Nearburg Completes Masters Historic Formula One Event Sweep at Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion; Maydon Holds Off Lauber to Sweep Fittipaldi Class
Two exhilarating weeks of Masters Historic Formula One racing at Central California’s world-renowned WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca circuit came to a conclusion with Charles Nearburg winning the Rolex Race and thus sweeping the weekend at the prestigious Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion.
Nearburg led from the first turn until the cars finished lap 9 under double yellow following the No. 29 car’s spin into the gravel going down the Corkscrew. Nearburg turned a series of 1:21 lap times while his nearest opposition — Gregory Thornton taking his second P2 finish of the day — was the only other driver recording sub-1:23 times. Cal Meeker followed to take the third step of the podium for the second time today.
"The guys did a great job on the cars," said Nearburg. "They had to rebuild the metering unit on the fuel injection between the first race and this one, so they busted their tails to make the car a runner this afternoon. Hats off to Kevin and all the guys. It was a beautiful day at the track. It was great to see fans here again. The cars ran great. I drove hard. It was fun, but I didn’t take anything for granted. It’s a day to remember, for sure."
Wade Carter and Bud Moeller, who so valiantly worked their way up to the fourth and fifth positions from the back of the grid during the Monterey Race earlier in the afternoon, retained their positions through the duration of the Rolex Race with Lee Mowle close behind in sixth.
The most hotly-contested battle while the race was still under green was between Ron Maydon and Martin Lauber for the seventh overall spot which also determined the victor in the Fittipaldi class. Maydon held on with Lauber stalking him in the No. 33 1981 Tyrrell that he is driving for the first time this weekend after selling his familiar No. 9 Jaegermeister 1974 March to Richard Griot. Lauber was hot on Maydon’s tail under the double-yellow flags waved and Maydon collected his second Fittipaldi class win in as many races today.
"Let me tell you: when the double yellows came out, I was the happiest man on the planet. My only concern was that they were going to get the car cleared and start the race again," said Maydon, with a laugh. “I was relieved. It was good. I really enjoyed it. There is a nice bunch of drivers. We all race each other hard but slap each other on the back at the end of the day."
"I ran out of time, and the talent didn't kick in soon enough," said Lauber. "I'm getting used to the car. I wish we had one more weekend to go."
The other driver who was hopeful for a couple more laps under green was Danny Baker. Baker, starting in the rear of the grid after a broken throttle cable derailed his earlier race, smoothly overtook driver after driver in his McLaren M23 until time under green ran out with ninth-place Chris Locke and others in his sights.
"I wish we had three more laps," said Baker. "I had four guys all lined up in front of me. I was like, 'OK, let’s go, baby!' The car ran good. It was good to have a throttle pedal this time."
Tenth-place Baker was followed to the checkered flag by Chris MacAllister, Dalmo deVasconcelos, Doug Mockett, Michael Eckstein, Charles Warner, Griot, Michael Malone, Stewart class winner Alex MacAllister, and John McKenna.
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