Combined Southern and Southeast Conference event is attracting racers from across the Southeast
SCCA’s Southeast Conference hosted the first round of the Hoosier Racing Tire Super Tour at Sebring in January, then the Super Tour raced west to the Southern Conference for a jaunt at Circuit of the Americas in Austin. For the third round, NOLA Motorsports Park plays host to a dual conference event on March 3-4, dubbed Voodoo le Cinq, that is drawing some of the best racers from Texas to Florida, and points well north, to the 16-turn, 2.75-mile circuit just outside New Orleans.
“We will be at NOLA,” Mazda Motorsports’ Josh Smith, who will be attending as part of Mazda Motorsports Southeast Conference support initiative, confirms. “It’s only a two-day event, but even with the shortened schedule, because it’s a Super Tour, we expect a really good turnout.”
Early signs agree with Smith’s assessment, as the turnout is proving to be significant with more than 170 cars expected for the event, including 30-plus Spec Miatas. The Southeast Conference is showing up big time in that class, with Runoffs champ Preston Pardus, Todd Buras, Michael Carter, Nick Leverone, Jim Drago and Danny Steyn making the trip. It will be interesting to see if the Texans, including Blake Clements, can hold their own. Speaking of Texans, Super Tour points leader Chris Haldeman isn’t on the entry list two weeks out, but it would be a surprise if he isn’t racing, especially with several of his X-Factor customers registered.
Super Touring Lite has a big field of cars, including Super Tour points leader Tommy Johnson Jr., Leverone and Steyn. All but one of the 14 early entries are Mazdas, and all are first- or second-generation Miatas with the exception of Steyn’s NC MX-5 and Markham Watson’s RX-7. Given Leverone’s double-victory performance at COTA, he has to be considered a favorite at NOLA.
In the same race group as STL, Touring 4 has a couple of MX-5s. Rookie Gresham Wagner, who took the double win at Sebring, faces a real test against the Runoffs T4 champ. If Wagner he can hold his form at NOLA, it’s a good indicator that he’s going to have something at the Runoffs, should he make the trip. Also in this group is STU, where Luis Rivera already has a 2018 victory in his pocket.
The newest circuit on the Hoosier Super Tour schedule, NOLA has built a reputation for hosting some fantastic racing, and with some of the best racers in the country headed to the track for this event, this one should be no exception.