Hot Temperatures and Intense Racing at Road Atlanta’s Summer Sizzle

“Hotlanta” lived up to its name during the Spec MX-5 Challenge Series stop at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta for the 2022 Summer Sizzle hosted by the Tennessee Valley Region SCCA. With temperatures hitting the 90’s both days, the action was just as hot on the track as our North & South Region racers fought for position.

Jillian Fichter debuted in her first Spec MX-5 Challenge race last weekend. Credit Ed Dombrowski

Donald Squirek broke his streak of P2 qualifying grid places by landing on pole position Saturday after laying down a flyer early in the shortened qualifying session. As soon as the green flag dropped for Saturday’s race, it was an intense battle for first place with Squirek, Grant West, Jarrett Jones, and eventual race winner Alex Berg all in first at one time or another. Jones took second place while West took third, setting a new SMX track record of 1:41.417 along the way.

Saturday’s race podium finishers: Grant West, Alex Berg, and Jarrett Jones

Sunday’s race brought more heat and even tighter racing. Lap after lap, the top seven cars in the class stayed in a pack of close, clean racing. Squirek was able to hold off West for the first seven laps, but West held the lead for the next three laps, with Squirek trading spots with him one last time before the last four laps of the race. Keeping Berg at bay was no easy task as he marched from sixth to second, but traffic was on West’s side for the race’s penultimate laps. Final results saw West on the top step, with Berg and Jones rounding out the podium.

Grant West crosses the line first during Sunday’s race
Don Squirek with names of his donor’s to his Multiple Sclerosis cause on his hood
Jillian Fichter’s #12 Spec MX-5
Our Spec MX-5s on the grid
Great view of Grant West’s #51
Saturday’s winner, Alex Berg
Jerrett Jones and his Second Place trophy
Grant West was 3rd on Saturday, setting a Spec MX-5 Road Atlanta lap record in the process

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