By Justin Laxton
The off-season is over for the Lionheart IndyCar Series presented by Overdrive Graphics. Opening night is tonight with the season opening Overdrive Graphics 200 from the Homestead Miami Speedway, live on the Global SimRacing Channel.
This season, the league has gone to a paid format, with each of the 49 registered drivers paying a $20 entry fee to compete over the fully sponsored 18 race schedule. With over $1,000 in cash and prizes available to drivers throughout the season, this season promises to be the best yet.
In last night’s final practice race, Unacceptable Racing’s James Krahula used pit strategy and a well timed caution to capture the victory over No Name Racing’s Jake Wright, and Chris Stofer. Tommy Rhyne and Rick Music rounded out the top 5.
It was a rough night for series veterans, with Rick Music the top running returning driver. Last season’s championship runner Joe Hassert finishing 19th, and last season’s third place driver, Justin Laxton, finishing 17th after leading 39 laps.
In two lap qualifying immediately prior to the start of the practice race, Jake Wright turned the fastest lap with a time of 25.080. Justin Laxton qualified second, with Tony Showen qualifying third.
Looking ahead to Wednesday night’s race, certainly Krahula, Wright, and Laxton will be drivers to watch. Other drivers to watch include:
Joe Hassert: In the off-season, “Big Joe” has won just about every race the Lionheart IndyCar Series has run, including the series All-Star Race from Indianapolis, and the Pre-Season Thunder from Homestead. Big Joe is also the defending race champion, and he and his fellow No Name Racing teammates will be looking to find victory lane.
Chris Stofer: A newcomer to the series, Stofer turned heads last night with his third place finish that included leading one lap. Can the newcomer find victory lane in his first points race?
Rick Music: Music lead 18 laps and showed that he was a contender. Music lead laps in the last race at Homestead, and was strong all race long. He is currently on a 16 race winless streak in Lionheart competition, a streak he will be looking to break.
Sleeper Pick: Jonathan Goke: Goke has been away from iRacing testing Star Mazda’s at Laguna Seca for the past six months. Unfortunately all of that seat time won’t help him much at Homestead. He’s a member of Deadzone Racing along with Ryan Lowe, Sam Adams, and Allen Boes. Goke will be looking to make a big splash in his return to the series!
Race coverage on the Global SimRacing Channel gets under way at 10:40pm EST and can be viewed here.
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