Racing Blog and Press

2023 Crossflow Cup Final Weekend at Laps for Laguna

October 15th, 2023

October 13-15, 2023 Historic Formula Ford Championship and Top Gun Shootout!

Laps for Laguna; Art and Kevin were both out at Weathertec Raceway for the CSRG event.
Art was on the track in the yellow Titan Formula Ford in the final two races of the Crossflow Cup championship, and the ‘Top Gun’ extra Formula Ford race on Sunday.
Kevin raced the black and red Apache Sports 2000 in the commonly called “Wings and Slicks” group -a mixed-class group that contained primarily Formula Atlantic cars, Sports 2000, and an incredible Mario Andretti Lotus Formula 1 car.

“We arrived to gorgeous fall weather at Laps for Laguna. Kevin and I both tested on Friday and continued to work on getting quicker.

For me this was the final Cross Flow Cup race of the season. The Historic Formula Ford Championship was on the line. There were four contenders, Andrew Wait, Martin Lauber, Steve Romak, and me. 

Andrew ran in the front pack for both races and became the 2023 Cross Flow Cup Champion! Martin turned in excellent performances in both races and claimed second spot in the Championship. He was also the MC for the Saturday night fundraiser dinner at the track with Colton and Bryan Herta. Well done!

Steve Romak and I battled for third. During the first race Steve and I slid side-by-side through the entire famous Laguna Seca Corkscrew. At the finish Steve crossed the line just 6/100’s of a second ahead of me, putting him squarely into third spot in the Championship. We both exchanged thumbs up and big grins during the cool off lap. 

Unfortunately we did not get a chance to go head-to-head in the second race. Steve got taken out by another car during qualifying for the second race. That provided me the opportunity to gain enough points by finishing 4th in Historic Formula Ford in the second race to claim the final podium spot in the Historic Formula Ford Championship. 

The final race of the weekend was the “Top Gun Shootout”. Participants included 2023 season race winners, pole position holders, and those who passed the most cars during races. Danny Baker came home first followed by Brian Swanson and Oliver Ramleth, both of whom made major strides during the season. We wound up fourth and were honored just to be a part of the group.

All of us Cross Flow Cup competitors are now looking forward to the Cross Flow Cup Awards dinner in December at Shippert Racing Services. We will enjoy great food, great stories, and great camaraderie. That, and great racing, is what the Cross Flow Cup is all about.” – Art

“It was such a great sight to see when our fellow S2 competitor Steve Hoogs showed up to play. It made for great back-and-forth battles between us which apparently became the talk of the sessions with the track announcer. It was great fun with each of us going home with a class win. It was an excellent way to end the season for us and we cannot wait to tackle the track in 2024.” – Kevin


For more details on the weekend check out the Crossflow Cup Season Finale & Top Gun Shootout Report!

 


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2023 Crossflow Cup Weekend Two at Thunderhill with SCCA

June 5th, 2023

June 2-4, 2023  Battle at Thunderhill!

The second round of the Crossflow Cup Championship was held at Thunderhill Raceway Park, sanctioned by the SCCA and run in conjunction with their event the same weekend. 30 Formula Fords made up our grid. We were pitted, along with several FF’s, under the new awning in the paddock. That was fabulous as track temperatures would later climb to 140 degrees. 

In qualifying for the first race we made it onto the front row. Bob Lesnett in his Crossle had too much speed for us and claimed the top spot. Andrew Wait and Steve Romak were right behind us. The start began with a green flag shortly followed by a yellow flag. Some saw the green while others then saw the yellow. That resulted in a confused restart with me pulling several car lengths ahead of Bob and the rest as we took the second green flag. It would not matter anyway as both Bob and Andrew would soon gobble me up and easily go by. We were able to hang onto 3rd place (2nd in Historic Formula Ford) by the skin of our teeth as Steve Romak drafted me down the straight and was virtually side-by-side with our Titan at the finish line. I was so focused on Steve gaining on me that I did not notice that Andrew had pulled the same move on Bob, and drafted by him by mere thousandths of a second to claim first overall with Bob first in Club Ford. 

Sunday morning I did some setup changes to the car to try and catch Bob and Andrew, and to try and stay ahead of Nick Colyvas and fast and getting faster Club Ford man, Brian Swanson. Unfortunately, Steve Romak would miss Sunday’s race to attend a graduation event, as would Martin Lauber. Fortunately for Andrew and myself, my daughter and usual crew chief, Lindsey, and Andrew’s son, Harry, would graduate the following week from Redwood High School, so we could sneak in the Thunderhill race.

We again qualified on the front row, this time behind Andrew. Poor Bob had fuel pick up problems and would have to start way down the order for the race. That would prove to be very entertaining. Bob would climb from 21st all the way to 7th overall and 3rd in Club Ford at the finish, behind Brian Swanson and Neil Porter. Well done guys!

When the green flag came out, and thankfully this time it stayed out, Andrew pulled away from the rest of us. Typical of Formula Ford racing though, Andrew could gap the rest of us by a few car lengths but couldn’t totally get away. With the rest of us running in a pack we were able to reel him in at about mid point. From then on it was wheel-to-wheel racing, side-by-side, slingshot and re-slingshot, and many lead changes. 

Like in the old days of NASCAR, second place seemed to be the best spot to be in on the last lap. That way you could draft and try one last desperate lunge for the finish line while the leader tried to push their gas pedal through the floor. With one lap to go, I had a good draft down the straight behind Andrew. I could tuck in behind him into turn 1 and hope for the best drafting him down the final straight, or I could go for it now and try to hold him off for the rest of the lap. I was not disciplined enough to hold back so I went for it into turn 1. 

Andrew gave me room down the inside, but what he was really doing was setting me up for an over-under move, coming up the inside of me at the exit and trying to retake the lead down the inside for turn 2. He had done that to me earlier in the race and this time I was just able to hold onto the car enough to block that move. He then chased me for the rest of the lap and closed the gap to near zero going into the final turn.

Fortunately for me, Andrew caught me so quickly going into the last corner that he had to back off just a fraction to not tag my gearbox. Every little bit helped. As we exited the corner and headed onto one of the longest straights of my life, his red Titan just got bigger and bigger in my mirrors, and I pushed my gas pedal harder and harder. I also kept flicking my head back and forth searching for Andrew in my mirrors and waiting for his inevitable move. 

The finish line at Thunderhill is beyond the starter’s flag. Beware celebrating at the checkered flag and backing off at the starter’s stand only to watch the eventual winner pass a few yards later for the actual victory. As I squinted my eyes I could no longer see Andrew behind me. That meant he could only be coming alongside me, and with more speed than what I had. But how much? How soon?

We flashed across the finish line separated by thousandths of a second. I never saw his nose ahead of mine. Yes! a quick fist clench in the cockpit, and a salutatory wave to my all-too-worthy adversary.  Somehow this time we held on. If the race was one lap longer, or one lap shorter, the roles would have been reversed, and probably the results too. 

This is Formula Ford racing at its finest – great competitors, great racing, great people, and great fun. When Andrew and I exited our cars in the paddock we were both laughing, smiling, hugging, and agreeing that this was probably the greatest race of our lives… until the next one… :)” – Art

For more details about the weekend, check out the July issue of ‘The Wheel’, with Crossflow Cup on the cover and Group 8 at Thunderhill featured on page 32!

 

 


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2023 David Love CSRG Season Opener

March 26th, 2023

The David Love Memorial Races, March 24-26, 2023, season opener for CSRG Racing!

Saturday: Art finished third place in Historic Formula Ford, and grabbed fastest lap of the race. It was a battle at the front, with Martin Lauber beating our Picchio teammate Andrew Wait by just 6/100ths of a second for the win!

Sunday: Art came in second overall in the Crossflow Cup Formula Ford race, and fourth in the Porsche.

Gunnar also had an epic race in the Porsche 356 – beating his previous best lap time by 4 seconds.

We had some Stanford mechanical engineering students join us for the vintage racing weekend – the engineer’s feedback resulted in a chassis change that moved us up from 5th on the grid Saturday to our 2nd overall on Sunday.

As always, thanks to the Sonoma Raceway crew, and congrats to everyone for a great weekend of racing!

Check out a full race report of the Sonoma Season Opener on the Crossflow Cup blog: https://www.norwestff.com/new-blog


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2022 Charity Challenge Crossflow Cup

October 6th, 2022

https://www.norwestff.com/points-standings
9/30-10/2 at Sonoma Raceway, Art was on the track in:
Group 2: Don’s Porsche 356
Group 5: Lola Formula Junior (silver)
Group 6 : Titan Formula Ford (yellow)

Don drove his 1957 Porsche 356 Super to the track, the Porsche partook in 3 lap passenger rides to raise money with Speedway Charities.
Check out a great recap of the weekend “Sonoma Race Report & Crowning The 2022 Champions” by Crossflow Cup: https://www.norwestff.com/new-blog

Race 1: What was shaping up for a heck of a donnybrook for the top spot ended up going the other direction as “Steamroller” Steve Romak went flag to flag leading every lap to take his first win of a strong season. Behind him though, it was a mosh pit. 6th place starter (and points leader) Martin Lauber was on a mission to score as many points to add to his tally as possible on his march to 2nd place, fighting his way through the scrum of usual suspects. Andrew Wait struggled with front end grip after a hard opening salvo overheated his front tires, and Art Hebert finished where he started in 4th place.”

Race 2: As the final green flag of the season waved, the field went 3 and 4 wide up the hill and under the walkover bridge. Polesitter Wait chose the right side of the road giving him the inside heading into T2, whereby he took the point and attempted to run as easy a pace as he could to keep his front tires under him. Baker ran in P2 early on with Heil behind, but Hebert was able to move past both of them and sit with Wait clear to the finish.

Martin Lauber drove a smart race and took home 4th place points, which was enough to seal his first ever Crossflow Cup championship, while Wait came home on the top step of the HF podium, flanked by Hebert and Baker.”

Congrats and thank you to everyone for a great weekend of racing!

My race weekend was predictably chaotic. So what’s new? My 90 year old father-in-law, Don Sandy, and I worked on getting our 1963 Lola Formula Junior, 1970 Titan Formula Ford, and 1957 356 Porsche to Sonoma Raceway and out to practice on Friday. My cousins Kevin, Cathy, and Colin, son Gunnar, and daughter Lindsey, came for the weekend to provide badly needed support. 

We had a persistent misfire with the Titan on Friday. On Saturday, with help from Jay Ivey, and the discovery of a loose coil wire, we resolved our misfire problem in the nick of time for qualifying. We were thrilled to make the top five.  Everyone has gotten so good in the Crossflow Cup! 

Saturday’s Crossflow Cup Formula Ford race saw future champion, Martin Lauber, drive around the OUTSIDE of me in turn 2 headed for the front. Steve Romak was so far ahead in first place that I never saw him after a few laps. After a fun battle with Danny Baker, I managed fourth place, nearly side-by-side with Andrew Wait at the finish, with Kelly, “jelly man“, Heil, right on top of me in 5th, and first of the Club Fords. (more…)


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2022 Lime Rock Park Historic Festival

September 5th, 2022

Art joined the Donovan Motorsports Team at the labor day weekend 2022 Lime Rock Historic Festival.

In race one the E-Type Jaguars finished first and third with a Corvette in between. Jack Bush won, Scott Heckert was second, and Art was third.

Corvette was a featured marque of the weekend, and Chevrolet brought out some of the most iconic cars in Corvette history for display!


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Motorsports Market Vintage Racing Team

June 17th, 2022

Art Hebert Motorsports Market Founder &  Driver

Bob Hebert Vintage Racing Driver & Instructor

Gunnar Hebert Race Car Preparation & Driver

Kevin Capone Race Car Sales & Driver

Don Sandy Driver & Racing Patron

Andrew Wait Advisor & Endurance Driver

 

The Motorsports Market team currently races Jaguar E Types as members of the Donovan Motorsports Jaguar Vintage Racing Team, Titan Mk. 6 Formula Fords (often with Geir Ramleth’s ‘Geirheads Racing Team’), a 1963 Lola Mk.5A Formula Junior, a 1999 Martini Picchio SR2, a 1977 Chevron Formula Atlantic B39, a 1986 Swift DB2 Sports 2000 and a Apache Sports 2000.

Art has been racing historic cars for over 15 years, driving production racing cars such as Jaguar E-Types; Porsche 356’s; Austin Healey and more. He has also cut his teeth with Formula Cars, ranging from Formula Ford to Formula One, racing marques such as Cooper, Lola, Ralt, Brabham, March, Titan, and Chevron. He has recently begun his next field of racing; historic endurance prototype cars, such as those that ran at Le Mans and the 24 Hours of Daytona. A respected presence on the historic racing circuit and a frequent winner on the track, Art has proven himself a key member of the vintage racing community. His passion for racing, decades of racing experience and distinguished racing record have established him as a respected resource and partner for vintage race car collectors across the country and around the world.


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2022 SVRA Memorial Day Classic at Lime Rock Park

May 30th, 2022

Racing one of the Donovan Motorsports E Type Jaguars, Art took to the track at the SVRA Lime Rock Park Memorial Day Classic – a huge thank you to Donovan Motorsports, and everyone who contributed to the team effort!

Feature Race 1
B Production – Donovan Motorsports teammate Jason Rabe 1st, Art 2nd
Overall – Jason Rabe 1st, Art 3rd

Feature Race 2
B Production – Art 1st
Overall – Art 2nd

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2022 Laps for Laguna

May 22nd, 2022

“The 2022 season got underway at Laguna Seca on May 21/22. A new format of double race weekends meant a different approach for our racers, keen on hauling the largest amount of points possible for the weekend. ” – [https://www.norwestff.com/new-blog]

Art took both the Lola and Titan to the racing weekend. We finished 12th/37 in the Saturday Crossflow Cup Formula Ford race on Saturday, with teammate Andrew Wait taking the win! On Sunday we finished 10th, and Andrew won again in his Titan Mk.6 FF.

After some car issues took Art off the track for the first Formula Junior race on Saturday, some assistance from Virtuoso Performance and Ed Van Tassell saw Art back on the track Sunday. The Lola worked its way through the pack to finish 1st in the FJ feature race with Chris Locke second and Alberto Fernandez Sr. in third.

“One of the big highlights of the weekend was the amazing dinner overlooking the track from the turn 1 pavilion hosted by the Laguna Seca Raceway Foundation. Thank you teammate and Crossflow Cup double winner, Andrew Wait, for buying a whole table for us to enjoy dinner and the festivities! The MC for the event was Foundation member/fellow vintage racer, Martin Lauber. Martin treated us to an interview with Danny Sullivan regarding Danny’s famous “Spin & Win” Indy 500 victory over Mario Andretti. To spice things up, Martin called Mario during the interview. More than 30 years later the two racers are still battling, in fun, for the rights to that win! What they did agree upon, however, was the great history of Laguna Seca Raceway, and the need to support its continued preservation and growth.

Adobe Road Wines also poured wines from their famous Racing Series of wines. Someone else pouring beverages at the party was Erik Schmid, founder of Red Bus Brewing, a craft beer brewery. Erik was pouring from a selection of their “Oil Can” themed beer, which was a big hit! Erik personally awarded several of the Oil Can beers to us after our win in the Formula Junior race. Thank you Erik! We are looking forward to you joining us on the track soon!” – Art


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Getting Started in Vintage Racing – A Running Behind the Scenes Blog

May 21st, 2022

Follow along with Motorsports Market Vintage Racing Team member Kevin Capone as he journeys back into Vintage Racing!

thinking about getting into Vintage Racing?

Kevin has been a GIS Professional in the IT industry for the past 30 years and an auto enthusiast since childhood, having owned and restored several American and European sports cars. He grew up around the race track both on crew and driving in SCCA, IMSA and various other vintage racing events. He has performed ground up restorations on classic road cars and has raced both modern and vintage racing cars. Kevin is now getting back into racing, starting with a 1988 Chevron B67 Formula Continental and now his 1987 Apache S2000.

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