AI West Race Report - Infineon Raceway, June 2003
Round Four of the American Iron West Championship Series took place at Infineon Raceway on June 28-29, 2003. The racers arrived in the middle of a heat wave that saw temperatures soaring to over 100 degrees during Friday's practice session.
Saturday morning saw a slight drop in the mercury, but it was still hot. Griggs (AIX) and Cunningham (AI) got the lead from the standing start, followed by Karas (AI) and Lindsey in his AIX MM-equipped number 22. Newcomer Terry Buch, in his beautiful Total Control Products 1965 Mustang, slipped into 5th, followed by the rest of the field. Buch, an exhibition entry, was debuting a new line of suspension components for 1964-72 Mustangs that are not yet legal for AI or AIX. The field held their positions for most of the race, with an epic battle between Buch and Lindsey. On the last lap Lindsey made a last attempt to pass in Turn 11, but Buch managed to hold off the pass and keep Lindsey behind. Lindsey's hard charging 2nd place AIX finish netted him Saturday's fastest AIX race lap of 1:51:932. It was a real crowd pleaser to see different generation Mustangs going head to head on the track!
Sunday morning dawned twenty degrees cooler than Friday, much to the relief of fans, drivers, and crews alike. This time, co-driver Tim Nichols took the wheel of the MM equipped #22. Tim, never having raced at Infineon, qualified far behind the veteran Infineon drivers. The field managed a clean standing start, and took off in a haze of tire smoke and clutch dust. Griggs pulled out to an early lead, with Mashouf just behind. Buch, using his Kumho Victoracer's cold sprint ability charged right through the field to take 2nd place. After Nichols warmed his Hoosiers and found the rhythm of the new track he set some amazingly fast lap times. Within 10 laps, Nichols moved from 16 seconds out of first up to only 3 seconds behind the leader. While charging for the lead, Nichols set the record lap time of the weekend at 1:49.046. Just inches from overtaking Buch, Nichols' bid for the top spot was cut short when sudden ignition problems caused the engine to misfire above 4500 RPM. Forced to slow, Nichols was soon passed by Mashouf. The AIX finishing order was Griggs, Buch, Mashouf, and Nichols.
Sunday's AI race saw Videtto and Chambers battling for the lead. After swapping positions many times and fighting for every corner, Videtto emerged the victor. Chambers came home in second, with Tim Gilpin of Brother's Performance taking 3rd place in his MM-equipped 1994 Mustang.
Rides and more
Between track sessions, members of the MM crew helped our racing customers tune their suspensions. Other customers stopped by to visit, look over the suspension of the number 22 AIX car, and ask questions. A lucky few were taken for a ride around Infineon Raceway by Jack Hidley in HPDE Group 4. Jack's ride is his 1987 Mustang that he co-drove with AI East champion Bryan Shugg to a second-in-class finish in the 2003 Open track Challenge.