Jayson Woodruff won Stock - Rear Wheel Drive at the SCCA RallyCross National Championship in Tulsa, Okla. Photo by Rupert Berrington

Miata Drivers Win SCCA RallyCross Titles

The Miata isn’t typically the sort of car one pictures tearing around in a dirt-and-grass field in Oklahoma. Yet several drivers did exactly that and two of them claimed RallyCross National Championships in the process.

The Sports Car Club of America had its final championship event of 2013 with the RallyCross National Championship at Tulsa Raceway Park on Oct. 5-6. Attracting more than 100 drivers, several in Miatas and RX-7s (plus a Mazda2, a Protégé and a GLC), the event crowned nine winners based on their aggregate times in 10 runs around the pylon-marked course.

RallyCross is much like Solo, also called autocross, in that competitors compete for time around a course marked by pylons. The chief differences are that RallyCrosses take place on grass, dirt, snow or ice instead of pavement; and that the cumulative time for all runs, rather than the time of the best run, determines the winner. There are nine classes: a Stock, Prepared and Modified class for each style of drivetrain – front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive.

An inch of rain on Friday night delayed the start on Saturday morning and the slippery conditions that followed really separated the drivers at the top of their game from the rest. Stock was the first group out, and Jayson Woodruff in his Stock-Rear Wheel Drive class Miata showed that he was one of those with the skills early on. Most of the Huntington Beach, Calif., driver’s early runs were a full second quicker than his competitors, including fellow Miata driver Patrick Matecki of Colorado Springs, Colo. Woodruff’s winning total time in his JayCom Services Miata was 16 seconds quicker than Matecki at the end of the event.

©Rupert Berrington
Sam and Martin Henry co-drove this Miata, with Sam winning the Prepared – Rear Wheel Drive class. Photo by Rupert Berrington

Brothers Sam and Martin Henry co-drove in the Prepared – Rear Wheel Drive class and were battling among themselves in their Springfield Dyno/SafeRacer Miata. Sam, of Republic, Mo., came out on top of his Claremore, Okla.-based brother for the National Championship.

It was almost a Miata sweep in the Rear Wheel Drive category, as Evan Arthur led the Modified class after Saturday. However, he fell short by a mere 1.896 seconds to Michael Cadwell after the final runs.

Arthur, of Columbus, Ohio, was still eligible for Mazda’s contingency money. Mazda North American Operations, the Official Car of SCCA, will award eligible National Champions $750, with $500 and $250 going to podium finishers.