Project STR Roars Back to Life

Update by John Rogers to the Mazda MX-5 Miata project car
Mar 14, 2011

Chris Harvey pilots our MX-5 to a National Tour win.
With 29 drivers, STR is twice the size of the next-largest class.
Who says you can't take it with you?

After a long winter hibernating in Florida, our Project STR Mazda MX-5 finally saw some action this weekend at the Tire Rack SCCA Dixie National Tour in Cecil, Georgia. Tire Rack drivers Chris Harvey and John Rogers packed their bags and headed for Georgia to compete against 27 other drivers in the burgeoning STR class, which was twice the size of the next-largest class at the event.

Harvey came out of the gate swinging, laying down a flyer on this third run. Despite a challenge from Darren DiSimo in his ’99 Mazda Miata, Harvey secured the lead heading into day two. Rogers managed to hit cones on his first two runs. He finally landed a clean but safe third run that put him seventh after the first day.

Sunday’s round wouldn’t be an easy task, as the rest of the class was eager to chase down leader Chris Harvey. The Honda S2000s used their high revs and extra power to their advantage, with Geoff Walker and his CR posting a faster time than our MX-5. However, Harvey’s lead from day one was enough for him to hold onto the top spot, earning us our first win of the year. Rogers cleaned up his act and avoided hitting any cones; he posted the fourth-fastest time of the day, moving him up to fifth overall for the weekend.

When we began our project last year, we ran the MX-5 in stock trim at this very event. Our guys were just over 8 seconds behind the winner, but they still managed an eighth-place finish. Fast-forward to today, and those same times would have landed us way back in 27th place. This just shows how much the class as a whole has improved, with more drivers and better-prepared cars coming out to play. It’s an exciting class, and one we’re glad to be a part of.

Here is a video of Chis Harvey’s 2nd run on Sunday. It was great right up until it wasn’t.

Full event results can be found here.

Now, if only the rest of the season can go as well as our first event. We have some additional improvements and tuning planned in an effort to keep our car out in front.

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View comments on the GRM forums
imirk HalfDork
3/18/11 6:47 p.m.

Great Job Guys!

Back to the TRM Rims? In the group shot 3/5 cars visible seem to be running them, I also see a set of 6UL and RPF-1.

3/23/11 7:51 a.m.

Yes, we ran the TRMotorsports C3 wheels. Mostly because that was what was on the car while it wintered in Florida at GRM headquarters. Plus, I like the looks. And they don't seem to be slowing us down (at least Chris is going fast).

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