like we do every other race, with a focus on running hard and running clean.”
In TA3, Dean Martin, in the #52 Rehagen Racing Ford Mustang, is coming off his first ever Trans Am appearance and American Muscle victory. However, he’ll be faced with a stern challenge from Ernie Francis, Jr., in the #9 Breathless Performance Chevrolet Camaro, who finished less than a car length behind Martin and his #52.
Trans Am will first take to the track Friday for practice at 11:35 a.m. EST, followed by a second practice later that afternoon at 4:15 p.m. Trans Am will have three separate qualifying sessions on Saturday. The first class to qualify will be TA at 11:25 a.m., followed by TA2 at 12:45 p.m. and TA3 at 1:15 p.m.
Trans Am will open Sunday celebrations with the TA2 race at 1:30 p.m. EDT, followed by the TA and TA3 race at 2:50 p.m. EDT.