NASA Southeast ran the “Race for Pi” March 12 and 13 at Road Atlanta. It was a crossover event with the Mid-Atlantic and Florida Regions joining the Southeast regulars. The paddock so full it would have been difficult to squeeze in another truck and trailer. NASA Southeast officials not only had the paddock full of drivers from three regions, but Road Atlanta’s mowing crew had somehow damaged the scoring loop and no one was aware until Saturday morning. Jim and Julie Pantas along with a score of great workers kept things going, diagnosed the problem and managed to get it repaired without the loss of much track time. They did a terrific job under trying circumstances.
The scoring loop problem pushed qualifying back until after lunch. The three race groups qualified back to back with the Tornado race group going out first. Mike Brooks took the pole in Thunder Roadster with a 1:38.344, followed closely by Will Miller and Ralph Nolan.
Thirteen Thunder Roadsters took the green flag. Immediately the top five cars pulled away from the rest of the field. Ralph Nolan moved from a fifth starting spot to lead the first lap. Mike Brooks, Will Miller, Scott Lanford and Kevin Mewborn were swapping positions at nearly every corner. Scott Lanford drafted with Will Miller down the back straight to lead the next three laps and lead the most consecutive laps of anyone in the entire race. It seemed that leading coming out of Turn 7 was not the place to be. During the entire race, Lanford was able to maintain a lead from Turn 7 to the finish line and he could not do it more than two laps.
Mike Brooks and Will Miller also led a few laps. On the final lap, Kevin Mewborn made an exceptional pass in Turn 6 and got by Will Miller, Scott Lanford and Ralph Nolan. He was nose to tail with the leader Mike Brooks down the back straight. Kevin used the crossover move in 10A and 10B to be side by side with Mike Brooks coming through Turn 12 to the checkers. Brooks dropped the left tires off the gators in Turn 12 and Mewborn pulled slightly ahead to win by .227 seconds at the line. It was Kevin Mewborn’s second career win. Congratulations to Mewborn on a fine performance. Scott Lanford finished third and Will Miller fourth.
Sunday morning was raining and cloudy. The Thunder Roadsters decided not to qualify and start the race in Saturday’s finishing order. While the race wasn’t as close, there were still some great battles between competitors. Will Miller took the win followed by Mike Brooks, Scott Lanford and Brad Woods.