John Dean and Sick Sideways leave Sebring with the Idemitsu Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich® Tires points lead.
Just like last year, hometown favorite John Dean missed out on victory in the opening race at Sebring, but made up for it with the second. Dean took home the win in Round Two of the SCCA Pro Racing Idemitsu Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich® Tires at Sebring International Raceway, part of the 63rd Annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida. Patrick Gallagher, of Thornville, Ohio, finished in second, followed by Nathanial Sparks, of Spanish Fort, Alabama.
At the controls of his No. 16 Bulb Jacket/PPG MX-5, Dean captured his ninth career win, becoming the winningest driver in series history. Starting in eighth, Dean found his way to the front in the opening laps of the race and battled with Gallagher for the lead at the 17-turn, 3.74-mile permanent road course. In the end, the race was decided on the last corner of a two-lap shootout following a full-course yellow flag. Additionally, Dean also won the Idemitsu Hard Charger Award after improving seven positions.
Gallagher, in the No. 44 Howard Concrete Pumping MX-5, was the official leader for five laps of the 17-lap race. He was unable to hold off Dean on the last lap, and finished the two-race event with a pair of podium finishes.
Sparks started Round Two in third, in his No. 8 OOTSK Performance/Sick Sideways MX-5, and was able to hold station to finish in the same position in a wild race.
Dean Copeland, of Bowie, Maryland, finished fourth for the second time in as many races at the wheel of this No. 7 Copeland Motorsports/Sync Speed Inc. MX-5. Staring in 11th, Copeland had gotten up to third by lap six and was in the mix of the lead pack for the remainder of the race.
Sebastian Landy, of Great Falls, Virginia, drove the wheels off of his No. 49 Mercury/Atlanta Motorsport Group MX-5 to finish fifth.
In the Skip Barber MAZDASPEED Pro Challenge, Sam Adams, of Richfield, Wisconsin, notched his first win of the young season. He relied on solid and consistent laps to put him in a position to win at the end.
The next stop for the SCCA Pro Racing Idemitsu Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich® Tires is scheduled for April 10-12 at NOLA Motorsports Park, as part of the Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana. With a second and a first at Sebring, Dean will go into that race as the points leader.