Zack Barnes, SCCA announcer from Houston, TX and Richard “Max” Hayter aka the “cheeky Brit” from Southern California will be calling the action in DS and DSL this year at the SCCA National Championships in Lincoln, NE.
Zack Barnes brings his Texas Region wit along with some great banter for midwest and east coast DS Drivers. Barnes has been autocrossing since mid-2003 and is no newcomer to the National stage….in fact it will be his twelfth year attending and has not missed one one since 2005. Barnes has two trophies (2007 FP, 2015 CS), and has driven in in DP (total in 6 times in 3 cars), CS (twice), FP, CP, STX, and will be back in DP again in a 4th car in the class. DS has 30 registered entrants this year (six more than last year) and it will be battle of ’15/’16 WRXs base editions and ’16 Premiums. 2016 WRX Premiums have 18×8.5″ wheels as standard allowing competitors run up to a 275/35/18 tire without any modification. Dennis Sparks is the crowd favorite to win here, with Kit Gauthier in second and Chris Dvorak in third spot based on the number of votes. Sportscar foreshadowed Gauthier to win DS, but the class is unpredictable and well the weather is always a factor for the longer run groups. Will a Mini have it’s hay day amongst the brute force of the WRX? Only time will tell!
Max Hayter, aka the “Cheeky Brit on the Mic” is announcing for DSL this year and will be detailing the battle in a hotly contested six driver field. While Sportscar last year said that DSL “may or may not be interesting”, 2015 DSL National Champion Kristen Acharya proved that it was anything but, winning a National Championship on her first attempt. Slated be the Sportscar favorite this year, Acharya will be facing worthy adversaries. SCCA Forum community votes show that Christy Carlson is the crowd favorite, Jessy Gauthier in second, and with Julie Heaton and Acharya slated for 3rd place with tied votes at time of writing. The battle between the larger vs smaller tires sizes will be also be prevalent here, but Towns/Sparks seem to get the job just fine without the larger wheel options. Do not count ANY lady attending the Championships this year out. With DSL driving in the first run group on both days (Tuesday and Wednesday), expect these ladies to fight a tough battle amongst each other. We look forward to Hayter bringing the action to life. Max Hayter has been autocrossing since November 2002 and has attended every National Championship since 2006. Amongst many local trophies, Hayter has two STU Pro Solo National Championships and One DS National Championship. He will be competing in STX this year driving the FRSport sponsored BRZ.
What do the community votes and being the Sportscar favorite mean? Absolutely nothing, because as we all know anything can happen in Lincoln!