The Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) introduced the Trans Am series in 1966.
The championship was created during the introduction of Detroit’s ‘American Pony Car’ period.
The Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro proved to be very popular with consumers and the best
way for manufacturers to demonstrate their potential was ‘To race on Sunday and sell on Monday.’
In 1966, vehicle classification and rules were based on the SCCA’s A and B Sedan amateur classes. A Sedan was called the Over 2.0-Liter category. The cars competing in the group were limited to a 5.0-liter engine and provided a platform to showcase the new ‘Pony Cars.’ The Under 2.0-Liter category included vehicles from BMW, Alfa Romero, British Leyland and Porsche.
The Trans Am series and its regulations have evolved over time. The championship has undergone changes to the race formats, vehicle eligibility and rules governing the cars.
Trans Am rules require that vehicles be constructed with a purpose-built tube frame chassis. The top chassis builders include Riley & Scott, Roush, Weaver, Selix-Weaver, Hoerr, Rocketsports and Pratt & Miller Engineering. The bodies are made of composites, such as carbon fiber, Kevlar and fiberglass. The rules stipulate that the cars should maintain the recognizable external features of the manufacturer's model while providing flares necessary to keep the tires inside the bodywork. SCCA Pro Racing uses body templates to ensure the shape of cars is within designated tolerances. Cars are required to use the stock windshield or an approved alternative, which has to be mounted in the original location and at the original angle. The rules also dictate the use of the stock taillights, which are often the only production parts on the vehicles. The popular models are the Chevrolet Corvette, Panoz Esperante and Jaguar XKR; however, other vehicles eligible for the series include the Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang. Car styles cannot be more than five years old. All cars are required to use an American-based engine. Eight combinations of body/year, cubic inch, and induction types are approved for the series. The grouping selected by the team will determine the vehicle’s minimum weight. A 2001 body style with a carbureted 311-cu.in. must at least tip the scales at least at 2,600-pounds. The fuel injected version is required to add an additional 50-pounds. At the other end of the spectrum are cars prepared to SCCA GT1 rules with 1998-99 body style and a carbureted 335 or 358-cu.in. They must weigh a minimum of 2,750-pounds.
As the primary sponsor, all competitors must use the designated BF Goodrich Tires racing slick.
The twelve race season begins on April 7 in Miami and ends on October 27 at Virginia International Raceway.
Mosport International Raceway hosted round two of the 2002 BFGoodrich Tires Trans-Am championship, which was the weekend's feature event. The race was forty-one-laps around the 2.459-mile, ten-turn road course.
|The start of round two for the 2002 Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires Cup at Mosport International Raceway. Leading the field into corner one is the pole-sitter, Butch Leitzinger, in the No. 88 Tommy Bahama’s Chevrolet Corvette. Behind Leitzinger is the No. 64 Jaguar XKR driven by the third-fastest qualifier, Johnny Miller and the other front-row starter, Boris Said, in the No. 33 Panoz Esperante.|
|Trans Am veteran Boris Said made his series debut in 1994. This season Said is campaigning the No. 33 Panoz Esperante for the ACS Express Racing team. In the opening round at Long Beach, he finished second. Said was the second-fastest qualifier at Mosport but dropped to third place at the start. He assumed the lead on lap-27, after his mandatory stop, and captured the victory. It was the first Trans-Am win for Panoz.|
|At the season opener, Johnny Miller battled with Paul Gentilozzi and Boris Said, earning a third-place result. The driver of the No. 64 Automation Direct Jaguar XKR qualified third fastest, his best starting position in six previous appearances at Mosport. Miller moved into second before the end of the first lap. However, the team’s strategy caused him to fall behind Said and finish second by a margin of 23.501-seconds.|
|Qualifying in the fourth position was Justin Bell driving the No. 40 XtremeLens Chevrolet Corvette. Bell was a beneficiary of the issues encountered by the pole-sitter, Butch Leitzinger, and finished in the third position. This was his first podium result since a victory in last year's season-ending event at Houston. However, it was his fifth podium result in the previous seven events, dating to a third-place finish at Portland last year.|
|Despite his professional sports car racing success, Butch Leitzinger was classified as a rookie in the Trans-Am series. In round two, he put the No. 88 Chevrolet Corvette on the pole but crashed before the end of the session. Repairs were made overnight and Leitzinger led the race until his mandatory stop. On his out lap, he went off at corner two and damaged the car, which resulted in an eighteenth place finish.|
|Last year at Long Beach, Lou Gigliotti collected his second series victory and ended 2001 with a sixth place in the championship. At the conclusion of the qualifying session at Mosport International Raceway, he was ninth fastest in the No. 28 LG Motorsport Chevrolet Corvette. Gigliotti advanced five positions during the race and earned a fourth-place - this was his third in the last four races.|
|After some contact in round one at Long Beach, Paul Gentilozzi won his first race of 2002. The stop at Mosport International Raceway wouldn’t go as well. The reigning race winner and defending series champion qualified fifth fastest. However, Gentillozi pitted the No. 3 Rocketsports Jaguar XKR on the pace lap and made a couple of more visits before the crew discovered a bad spark plug. He would finish tenth.|
|Rounding out the top-five was Randy Ruhlman. Ruhlman, a veteran of the Trans-Am series, has made over 100-starts. His best year was 1999, when he finished sixth in the championship. At Mosport, Ruhlman was gridded in the tenth spot driving the No. 49 Preformed Line Products sponsored Chevrolet Corvette. A couple of passes and the misfortunes of others contributed to his fifth-place finish.|
|The podium for round two of the 2002 Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires Cup at Mosport International Raceway. In the center and earning his fourth Trans-Am series victory is the winner, Boris Said. The win also gave Said the championship lead. Standing on the right side is the runner-up, Johnny Miller. This was Miller’s fourteenth consecutive top-ten finish. Completing the rostrum is Justin Bell.|
|1||2||Boris Said||Panoz Esperante||ACS Express||41|
|2||3||Johnny Miller||Jaguar XKR||Automation Direct||41|
|3||4||Justin Bell||Chevrolet Corvette||XtremeLens||41|
|4||9||Lou Gigliotti||Chevrolet Corvette||LG Motorsport||41|
|5||10||Randy Ruhlman||Chevrolet Corvette||Performed Line Products||41|
|6||7||Tomy Drissi||Jaguar XKR||Rocketsports||41|
|7||8||Stu Hayner||Chevrolet Corvette||Revolution Motorsports||41|
|8||20||Michael Lewis||Jaguar XKR||Amerisuites||40|
|9||14||Paul Fix II||Jaguar XKR||Classic Tube||40|
|10||5||Paul Gentilozzi||Jaguar XKR||Rocketsports||40|
|11||6||Tony Ave||Panoz Esperante||LAC Motorsports||39|
|12||11||Simon Gregg||Chevrolet Corvette||Derhaag Motorsports||39|
|13||15||Jerry Simmons||Ford Mustang||Too Fast Racing||39|
|14||19||Bobby Sak||Chevrolet Corvette||Revolution Motorsports||39|
|15||17||Craig Shafer||Chevrolet Camaro||Somerset Door & Column Co.||39|
|16||12||Peter Klutt||Jaguar XKR||Sunoco||39|
|17||16||Charlie Webster||Chevrolet Corvette||CJ Webster of Canada Ltd||39|
|18||1||Butch Leitzinger||Chevrolet Corvette||Tommy Bahama||38|
|19||21||Claudio Burtin||Panoz Esperante||Linex Spray-On||37|
|20||18||Joey Scarallo||Chevrolet Corvette||K & N Filters||35|
|21||22||Richard LaBarbara||Ford Mustang||International Union Painters||23|
|22||13||Bob Ruman||Chevrolet Corvette||McNichols||21|
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