Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway more than 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.
Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.
Be sure to tune in for his sports talk program, Thursday Night Thunder, where he discusses the latest in motorsports news with drivers, crew members, and fans. The show takes place (almost) every Thursday at 8:00 pm EST on the Speedway Digest Radio Network.
Contact Adam: Email
Following the race weekend at Silverstone Circuit the RoadRace Factory team has had to make some tough decisions.
Jake Gagne's incident while qualifying in the wet has reactivated his shoulder injury that he sustained in the final round of AMA racing from New Jersey Motorsports Park. After initial consultation from medical staff onsite at Silverstone and a follow up from local medial professionals near our temporary base of operations, it has been decided that Jake should be sent home for immediate medical attention. He has already been flown home to California and has been received by his home physician.
This leaves the team with AMA Daytona Sportbike Rookie of the Year, Tomas Puerta, as it's sole rider for the final round of the British Supersport Series to be held at Brands Hatch.
Everyone wishes Jake a speedy recovery and the team expects to have him back on a bike soon.
RCH Factory Racing – the Supercross and Motocross team co-owned by Freestyle Motocross visionary Carey Hart and 15-time AMA National Champion Ricky Carmichael – has signed 20-year-old superstar Ken Roczen to pilot the team’s No. 94 Suzuki RM-Z450 for the 2015 season.
In addition to landing Roczen, RCH has signed Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwich Shops as co-primary sponsor for the team’s campaign in both the Monster Energy AMA Supercross and the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championships. The new relationship will compliment the team’s current marketing partnerships with Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort, Sycuan Casino and Dodge while marking Jimmy John’s first foray into Supercross and Motocross competition. The Jimmy John’s livery will also be featured prominantly on Carmichael’s and Hart’s motorcycles and riding gear.
“Everyone at Jimmy John’s is looking forward to teaming up with RCH Factory Racing and participating in one of the world’s most exciting forms of motorsports,” explained Jimmy John’s CEO Jimmy John Liautaud. “This is uncharted marketing territory for Jimmy John’s so we’re thrilled to get the season started and see what motorcycle racing is all about. We have a great opportunity to work with Ricky Carmichael and Carey Hart. To be able to combine their standing in the sport with Ken Roczen, one of the hottest riders in the world, is a win-win for Jimmy John’s, our franchisees and team members across the country.”
Roczen stormed the outdoor scene in 2014 by winning the 450 Pro Motocross Championship during his rookie season and, by virtue of the title, will campaign the sport’s coveted No. 1 plate in 2015. His extraordinary outdoor year was foreshadowed by an outstanding third-place finish in the 2014 Monster Energy Supercross championship point tally where the German-born freshman rider picked up two wins and eight podium finishes.
“I am really excited to be back on a Suzuki and especially as a part of the RCH Factory Racing Team’” said Roczen. “With the help of Ricky (Carmichael) and Carey (Hart), two of the sport’s most accomplished owners, and the great technical team they have assembled to take care of my RM-Z450s, I can't wait to get started. We’ve got a great group of sponsors and when you look at the entire program, from top to bottom, RCH was the best package for me. I already eat at Jimmy John’s and own a Ram Truck so we’ve got a great head start!”
The RCH Factory Race team has seen steady progress since Hart and Carmichael joined forces in 2013 and achieved the pairing’s first podium finish in April at Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Always trendsetters in the paddock, RCH continues to show the way with unique marketing initiatives and partnership activations, consistently influencing the feel and dynamic of the pit area.
“I am stoked to have a blue-chip company like Jimmy John’s come on board to support RCH,” commented Carmichael, a five-time Supercross and 10-time Motocross champion. “Jimmy John’s has a great brand and a quality product. We’re excited beyond words to work with such a forward-thinking company and tempt the loyal Supercross and Motocross fan base with the best sandwiches anywhere.
“Ken looked great at the test track and I’m amazed with how quickly he is adapting to his new Suzuki RM-Z. It’s a testament to the team’s hard work and the quality of talent we’re committed to surrounding him with.”
“Having Jimmy John’s on board with RCH is an important signal that our sport is continuing to grow and be recognized by high-profile companies who want to reach our fans,” added Hart. “We’re looking forward to collaborating with their marketing department and having them be a focal point of our activation in the pits this season.”
The stars of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series roll into The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Oct. 30-Nov. 2, for the penultimate race of the 2014 Countdown to the Championship at the 14th annual NHRA Toyota Nationals.
The best in Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock and Pro Stock Motorcycle will once again battle for the coveted victory at one of the world’s most state-of-the-art dragstrips. Antron Brown (Top Fuel), John Force (Funny Car), Shane Gray (Pro Stock) and Matt Smith (Pro Stock Motorcycle) were last year’s winners of the event that will once again be televised nationally on ESPN2.
Celebrating its 14th running, the NHRA Toyota Nationals has provided high stakes action in a city with a reputation for thrills, glitz and glamour. The action on the Vegas strip is matched only by the fire and fury of two 10,000-horsepower machines launching side-by-side down The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway at more than 300 mph.
The event is a critical stop for the teams in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series as they have two races left to prove they have what it takes to be a Mello Yello Series world champion.
Top Fuel pilot Brown, the 2012 world champ, is a two-time winner at Las Vegas. He picked up a victory at the third race of the Countdown in St. Louis and sitting in fifth place needs a strong weekend to keep his championship hopes alive.
Seven-time world champion Tony Schumacher is an eight-time winner at the Strip, including the spring event this year. Schumacher’s U.S. Army dragster made a major statement this month, taking home Wallys in the two opening races in the Countdown to the Championship and a third at the recently completed NHRA Nationals in Pennsylvania. Schumacher holds a 134-point lead over his rivals and is once again showing the form that has led him to seven world championships. He could clinch the championship in Las Vegas if he finishes the race weekend with a lead of 151 points or more.
Doug Kalitta led the points for most of the regular season but has struggled somewhat in the Countdown in his Mac Tools dragster, falling in the opening rounds at Charlotte and Dallas and the second round in St. Louis. He lost a key semifinal match to Schumacher at Reading and now Kalitta must make up major ground at Las Vegas in order to claim his first championship.
Shawn Langdon, the reigning Top Fuel world champ, sits fourth in Top Fuel points and he is looking for his first Las Vegas win. Others to watch in the Top Fuel field include Atlanta and Topeka winner Spencer Massey, reigning Auto Club of Southern California Road the Future Award winner Brittany Force, who advanced to her fourth final round of the season in Reading, Pomona and Sonoma winner Khalid alBalooshi, Englishtown and Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals winner Richie Crampton and Denver winner J.R. Todd.
In Funny Car, Matt Hagan was explosively spectacular in moving into the series points lead with his victory at the NHRA Nationals in Reading. His Rocky Boots Dodge Charger’s engine erupted in a fireball as it crossed the finish line ahead of Tommy Johnson Jr. when he took the win at Reading last weekend. It was Hagan’s second Countdown win and he enters Vegas with a 36-point lead over John Force.
Force locked up his 16th world championship when he defeated daughter Courtney Force in the final round at this event last season. Force’s Castrol GTX High Mileage Ford Mustang has been one of best cars so far this season and he is continuing his pursuit for his 17th championship. Although he lost in the opening round at Reading, Force is a four-time winner at Las Vegas, including three during the NHRA Toyota Nationals.
Courtney Force is also a top contender for the championship, as she earned back-to-back playoff victories at Dallas and St. Louis and sits third in points in her Traxxas Mustang, 72 back of Hagan. She became the first female to post four wins in a season in Funny Car and the first woman to win back-to-back races in Funny Car. A world championship would be the icing on the cake to a dream season for Force, who claimed the 100th win by a female driver in the Mello Yello Series at Topeka and passed her sister Ashley in Sonoma for the title of winningest female Funny Car driver.
Other pre-race favorites in Funny Car include three-time season winner Alexis DeJoria, Bristol winner and title contender Johnson Jr., Robert Hight, Ron Capps, Tim Wilkerson, Del Worsham and three-time Las Vegas winner Cruz Pedregon.
In Pro Stock one of the most intense playoff battles is brewing between as many as five drivers. Jason Line leads the pack in his Summit Racing Equipment Chevy Camaro and is followed by history-chaser Erica Enders-Stevens, a four-time winner this season who is trying to become the first female to win an NHRA world championship title in Pro Stock. Hot on her heels is Dave Connolly, Gray and Allen Johnson. All four drivers are within striking range of the leader and all will look to shake things up in Las Vegas.
Smith was victorious in Pro Stock Motorcycle last season en route to his second championship ring. Smith has not visited victory lane in 2014 and will be looking to turn that fortune around as the Countdown winds down. Smith’s wife Angie has the lone Matt Smith Racing win in 2014, coming at Epping, N.H. when she beat Matt in the final.
Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson teammates Andrew Hines and Eddie Krawiec have been the class of the Pro Stock Motorcycle field during the regular season. Both have won this event three times and Hines holds a 25-point advantage over Krawiec following the NHRA Nationals.
Hector Arana Jr. has solidly been the third best bike throughout the season but will need a win soon aboard his Lucas Oil Buell to have a chance to catch up to Hines and Krawiec. Steve Johnson reached the final rounds at both Charlotte and Dallas, and he must also make a move in order to threaten the Harley-Davidsons. Jerry Savoie, who picked up his first career victory at St. Louis and was the No. 1 qualifier at Reading, NHRA Nationals runner-up Scotty Pollacheck, Hector Arana Sr., and three-time world champ and recent returner Angelle Sampey, all have a chance to make some noise at the Strip in the two-wheeled category.
As always, fans will have the opportunity to interact with their favorite drivers as they’re granted an exclusive pit pass to the most powerful and sensory-filled motorsports attraction on the planet. This unique opportunity in motorsports gives fans direct access to the teams, allowing them to see firsthand the highly-skilled mechanics service their hot rods between rounds, and enjoy some cherished face time and get autographs from their favorite NHRA drivers.
Fans also will want to visit NHRA’s popular Nitro Alley and Manufacturers Midway, where sponsors and race vendors create a carnival atmosphere, with interactive displays, simulated competitions, merchandise, food and fun for the entire family.
The event will also feature thrilling competition in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series and see which driver will be crowned world champion at the season finale in the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.
Mello Yello Drag Racing Series qualifying begins Friday, Oct. 31, with sessions at 1 and 4 p.m. The final two qualifying sessions will take place Saturday, Nov. 1, at 1 and 4 p.m. Final eliminations are scheduled for 11 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 2.
Red Bull Global Rallycross will return to Las Vegas for its season finale for the third consecutive year, hosting Red Bull Global Rallycross Las Vegas at The LINQ Promenade on November 4-5. Held in partnership with Caesars Entertainment which is the host venue, presenting sponsor, and partner of the event, the action will take place at the LINQ Hotel & Casino during the annual SEMA Show, the premier automotive specialty products trade show in the world.
For the first time in series history, four drivers enter the finale with a chance at the championship: Ken Block, winner of the 2013 Las Vegas race, former Formula 1 stars Scott Speed and Nelson Piquet Jr., and defending GRC Lites champion Joni Wiman. The four championship-eligible drivers have combined for four victories, 16 podiums, and eight poles so far in 2014. All four drivers are within 30 points of one another entering the final race, meaning that the best finisher among them in Las Vegas will likely take home the season-long championship.
Other drivers planning to compete include 2012 Las Vegas winner Tanner Foust, multiple X Games gold medalists Brian Deegan and Bucky Lasek, current GRC Lites champion Mitchell DeJong, and Sverre Isachsen, winner of the series’ most recent race at DirtFish Rally School in Snoqualmie, WA.
“Caesars Entertainment Corporation has a rich history of promoting motorsport events in Las Vegas, and we’re proud to become a part of that heritage,” said Red Bull GRC CEO Colin Dyne. “From Formula 1 to Evel Knievel’s fountain jump, Caesars represents the gold standard for event promotion in the city. We are greatly looking forward to ending our 2014 season on a high note with our first event at The LINQ.”
The parking lot adjacent to The LINQ Promenade and at the base of the High Roller – the world’s tallest observation wheel - will be transformed into a high-octane motorsports playground, featuring dirt, asphalt and tabletop jumps signature to the series. Specific track layout information will be released in the coming weeks.
For tickets to Red Bull Global Rallycross Las Vegas at The LINQ, head to http://www.redbullglobalrallycross.com/LV. The race will be broadcast on NBC on Sunday, November 16, at 1:30PM ET.
Koch sewed up the Championship, and the Mazda Motorsports Scholarship, with a total of six wins, and two additional second-place finishes. He also scored a total of nine pole positions in 12 races, resulting in a total count of 724 points.
The International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) returns to Memphis International Raceway in Millington, Tenn. this Friday and Saturday (October 10-11) for the annual IHRA Summit Racing Equipment World Finals.
The IHRA Summit Racing Equipment World Finals is IHRA's biggest race weekend. Serving as the final race of the season, the IHRA Summit World Finals will feature the crowning of champions in five professional categories, as part of the IHRA's Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series, and 10 sportsman world champions. The event will feature racers from more than 30 states, five Canadian provinces and from as far away as Alaska, Aruba and Hawaii.
The Nitro Jam professional classes will include more than 20 nitro-powered cars in Nitro Funny Car, Nitro Altered and Nitro Harley, plus the return of Mountain Motor Pro Stock and the debut of the fastest women in drag racing - the Larsen Motorsports Jet Dragster racing team. Points and big money are on the line for all of the teams in attendance as the best racers in the world travel to Tennessee for two days of championship drag racing.
The IHRA Summit Racing Equipment World Finals is the 12th and final race on the 2014 IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series North American Tour.
WHAT: IHRA Summit Racing Equipment World Finals
WHERE: Memphis International Raceway
WHEN: October 10-11 | Nitro Jam Showtime: 7:30 p.m. (Fri) & 6 p.m. (Sat)
TICKETS & INFO: www.nitrojam.com | (901) 969-7223
NITRO JAM CLASSES
AMSOIL Nitro Funny Car
Mountain Motor Pro Stock
EVENT INFO: The 2014 IHRA Summit World Finals will feature the best racers from the world of drag racing in five professional categories and 10 sportsman classes. Each day will feature sportsman racing throughout the day and professional racing in the evening. Nitro Jam professional racing will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and 6 p.m. on Saturday.
New in 2014, the IHRA will host an all-new Fan Fest pit area centered around the Larsen Motorsports compound. FanFest will feature driver autographs and interviews, an interactive display showcasing how to build, design and race a jet-powered racecar in the Jet Technology Center and the exciting Hollywood Cars of the Stars collection featuring some of the most famous cars ever driven in film and television including the General Lee from Dukes of Hazzard, the DeLorean from Back to the Future, the Batmobile from the 1960s Batman television series and more.
The FanFest pit area opens at 4 p.m. on Friday and 2 p.m. on Saturday.
TELEVISION: The IHRA Summit World Finals will be filmed for the IHRA's Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series television show airing on MAV TV beginning in November. The event will also be live-broadcast throughout the weekend on www.ihra.com.
LIGHT UP BEALE STREET: IHRA will be holding a special fan event on Beale Street on Thursday, October 9 from 5-8 p.m. IHRA will have Nitro Funny Car star Bruce Litton and the "U.S. Male" Funny Car, Ron Hope and the "Rat Trap" Nitro Altered and the first ladies of drag racing - the Larsen Motorsports Jet Dragster Team - all downtown on Thursday. IHRA will have music, contests, driver autographs and the Larsen team will even be firing up one of their jet-powered dragsters right on Beale Street!
Nitro Funny Car: Jason Rupert "Black Plague," Shawn Bowen "Violator," Mike McIntire Jr. "McAttack," Ronnie Young "Blue Max," John Hale "Mike Burkhart," Tim Boychuk "Forever Forward," Mark Sanders "Mr. Explosive," Bruce Litton "U.S. Male," Peter Gallen "Poverty Stricken," Jake Crimmins "Crazy Jake," Mike Smith "Hard Guys," Greg Jacobsmeyer "All-Star Dodge"
Nitro Altered: Kyle Hough "Nanook," Ron Hope "Rat Trap," Ron Maroney "Blind Faith," Don Blackshear "Bullet Bob," Mike Hilsabeck "Arizona Thunder," Troy Martin "Missing Pieces"
Nitro Harley: Jay Turner, Mike Scott, Randal Andras, Larry Brancaccio, Alvin Kobernusz, Lyle Newton, Mike Pelrine
Mountain Motor Pro Stock: John DeFlorian, Cary Goforth, Dean Goforth, Scott Hintz, Kevin Bealko, John Konigshofer, Brad Waddle
Jet Dragster: Elaine Larsen, Marisha Falk, Kat Moller, Allison West
2014 NITRO JAM FINAL ROUND LEADERS
Nitro Funny Car
Jason Rupert 6 (4 wins)
Mark Sanders 2 (0 wins)
Peter Gallen 2 (0 wins)
Mike McIntire Jr. 1 (1 win)
John Hale 1 (1 win)
Shawn Bowen 1 (1 win)
John Smith 1 (0 wins)
Cary Goforth 4 (3 wins)
John DeFlorian 3 (1 win)
Kevin Bealko 3 (1 win)
Todd Hoerner 2 (0 wins)
Brad Waddle 1 (1 win)
John Kongishofer 1 (1 win)
Dean Goforth 1 (1 win)
Scott Hintz 1 (0 wins)
Randal Andras 4 (2 wins)
Mike Scott 3 (3 wins)
Mark Cox 2 (2 wins)
Jay Turner 2 (0 wins)
Mike Pelrine 2 (0 wins)
Nate Gagnon 1 (1 win)
Joey Sternotti 1 (0 wins)
Larry Brancaccio 1 (0 wins)
Ron Maroney 5 (3 wins)
Don Blackshear 2 (2 wins)
Troy Martin 2 (1 win)
Mike Hilsabeck 2 (1 win)
Kyle Hough 2 (0 wins)
Ron Hope 1 (1 win)
Brian Hope 1 (0 wins)
Shane Harter 1 (0 wins)
Elaine Larsen 7 (3 wins)
Dawn Perdue 6 (2 wins)
Marisha Falk 4 (3 wins)
Kat Moller 1 (1 win)
PRO POINTS (Top 5)
Nitro Funny Car: 1. Jason Rupert; 2. Mark Sanders; 3. Mike McIntire; 4. Tim Boychuk; 5. Bruce Litton
Pro Stock: 1. Cary Goforth; 2. John DeFlorian; 3. Kevin Bealko; 4. Todd Hoerner; 5. Pete Berner
Nitro Harley: 1. Randal Andras; 2. Mike Scott; 3. Mark Cox; 4. Jay Turner; 5. Alvin Kobernusz
Nitro Altered: 1. Ron Maroney; 2. Don Blackshear; 3. Mike Hilsabeck; 4. Kyle Hough; 5. Ron Hope
Jet Dragster: 1. Elaine Larsen; 2. Marisha Falk; 3. Dawn Perdue; 4. Kat Moller; 5. Allison West
FRIDAY: Sportsman Racing @ 3 p.m.; FanFest Opens @ 4 p.m.; Nitro Jam @ 7:30 p.m.
SATURDAY: Sportsman Racing @ 11 a.m.; FanFest Opens @ 2 p.m.; Nitro Jam @ 6 p.m.
SUMMIT WORLD FINALS EVENT PAGE
SUMMIT WORLD FINALS SCHEDULE
SUMMIT WORLD FINALS TICKETS
Feld Motor Sports® announced today the lineup of Pit Party events at the Monster Energy Cup on October 18, including Dirt Shark Biggest Whip qualifying, a FMX Demo, a BMX Dirt Speed and Style Invitational, the BMX Dirt Best Trick presented by Toyota, Bellator MMA, Drifting, and a Street Bike Stunt Demo.
Click the play button below for a preview of the 2014 Monster Energy Cup Pit Party
The Pit Party will play host to the Dirt Shark Biggest Whip contest’s qualifying session, featuring Tom Parson, Jeremy “Twitch” Stenberg, Todd Potter, Edgar Torronteras, Jarryd McNeil, Brett Cue, Ronnie Renner, Nate Adams, Beau Bamburg, Billy Laninovich, Deston Cantrell, James Carter, Tyler Bereman, and Lance Coury. The world’s best will be narrowed down to eight riders through the qualifying process. This will set the stage for the Main Event that will take place during the night program, with the winner taking home $15,000. The riders competing in this go-for-broke contest represent more than 30 X-Games gold medals.
Complimenting the Dirt Shark Biggest Whip qualifying, Twitch, Nate Adams, Adam Jones and Blake “Bilko” Williams will entertain fans during the FMX Demo.
An all-star line-up of BMX riders will duke it out for the BMX Dirt Speed and Style Invitational and the BMX Best Trick presented by Toyota. The ‘who’s who’ in BMX will compete for a combined $18,000 in these two competitions, featuring Ryan Nyquist, TJ Ellis, Kyle Baldcock, Pat Casey, Kevin Peraza, Ryan Guettler, Andy Buckworth, Scotty Cranmer, Daniel Sandoval, Rob Darden, Colton Satterfield, James Foster, Mike Varga, Vince Bryron, and Kris Fox.
A stacked card of four professional fights is on tap for the Bellator MMA event at 4:45 p.m. PT. Monster Energy-sponsored fighters Quintan Jackson, Michael Chandler, and Joey Beltrans will be on hand to sign autographs for the fans.
Sergio Moore vs. Caleb Contreas
Steve Garcia vs. Sean Cantor
Adrian Hadribeaj vs. AJ Williams
James “The Beast” Wilson vs. Maurice “The Gorilla” Jackson
Drifting legends Vaughn Gittin Jr. and Casey Currie will perform during the smoke show. Fans will be able to get a first-hand look at the speed and power of these machines.
Rounding out the day’s festivities will be a Street Bike Stunt Demo.
The Monster Energy Cup airs LIVE on FOX Sports 2 on Saturday, Oct. 18 at 9:00 p.m. ET., and the following day, FOX Sports 1, will re-air the entire race at 1:00 p.m. ET. A week later, Sunday, October 26, FOX broadcast network offers a 90-minute Monster Energy Cup encore special following NFL football in most markets, while preceding football in others (check local listings).
The 2014 Monster Energy Cup features an all-new track design inspired by 15-time AMA National Champion Ricky Carmichael. The Carmichael-inspired track design will consist of supercross and motocross obstacles unlike any other racetrack design in the world. The Monster Energy Cup track will include a unique split start where 11 riders from each side will blitz down a long straightway to huge 180 degree bowl turns, then converge into one lane. The Monster Energy Cup posts a $250,000 purse with the winner walking away with a $100,000 check, and any rider that wins all three Main Events will take home $1 million.
For more information on the Monster Energy Cup, log on to www.MonsterEnergyCup.com.
Tickets for the 2014 Monster Energy Cup can be purchased at the Thomas & Mack Center Box Office, UNLVtickets outlets, online at www.UNLVtickets.com,www.MonsterEnergyCup.com, or by phone at (702) 739-FANS. Tickets will be available at the Sam Boyd Stadium Box Office on the day of the event only.
Jerome Mee's first career TUDOR United SportsCar Championship event at Road Atlanta ended near the halfway point of the famed 10-hour Petit Le Mans Powered by Mazda endurance race Oct. 4.
It was a day filled with learning for Mee, 48, who drove wide into Turn 12 in his second driving stint of the race, ending Performance Tech Motorsports' run in the Prototype Challenge category.
"It was exciting to kick off my first time racing at this level, but it was challenging, as I found," Mee said.
|From Left: James French, David Ostella, Jerome Mee|
David Ostella, one of Mee's Performance Tech Motorsports co-drivers, experienced an electrical issue early in the race. Performance Tech's mechanics fixed the problem, but the repair time proved costly, leaving Ostella, Mee and third co-driver James French 19 laps down.
"We knew we were going to have a long way to go, but there were 9 ½ hours to go in the race and anything can happen, so we just put our heads down," Mee said.
Mee took over for Ostella for his first stint in the No. 38 Dash Neighborhood/Phillips 66 Prototype Challenge car, finding his rhythm right away and avoiding multiple surrounding incidents.
"Toward the end of my first stint coming out of Turn 11, I was with a group of one PC car and two GTLM cars," Mee said. "As I came around Turn 7, we were all packed up, and I got on the throttle a little too early. My rear tire was on the curbing, and I slid sideways a little bit off the wall."
The car stalled, forcing Mee to drive to pit lane. A broken bolt was found - a quick fix for the Performance Tech crew before sending co-driver French back on the 12-turn, 2.54-mile road course.
Mee replaced French four hours into the 10-hour event for his second and final stint.
"I got back into the car, got about an hour in, felt pretty good and made several passes," Mee said. "I came down into Turn 10 and was behind a Ferrari GTLM. I passed him on the outside coming up the hill and came down the hill (into Turn 12) too wide, and that was pretty much the end of it.
"I was disappointed in my own performance with that. I had made that turn over the course of the week many times without incident, and I just did it wrong."
The early exit left Mee yearning for improvement during the offseason leading into the 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship season.
"I'm a 48-year-old gentleman driver who is still developing, and I have a lot of things I need to work on," Mee said. "I'm going to work with Performance Tech on developing a training program so that I can get as much possible seat time as I can. On top of that, I'm going to try and drop another 20 pounds. I will lift a little bit, but it's going to be mostly cardiovascular work. The better physically in shape you are, the better mentally you are in the car, and I want to be as crisp as I can be for these entire endurance events."
Mee plans to race with Performance Tech Motorsports in 2015 at the Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona, Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida, Sahlen's Six Hours of the Glen and Petit Le Mans Powered by Mazda.