Ann Arbor, Michigan - February 10, 2015
New Projects and Continued Driving Instruction in Store for PMR in 2015
2015 will bring more driving instruction with the Rally Sport Region Porsche Club, and FasTrak Exotic Driving Experience this year.
Phil Mather has been named as Co-Track Chairman for the Rally Sport Region Porsche Club. He will be assisting Track Chairman, Christian Maloof for the 2015 season, ensuring the events run smoothly.
Fastrak Exotics has now added two day events at the Bosch Proving Grounds in Flat Rock, Michigan for more chances to drive this year! As business continues to grow, so do we!
RSR PCA has also added a Saturday (August 22) event at Waterford Hills for those who are unable to attend on the normal Tuesday HPDEs. Ross Bentley, world renouned driver coach and instructor, will be joining RSR at our premier June event at Grattan Raceway in Belding, Michigan! If you've ever wanted to visit a world class racetrack but in a small town atmosphere, Grattan is the place to be. If you can drive fast at Grattan, you can drive fast on any track in the world.
While there are no races planned for this year, Mather is working on a very big project and is looking for an experienced business partner and investors. If you know of anyone that has start-up experience, please have them contact us! firstname.lastname@example.org
Ann Arbor, Michigan - May 20, 2014
Mather to Concentrate on High Performance Driver Instruction for 2014
The SpecNeon that Phil Mather Racing was campagining last season has sold and is on its way to a new home, to be raced at Waterford Hills again. Phil has no racing plans currently for the season and will be concentrating on instructing with the Rally Sport Region Porsche Club, FasTrak Exotic Driving Experience, and a couple of other groups.
"I've decided to take a step back from the racing seat this year to regroup. I have been racing wheel to wheel for over 10 years and as much as I'd like to continue racing next season, a break is overdue. I have a project that I have been working on that will require more of my time and hope to announce something soon with regards to that. I will still get track time by instructing, and helping others improve on track has become a very rewarding experience for me. I plan on being back racing in 2015 in one way or another."
If you'd like to inquire about track instruction with Phil Mather, please let us know.
Thank you everyone for your continued support! We are looking forward to a productive, exciting, and fun 2014!
Ann Arbor, Michigan - October 27, 2013
Top 5 Finish at the 2013 SCCA Charge of the Headlight Brigade 13 Hour Endurance Race at Virginia International Raceway
Phil Mather returned to Virginia International Raceway
to team up with Long Road Racing
for the 2013 SCCA Charge of the Headlight Brigade 13 Hour Endurance Race. He was joined by experienced drivers Christian Maloof and Daniel Conway for this effort. Mather raced this event in 2011 with Long Road Racing to a class victory and top ten overall finish. This year he was looking to repeat.
The weekend started on Friday with a testing session where all three drivers familiarized themselves with the #75 SpecMiata and the track. All of the drivers were very equal in lap time running within a second of each other over the 3.27 mile road course. During the test session though, all drivers noted a slight grind when shifting into fourth gear. It was decided to play it safe and change the transmission before qualifying. However, there were some complications with the rebuilt transmission that was installed. Mather took the racecar out to qualify and was only able to run one timed lap due to being unable to shift properly and set a time that would place the car 13th on grid out of 14 SpecMiatas, and 52nd overall out of 56 racecars. Long Road Racing's crew did a phenomenal job and put another transmission into the car for the next day's race, but unfortunately the drivers missed night practice. The auxiliary lights to be used the following evening were aimed in the paddock area after the car was repaired. The crew worked late into the night finishing final preparations for the racecars (they were supporting five racecars total) for the race.
The driver rotation for the race was decided as Maloof starting, with Conway driving second, and Mather third. The team also decided to run a fairly conservative race pace to safe fuel and hopefully eliminate a pitstop, which would gain the team about a lap advantage, in theory. Endurance racing is all about making the car survive to the finish, not just about racing as fast as possible. There are times where the drivers need to drive flat out and push for the fastest lap time. Other times the drivers need to short shift and lift off of the throttle early before braking to conserve fuel. Even while driving conservatively, the lap times were still quite quick. The Long Road Racing crew, many of whom work with the professional race team Freedom Autosport
, performed eight flawless pitstops over the 13 hours, and the fuel saving strategy did allow the team to make one less pitstop, gaining them some track position. During Mather's stints, he witnessed spins, near crashes, and avoided several other drivers' mistakes. Maloof and Conway reported similar stories throughout the race. "Racing an endurance race takes incredible concentration, not just trying to conserve fuel, but also driving perfectly and consistently every single lap." Mather said, "It is a different style of driving than sprint races. You must take care of the racecar to make sure it survives and the other drivers can get in after you without having to worry about it. After a typical 45 minute sprint race, the racecar is serviced immediately and any problems are repaired before the next race. This race is over 13 sprint races long and the car needs to survive the entire distance with minimal servicing."
At the end of the 13 hours, Mather, Maloof, and Conway brought home the Long Road Racing #75 SpecMiata, without a scratch on it, fifth in class
and 18th overall
Surviving this race is an accomplishment and it couldn't be done without great drivers, a well prepared racecar, and a great crew supporting them. Thank you to Christan Maloof, Daniel Conway, and the entire Long Road Racing crew for all of your support throughout the weekend!
Also, thank you to Kieth Calhoon of The Health and Fitness Center at Washtenaw Community College
for helping Mather prepare and plan workouts that would allow him to stay sharp and focused during his stints behind the wheel.
Thank you as always to Phil's father, Bruce Mather of CG-Lock
for all the support. There will be pictures and video posted soon that he took throughout the race.
Phil Mather Racing's plans for next year are still being planned. Stay tuned to PhilMatherRacing.com
and Phil Mather Racing's
facebook page for continued updates!
Thank you to all of our fans for following us this season! Here's to bigger and better things next year!
Ann Arbor, Michigan - September 30, 2013
Race Weekend #6
The final race weekend of the 2013 Waterford Hills season is complete. It was an up and down weekend for Phil Mather Racing.
Saturday's qualifying went well, with Mather starting in second position again, just 0.049 seconds off of pole position. Saturday's race, however, was another story. Just after a restart on lap 8 of the 12 lap race, Mather was in second place defending a charge from the third place #78 Spec Neon when he experienced rear wheel lockup diving into a turn. This sent him sideways into the turn. When correcting, he ended up making contact with #78 and ultimately into the tire barrier on the exit of the turn. Fortunately, Mather was able to back out of the tires and continue. The car was mechanically sound and he turned his fastest lap in the race while trying to chase down his competition. He finished third in class.
Sunday morning's race was much better and very interesting. Weather was calling for rain, but at race start, it was dry, but threatening. However, that changed quickly and rain started. And Mather was on dry tires with no tread for wet weather, starting third. He was quickly able to pass into second place and challenge for the lead. But with wet conditions and a very narrow and slippery racetrack passing was very difficult. He was able to hold on to second until the finish.
The weather wasn't much better for the 12 lap feature race. This time though, the track was damp to begin with and heavy mist in the air, but there was no standing water on the track. Mather gambled on running slick dry tires again. It was an exciting start with Mather on the slippery line going through the first two turns. When racing in the rain, the racing line changes. You need to avoid the traditional racing line where rubber builds up and the asphalt and concrete get polished from constantly being driving over, and try to drive on the part of the track that is not typically driven on, i.e. the rain line. When starting side by side, sometimes you don't have a choice and need to drive on the less grippy part of the track. So at the apex of turn two, there may have been very brief contact between Mather and the #37 SpecNeon, but not enough to cause any damage. The race was very close for the entire 12 laps with Mather running side by side with the #37 several times just inches apart, but never any contact. He finished just 0.442 seconds behind at the finish to close out the season.
Also, this race wrapped up the Waterford Hills points championship. With Mather competing in 12 of the 18 races, he still ended up second in the points championship in his first season of SpecNeon.
Next up, Phil Mather Racing will be competing in the 2013 SCCA Charge of the Headlight Brigade 13 Hour Endurance Race at Virginia International Raceway on October 26. He will be racing for Long Road Racing in the SpecMiata class and looking to repeat his 2011 class win with them. He will be co-driving with friend and fellow high performance driving instructor Christian Maloof, and experienced Grand-Am racer Daniel Conway. PMR will be giving live updates via Facebook throughout the race, so make sure to like us (click the Facebook icon above)!
Ann Arbor, Michigan - September 8, 2013
Race weekend #5 is in the record books for the Waterford Hills Road Racing season, and Phil Mather Racing is inching closer to another victory, but it was not to be this round. The three race weekend was full of excitement from start to finish.
(Feature race video links:
Part 1 - http://youtu.be/QiPalb6phzs
Part 2 - http://youtu.be/_HwuS3Z9p9I
Unfortunately, the weekend started out rough, with a broken half-shaft on the warm up lap for Friday's practice sessions. The rest of the day was spent rounding up parts which meant that Mather didn't get to test the changes made to the car since last race.
Friday started out better however, with the Phil Mather Racing/CG-Lock #06 SpecNeon qualifying on outside pole for the first race of the weekend. As race time approached, the weather wasn't looking so good and rain started to fall. It was light at first and Mather began to buckle in, ready to race. However, at the last second, the call was made to change to rain tires. Helping crew on Saturday was Josh Engstrom, who has lots of experience crewing for rally teams, so he is used to fast pace car changes. With his help, all four tires were changed and Mather was back in the car ready to race in less than five minutes. The race is self was quite a show. It was called "The best race I've seen in 10 years,", and "EPIC", by several people. For a little background, the SpecNeons race with other class cars on track at the same time, separated at the start by about half of a lap. They are typically the slower cars in the field. For the rain race, however, they were not. Mather and his usual competition #37, Sean Grogan, got an excellent start and were fighting nose to tail from the beginning. They quickly caught up to the slower of the SpecMiatas (many of whom chose to stay on slick dry tires instead of treaded rain tires). Mather got separated from #37 by traffic, but was never more than a couple seconds behind. They fought their way through the traffic and eventually it was #37's turn to get held up. Mather caught up and got a couple of lucky breaks being able to make faster passes than Grogan did. At the finish, Mather finished 0.327 seconds behind the #37 SpecNeon. Mather not only finished second in class, he finished second overall! There were also zero caution flags and no contact between Mather and the #37 throughout the race, even though they were at times separated by only a few inches on a very wet racetrack. "This was one of those races that I will remember for a long time, even though I didn't come away with the victory; it was just great, hard fought, and clean racing the entire way through," Phil said afterwards. "I only needed one more lap and I would have had him." Unfortunately the camera battery died while sitting on grid for the start of the 12 lap race.
Mather started in second place again for race two of the weekend. The weather had dried out for Sunday and Phil was able to evaluate the changes made to the car. Seven of the 8 laps were run within 0.5 seconds of each other, meaning the car was very consistent and Mather was running it as hard as possible. At the end of the race, he was 1.009 seconds behind the leader and knew a couple more changes were needed for the feature race.
Sunday afternoon's 15 lap Feature race was another one for the record books. Mather knew he had to push hard at the start for a chance for the win. And push he did. He again started on the outside pole, meaning he had the outside line through turns one and two. He knew if he could keep the nose of his car next to the #37 through turn two, he had a chance to get the lead. That is exactly what he did. By the entrance to the turn for Hill Top, he was in the lead. The #37 was right on his rear bumper though and wasn't going to let him get away easily. Throughout the race, you could have thrown a blanket over Mather and the #37. Once again, there was zero contact and the race was very clean. With four laps to go, Mather's rear tires were completely shot and he was sliding the rear of the car around almost every turn. The #37 finally got a nose inside of the Paddock Bend and was able to make a pass in the S-turns as Mather got a little sideways and put two wheels in the dirt on the exit of the turns. That was all that was needed. At the end of the 15 laps, Mather was 1.5 seconds behind, with absolutely no tires left. (See picture on the right).
Race weekend #6, and the last race weekend at Waterford Hills for the season will be September 28-29.
Ann Arbor, Michigan - August 10, 2013
Another Podium Finish for Phil Mather Racing!
Waterford Hills race weekend #4 was another successful weekend for Phil Mather Racing and the Half Baked Schemes Racing SpecNeon.
Friday was spent scrubbing in a new set of tires and testing a new rear brake package, hoping to eliminate the rear wheel lock up issue that has been plaguing the team this year. Initial testing looked promising.
Mather was only racing in Saturday's events this weekend. He would be instructing with FasTrak Exotics Driving Experience on Sunday.
Qualifying went well, with Mather posting the second quickest time in the session, only 0.4 sec. off of pole.
There was an incident at the very start of the race between some out of class cars that caused a black flag all and the race was stopped while cleanup occurred. Fortunately no one was injured in the accidents. On the restart, Mather was right on the bumper of the class leader when the rear brake lockup issues returned. This resulted in a flat spotted right rear tire causing the handling of the car to worsen every lap, but Mather was still fighting as hard as he could to keep up with the leader. At the end of the 12 lap race though, he ended up in second place with two completely worn out rear tires and some issues to solve before the next race weekend.
"Even with the handling issues this weekend, I am pleased with the results. Now that the car is more reliable, I will have time to spend on sorting some of the handling and braking issues and shoot for more wins this season", Mather said. "Thanks to CG-Lock for their continued support, and Michael Occhipinti of Half Baked Racing Schemes for the opportunity to drive their racecar this season! The car has turned out to be competitive and will only get better from here."
The next race will be September 7th at Waterford Hills.
Ann Arbor, Michigan - July 7, 2013
Pole, Victory, Victory, and Second Place for Phil Mather Racing!
Race weekend number 3 of the Waterford Hills Raceway season was a great success for Phil Mather Racing!
After some more teething issues, the Half Baked Schemes Racing SpecNeon ran almost flawlessly the rest of the weekend. Saturday's qualifying session was Phil Mather's best yet grabbing pole position during the 20 minute session. However, on the cool down lap, the car lost coolant and began to overheat. Friends of PMR were attending this weekend's race, though, and they jumped on the car and began to diagnose the problem (it also helped that they are powertrain engineers for major car companies). It was determined that the cooling fan was not working properly due to a bad relay. One jumper connector later and the car was fixed enough to run the races.
Race one of the three race weekend was eventful for Mather, where he led flag to flag to capture his first victory in SpecNeon and at Waterford Hills! On the first lap of the 12 lap race, there was a major crash with a car ending up on its roof and the race was stopped while the track was cleared (no one was injured, thankfully). After the restart, he was battling the #37 of Sean Grogan the entire race, driving defensively when needed, but was able to hold the lead without much challenge until the last lap. Going into the last turn, the #37 made an attempt to pass, bumping Mather's car in the left rear wheel, sending him sideways. Mather was able to hold on and grab his first win of the season.
After discussing the cooling issues with Chris Childs of Angry Sheep Motorsports (http://www.angrysheepmotorsports.com/), some more cooling modifications were made for Sunday's two races.
Sunday morning, Mather started on pole again, thanks to winning on Saturday. This eight lap race was a bit closer than Saturday's. Mather was again turning fast laps while driving just fast enough to keep the #37 behind. Another passing attempt (this time there was no contact) was made in the last turn of the last lap, but it was Mather's race! Race win number 2 was his!
In the Sunday afternoon feature race, a 15 lapper this time, Mather started in second position after getting the second fastest lap in Saturday's race. Mather was again battling with #37 and was right on his rear bumper for the first five laps. The race was stopped, however, due to another crash that required significant cleanup (again, no injuries). On the restart, Mather got caught behind a slower, out of class car. Some minor contact was made entering the hill top turn. Unfortunately, this allowed the leader to pull out a gap on him. Phil started charging and gaining on the leader but there just wasn't enough time, landing him in second position for the feature race.
This weekend wouldn't have been possible without the help of several people. Corey O., Josh E., and Cory B. were key in helping diagnose the overheating issue and coming up with a solution quickly enough to get Mather ready to race. Danielle, Alex, and Steve O. were on hand for support as well as team owner Michael Occhipinti and Phil's girlfriend Mandy S. "I can't thank everyone enough for the help they provided this weekend. The results from this weekend were not possible with out all of their support!"
Thank you to CG-Lock and SeatSnug (www.CG-Lock.com) for their continued support.
Also, thank you to Mechanical Simulation (www.carsim.com). Mather has always raced rear-wheel-drive cars and has limited practice time in a front-wheel-drive racecar. Their driving simulator has allowed Mather to practice driving techniques of front-wheel-drive cars at the limit without having to worry about wearing out tires or damaging a car. Some of the techiques learned on the simulator were employed during this weekend's races.
PMR's next Waterford Hills Raceway race will be August 10. Before that, Mather will be instructing with FasTrak Exotic Driving Experience (www.fastrakexotics.com) at the Robert Bosch Proving Grounds, July 21. If you want the chance to drive a Lamborghini Gallardo or Ferrari 360 at speed or ride along with a professional racecar driver on a hot lap, go to their website and buy yourself an experience of a lifetime! Also, if you want to take your sports car out for some exercise, join Mather with the Rally Sport Region Porsche Club (rsp.pca.org) at Waterford Hills on July 23.
Ann Arbor, Michigan - June 8, 2013
1st Ever Mechanical DNF for Phil Mather Racing
The second race weekend could have gone better for Phil Mather Racing. After a successful test day at Waterford Hills Raceway, the weekend started to go downhill. Mather did qualify second in class, over one second quicker than his previous time at this racetrack in the SpecNeon. However, after qualifying, an engine problem was discovered. A loose spark plug caused a loss in power. Also, a valve lifter in the engine was not working properly. It was decided to run the race and roll the dice, hoping for the best.
The race started very well with Mather getting a jump at the start, but being on the outside of turn one, he slid behind the leader into second place, giving him a nudge entering turn two. Even with an engine that was low on power, Mather was holding his own in second place, comfortably ahead of third place and the leader still within reach. However, it all came to an end on lap four of the eight lap race. Heading into turn four, the engine let go, sending a huge plume of smoke out the exhaust. Mather pulled the car off track, unable to continue.
Despite the setback, progress was made and there is light at the end of the tunnel. The car is running faster, despite being down on power, due to some handling upgrades made between races. Also, Mather is getting used to racing a front-wheel-drive car and getting more comfortable with its handling quirks compared to rear-wheel-drive cars.
A new engine will soon be sourced and PMR hopes to be ready for the next race on July 6th. If anyone knows of a healthy 2.0L DOHC Neon engine, please let us know!
Thanks to CG-Lock and SeatSnug for their continued support. Also joining for the weekend were the Ohm family, who ended up helping out with car prep and even providing lunch on Saturday. Thanks, Ohms! And thanks to Half Baked Schemes Racing and Michael Occhipinti for the opportunity to race this season.
Ann Arbor, Michigan - May 5, 2013
Podium Finish for Phil Mather Racing!
Race # 1 of the 2013 Waterford Hills season is complete for Phil Mather Racing. This season, PMR has teamed up with Half Baked Schemes Racing to run in the Waterford Hills' SpecNeon class. The SpecNeon class utilizes 1996-1999 Dodge or Plymouth Neons that are all modified to the same set of rules.
Saturday marked the first race event of the season. PMR had difficult testing and qualifying sessions and only got minimal time with the new car due to overheating issues. After a radiator change and coolant flush, it was time to qualify on Saturday morning. On the warm-up lap of the qualifying session, the car began to overheat. Not wanting to start last, Mather did one flying lap to set a time, and pulled the car into the pits. He ended up qualifying second.
After a thrashing wrench session, it was time to get the car on grid for the race. However, now the car wouldn't start. The overheating engine killed the starter. So after a push start, Mather made it to grid on time. The race itself was fairly uneventful with Mather holding position in class throughout the race. His fastest lap was not far off of the leader (who was also last year's class champion).
However, it was a good indicator of how the car would race in the future. The racecar handled very well and had good power. There are several things that can currently be done to make it faster. This car was bought as a used racecar, and with every used car, there are some issues that need to be sorted out. But for a first race weekend in a new car, things went very well with indications pointing towards having a very fast racecar for the rest season.
The 2013 racing season is near and Phil Mather Racing is ready to roll! This year, Phil Mather is joining forces with Michael Occhipinti of Half Baked Schemes Racing. Mather will race Half Baked Racing's Spec Neon at Waterford Hills Raceway in Clarkston, Michigan, while Occhipinti will race Asphalt Modifieds at different venues around Michigan and New Jersey.
Also on the horizon for Phil Mather Racing is more driving instruction. Mather will join the Rally Sport Region Porsche Club for the fourth year, instructing at High Performance Driver Education (HPDE) events at Waterford Hills, Grattan Raceway, and Gingerman Raceway. Time permitting, he will be instructing with other clubs as well.
Last year, Mather joined Fastrak Exotic Driving Experience (www. fastrakexotics.com), the mid-west's only provider of exotic supercar driving experiences. Fastrak allows anyone the chance to drive an exotic car at speed in a fast and safe environment. Thrill rides with professional racecar drivers are also available to show you what supercars are all about.
November 29, 2012 - Orlando, Florida
Phil Mather will be in the Mechanical Simulation booth (#5723) at the 2012 Performance Racing Industry Trade Show November 30th - December 1st. Stop on by if you are at the show!
October 29, 2012 - Ann Arbor, Michigan
Join Phil Mather will be instructing with 6th Gear America
on November 11th at the Robert Bosch LLC Proving Grounds in Flat Rock, MI.
They have a special promotion for their Facebook fans! All fans will receive a free high speed passenger lap in the Deronda racecar when you book a driving experience. Simply, mention this offer when booking your experience.
Advanced bookings are encouraged to ensure availability. Call them at 855-6TH-GEAR (684-4327) or visit http://www.6thgearamerica.com/home
for more info.
Drive the car of your dreams!
We look forward to seeing you there!
July 7, 2012 - Ann Arbor, Michigan
Reminder: Phil Mather Racing's professional race debut at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course will be shown on the Velocity channel (http://velocity.discovery.com/videos/) Saturday, July 7 at noon EDT. Look for the Mazda Motorsports Hour listing. Phil is driving the red #95 CG-Lock / SeatSnug / Skip Barber Mazda MX-5.
June 10, 2012 - Lexington, Ohio
Phil Mather Racing Captures Second Place in Their First Professional Race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course!
Phil Mather joined the Skip Barber Racing School in their new for 2012 Mazdaspeed Pro Challenge Racing Series this past weekend at the world famous Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. He would be racing in the world's best-selling sports car, the Mazda MX-5.
There were four racecars in the Skip Barber Mazdaspeed Pro Challenge class that would be joining the 18 other Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup racecars on the track. There are some minor differences between the two groups of racecars. The Cup cars run a different exhaust and suspension package than the Skip Barber cars. They are also allowed to make more adjustments and run fresh BF Goodrich g-force R1 tires for qualifying and the race, where the Skip Barber cars are only allowed tire pressure and damper adjustments, and must run the same tires all weekend.
Mather arrived to Mid-Ohio on Thursday for testing. This allowed him to get used to the racecar and track conditions. Saturday's qualifying brought very different track conditions with much less grip. Phil qualified third, less than a second behind second place, and about half a second ahead of fourth place.
Sunday brought 90 degree temperatures and bright sun for the race. The Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup races begin with standing starts. This means that after the pace lap, the cars line up on the front straight. Starting lights illuminate and then shut off, signaling the start of the 45 minute race. Mather got an excellent start, and made it cleanly through turn one. He was able to out brake his competition into turn two, running almost three wide. Ahead, several cars made contact, sending two sideways. Mather was able to take evasive action and avoid any contact and found himself in the lead! He was able to maintain the lead for another lap before being passed, dropping to third in class. At about the half-way point, the leaders were still in sight. The second place car went wide and into the grass allowing Mather to jump into second place. First place was too far ahead at this point to pass unless the leader made a mistake, which never came. Phil was able to drive consistent laps for the rest of the race, finishing second place in class and 14th overall!
"I'd like to thank the Skip Barber coaches and mechanics for all of their help this weekend," Mather said. "Mazda has put together a great program for up and coming professional drivers to be able to show their talent in front of thousands of racing fans. I'd also like to thank CG-Lock, SeatSnug, and Mechanical Simulation for their continued support. I was able to handle the heat today thanks to my training at The Health and Fitness Center at Washtenaw Community College and my trainer Keith, and Kart2Kart has helped me keep my driving fast and consistent. And thank you to all of my friends and family for your support, especially my girlfriend Mandy and the Ohm family for making the trip out to the track to cheer me on!"
The race from Mid-Ohio is scheduled to be televised July 7th at noon on the Velocity Channel.
Phil Mather Racing will be instructing throughout the summer with local car clubs. PMR wants to continue on the professional circuit, but we need help. If you know of any companies that want to advertise on national television and in front of thousands of race fans, please contact us at email@example.com!
June 3, 2012 - Ann Arbor, Michigan
Phil Mather Racing Will Make their Professional Racing Debut Next Weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course!
June 10th will be Phil Mather's professional race debut. He will be racing the Skip Barber MAZDASPEED PRO Challenge held in conjunction with the Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup and the EMCO Gears Classic at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, and looking to make a positive first impression in the series. "I'm very happy to be racing with Skip Barber once again, this time at the pro level. The equalized racecars ensure that the best driver will shine at the end of the race. I am looking forward to the competition. It has taken me a while to finally get to the professional level, but I am positive I will be able to display my talent in a racecar, this time for race fans at the track, and on TV."
Joining Phil Mather Racing (PMR) this weekend will be long time partners CG-Lock, SeatSnug, and Mechanical Simulation. Kart2Kart and The Animal Aid Foundation will be supporting PMR as well. There is still space available for advertisers. Any interested companies looking to partner with PMR, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
May 16, 2012 - Ann Arbor, Michigan
Information for the Emco Gears Classic can be found here: http://www.midohio.com/Schedule/EMCO-Gears-Classic-2012.
April 25, 2012 - Ann Arbor, Michigan
Phil Mather Racing is Going Pro!
Phil Mather has obtained his SCCA Pro racing license and signed up for his first professional race. June 8th will mark Mather's debut as a professional racecar driver at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. He will be competiting in the Skip Barber MAZDASPEED PRO Challenge, held in conjunction with the Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup.
In 2012, Skip Barber Racing Schools (skipbarber.com
) partnered with the Playboy Cup series to create a new professional racing class. Mather will be driving racecars similar to those he competed in when racing with the Skip Barber series in 2009.
Mather last raced with the Skip Barber series in September 2010 at Mid-Ohio where he captured 2nd and 1st place finishes in the weekend's two races.
Joining Mather will be partners CG-Lock
, and Mechanical Simulation
The races will be televised on the Velocity network July 7th, at noon.
Stay tuned for more updates!
October 29, 2011 - Alton, Virginia -
Mather and Team Long Road Racing Take the Victory at VIR!
Phil Mather teamed up with Long Road Racing
and co-drivers Tyler Cooke and Jonathon Czarny to take on the SCCA Charge of the Headlight Brigade 13-Hour Endurance Race at Virginia International Raceway.
To win an endurance race takes teamwork, great strategy, smart, fast drivers, and some great luck. The team had the winning formula from the start, and some good luck along the way!
The event started on Friday with a cold and wet qualifying session. Mather was able to get the number 74 Long Road Racing SpecMiata up to second place in class. Cooke then cemented outside pole position during his qualifying stint.
The race started on Saturday at 9:20 a.m. with light rain falling on the raceway and temperatures in the low 40s. Cooke started the race, Mather would run the second driving stint, and Czarny would drive third in the rotation. After Cooke's first hour and a half stint, Mather jumped in the car. Traffic was thick on the 3.27 mile racetrack. 59 cars started the race, 19 of them in the SpecMiata class. After Mather's stint, the team was running in the top 5.
Each driver raced three stints in the event. During his time in the racecar, Mather witnessed spins, blown engines, and a couple of wrecks. Mather and his teammates knew that in order to finish first, you first must finish.
With about an hour left in the race, the Long Road Racing SpecMiata was running second place, four laps ahead of third place, and 5 laps down from first place. A full course caution waved for cars off track and reports of oil on the racing surface; the lead SpecMiata had blown its engine. This was the luck the Long Road Racing team needed, enabling them to make one last pit stop for fuel and a driver change. All they had to do was finish.
The last hour of an endurance race is agonizing. Every sound the car makes, every vibration, the smell of oil and fuel, must be ignored and the car must be driven to the finish line. Czarny had the honor of taking the checkered flag on track, bringing the racecar home 9th overall and 1st in class!
Thank you goes out to Long Road Racing for providing a great car and incredible crew. The pit stops were fast throughout the whole race and the car was prepped extremely well to survive the 13 hour event. The team's hospitality was also superb, keeping us warm on the very cold nights, and well fed throughout the weekend.
Thanks to Phil's co-drivers, Tyler Cooke and Jonathan Czarny for driving fast, and bringing the car home in one piece. The car finished the race without missing a beat.
"I would like to thank CG-Lock (www.CG-Lock.com) and SeatSnug (www.SeatSnug.com)for their support throughout my racing career. Also thanks to Kart2Kart (www.Kart2Kart.com) and the Rally Sport Region Porsche Club for the seat time that allowed me to practice on track, keeping my reflexes sharp. Thanks also go out to my trainer Keith C. at Washtenaw Community College Health and Fitness Center for keeping me in the excellent physical condition needed for endurance racing; and to the physical therapy staff at East Stadium PT for helping my shoulder recover from old injuries."
"Also, special thanks to my Dad, Bruce Mather, for all of his continued support and making the trip to VIR for the weekend. It was great to have him there to be able to see me earn my first endurance race victory."
Condolences go out to the family and friends of fellow racing driver Mark Hillestad who passed away from a medical condition while racing at the event.
Follow Phil Mather Racing at www.PhilMatherRacing.com or here on Facebook .
9/17/11 - Adrian, Michigan -
Phil Mather Signs with Long Road Racing for the SCCA Charge of the Headlight Brigade 13 Hour Endurance Race
Phil Mather will once again team up with Long Road Racing for the October 29th SCCA charge of the Headlight Brigade 13 Hour Endurance Race. Phil and two other drivers (to be announced) will be sharing a car for the event and shooting for the SpecMiata class (if not overall) win!
4/20/11 - Millville, NJ
Phil Mather made his endurance racing debut and teamed up with Long Road Racing for 2nd Annual Devil in the Dark 12 hr Endurance Race at New Jersey Motorsports Park. Co-Drivers were Steve Phillips and Tyler Cooke.
Long Road Racing put together a very fast car for the race and the three drivers were leading the SpecMiata class by four laps and were third overall at the 7.5 hour mark. Unfortunately, a broken ball joint and hub forced the car into the pits for repairs for a half hour. During Mather's second stint in the car, some electrical gremlins hit and caused more pit stops. The team finished the race a respectible 5th in class and 14th overall.
Thanks to Long Road Racing, CG-Lock, SeatSnug, Tyler and Steve for an excellent race!