2011 Skip Barber Alumni Year in Review After 36 years of training champions, Skip Barber Racing School has wrapped up another successful and exciting race season. Skip Barber Racing School alumni and graduates raced in virtually every race series, topping the charts and dominating the podiums. Here are just some of the end of the year highlights.
Cooper Tires Presents the USF2000 National Championship Powered by Mazda
After six wins and twelve podium finishes, 2011 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National presented by Mazda champion Scott Anderson received scholarship funds to advance to Cooper Tires Presents the USF2000 National Championship Powered by Mazda. Anderson will be racing the 2012 season with Belardi Auto Racing. The 2011 Skip Barber Formula Summer Series Rookie of the Year, Scott Hargrove will join JDC MotorSports for the 2012 race season. 2010 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National presented by Mazda Champion Spencer Pigot finished second in the 2011 USF2000 championship, just 47 points behind Petri Suvanto. Pigot will return to compete in the USF2000 Championship for the 2012 season with Wayne Taylor Racing. Skip Barber Racing School Race Series alumnus Matthew Di Leo rounded out the top five in the championship point standings. Skip Barber National alumnus Thomas McGregor will join Andretti Autosport to compete in the 2012 season of the USF2000 Championship. Skip Barber Racing School graduate Shannon McIntosh signed with TrueCar Racing for 2012 after finishing eighth in the 2011 championship.
Star Mazda Championship Presented by Goodyear
2009 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National presented by Mazda Champion Connor De Philippi finished second in the 2011 Star Mazda Championship Presented by Goodyear with 2008 Skip Barber Karting Scholarship Shootout winners Nick Andries and Sage Karam finishing third and fifth. Karam also received the Rookie of the Year title and has signed to compete in the 2012 season with Andretti Autosport. Skip Barber Racing School alumnus, and winningest driver in CART history, Michael Andretti acts as Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of the race team. Skip Barber National alumni Ashley Freiberg also signed with TrueCar Racing for the 2012 Star Mazda season, as a part of the team’s “Women Empowered” initiative.
Firestone Indy Lights
Skip Barber Racing School Race Series alumnus Josef Newgarden clinched the 2011 Firestone Indy Lights championship with Sam Schmidt Motorsports. Newgarden has just signed a three year contract with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing in the IZOD IndyCar Series, a team operated by another Skip Barber alumnus, Sarah Fisher. 2008 Skip Barber National Champion Conor Daly competed in both the Firestone Indy Lights and GP3 Championship, and hopes to compete again in the GP3 season for 2012.
IZOD IndyCar Series
Four Skip Barber Racing School alumni landed in the top ten in the final championship points standings: Tony Kanaan (fifth), Ryan Hunter-Reay (seventh), Marco Andretti (eighth) and Danica Patrick (tenth). Patrick recently announced she will be leaving IndyCar to run the 2012 season in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. In May, 1991 Barber Pro Series champion Bryan Herta, co-owner of Bryan Herta Autosport, celebrated winning the95th Indianapolis 500 with the late Dan Wheldon driving.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Jeff Gordon finished eighth in the season standings and was chosen as NASCAR Illustrated’s Person of the Year. AJ Allmendinger has signed with Penske Racing, driving the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Dodge in the Sprint Cup, replacing Kurt Busch.
2007 Skip Barber Southern Series Champion Gabby Chaves competed in GP3 this season, finishing 18th, earning five top 10 finishes and was also selected for FIA Institute Young Driver Excellence Academy. Chaves is hoping to return to GP3 Series or move to the Auto GP Championship.
Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0
After spending the race season in Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 Series with Fortec Motorsports, Skip Barber Karting Scholarship Shootout winner Felix Serralles finished 12th with five top ten finishes. Next up on the young racer’s calendar is the Toyota Racing Series kick off in Auckland, New Zealand.
Formula Renault UK
2011 BFGoodrich/Skip Barber National presented by Mazda competitor Franco Aragones will join Escuderia Telmex for the 2012 Formula Renault UK season.
F3 Euro Series
Skip Barber Racing School Race Series alumnus Gianmarco Raimondo finished 11th in the F3 Euro Series with 17 top ten finishes.
World Series by Renault
After earning two wins and seven podiums, Skip Barber National alumnus Alexander Rossi finished third overall in the 2011 World Series by Renault. Rossi then traveled to the ‘Yas Marina Circuit for a successful F1 test with Team Lotus.
SCCA Pro Racing World Challenge
Skip Barber Formula Dodge alum Patrick Long clinched the SCCA Pro Racing World Challenge title in the GT class driving the No. 45 Privacy Star/TruSpeed Porsche 911 GT3.
Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge
Skip Barber Racing School Race Series alumnus John Edwards earned two wins and finished seventh in the series standings with co-driver Matt Bell with the Stevenson Motorsports Camaro GS. The Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Rookie of the Year will return to race with Stevenson Motorsports in 2012, in both the GS and GT Grand-Am Series. Finishing eighth in the standings was Bill Auberlen with Turner Motorsport, in ninth was Skip Barber Master Al Carter with Fall-Line Motorsports. Skip Barber Racing School MAZDASPEED Challenge alum Tyler Cooke signed with Freedom Autosport for the 2012 season.
GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series
Racing with SunTrust Racing, Skip Barber National alumnus Ricky Taylor finished third in the series Daytona Prototype standings. With teammate Max Angelelli, the duo earned six pole positions and three wins in the 2011 season. Brother Jordan Taylor finished third in the Grand Touring standings with Autohaus Motorsports, followed by Jonathan Bomarito with SpeedSource. Andy Lally recently announced he will compete with Magnus Racing for the 2012 season. Lally won in the GF class last year at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona, and will return to uphold his title. Spencer Pumpelly has signed on to compete with TRG in a 2012 Porsche 911 GT3.
Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Series
The 2011 Skip Barber Formula Summer Series Champion Tristan Nunez will join Performance Tech Motorsports for the full 2012 race season.
American Le Mans Series Presented by Tequila Patron
Bill Auberlen finished third in the American Le Mans Series Presented by Tequila Patron GT drivers’ standings, with fellow alum Bryan Sellers in fifth and Scott Sharp in seventh.
Volkswagen Scirocco R Cup
After ten rounds, Skip Barber National alumnus Daniel Lloyd earned third place in the Volkswagen Scirocco R Cup championship standings and won a 2012 Porsche Carrera Cup GB Scholarship. Fellow Skip Barber National alum Dennis Trebing finished second in the Junior Cup and plans to continue racing in Europe and move up Pro Level in the Volkswagen Motorsports Scirocco R-Cup.
Three-time Skip Barber Race Series champion Revere Greist clinched his first Formula Continental National title in September. Race Series alumni Spencer Pigot and Trent Hindman and Skip Barber Racing School graduate Neil Alberico were each selected as the Team USA Scholarship Winners. In the Walter Hayes Trophy event at Silverstone, both racers finished fourth in their respective races and Hindman placed sixth in the Grand Final. A new generation of racers started the 2011-2012 Skip Barber presents the Mazda Winter Series for Formula Skip Barber and MAZDASPEED Challenge. Follow the future champions on twitter at twitter.com/raceskipbarber.