In 2009, the Pro Formula Mazda Championship entered its nineteenth season as one of North America's
premier open-wheel driver development series. Series graduates have gone on to race in F1,
Indy Cars, NASCAR, American Le Mans and Grand-Am.
In 2007, Mazda introduced their company-sponsored 'motorsports ladder' from karting to Champ Car. This year's Pro Formula Mazda series champion will receive a Mazda-sponsored full-season drive for 2010 in the next series up the ladder; the Cooper Tires Presents the Champ Car Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda. And the 2009 winner of the Atlantic Championship gets a $2 million sponsorship to help them move up to Champ Car.
The Pro Formula Mazda is manufactured by the Van Diemen / Elan Motorsports Technologies group. The chassis is a carbon-fiber tub with fiberglass bodywork. The front and rear suspension is a pushrod setup with two-way adjustable shock absorbers. Stopping the Pro Formula Mazda are four-piston calipers with vented rotors. It is powered by a 240-horsepower Renesis Mazda engine, also used in the road-going version of the Mazda RX-8. Bolted to the motor is a six-speed sequential transmission with a no-lift shift.
In 2009, there were some upgrades made to the car. The Modifications, including new wings, shock absorbers and suspension rockers, are designed to increase the car's aerodynamic efficiency and top speed while improving engine cooling; in addition, it will be easier for drivers and their engineers to arrive at the best setup for each track. The cumulative effect of the upgrades will be to increase both top speed and cornering speed, reduce maintenance costs and enhance mechanical reliability.
The opening round of the 2009 Pro Formula Mazda Championship was held at Sebring International Raceway and ended in mid-October at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
In addition to the overall title, championships were on the line for:
Round ten of the 2009 Pro Formula Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear was conducted at the 40th running of the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres. The forty-five-minute contest was held on the eleven-turn 1.53-mile temporary street circuit.
|Grabbing the victory at Trois-Rivieres with a last lap pass was Alex Ardoin. Ardoin put the No. 51 JDC Motorsport Pro Formula Mazda with backing from Oral & Facial Surgery Center third on the starting grid. During the race, he moved into the second spot. A final full course caution setup a one lap shootout. Ardoin was able to get by the leader, Rusty Mitchell, in corner one for his second series win.|
|Rusty Mitchell, the driver of the No. 66 Mitchell Motorsports Pro Formula Mazda, set a new qualifying record to capture the pole position at Trois-Rivieres. Mitchell’s strategy for the race was to distance himself from the rest of the field. He was able to open a gap during the contest. However, a last lap restart put Alex Ardoin on his gearbox. Ardoin took the lead in the first turn relegating Mitchell to a second place finish.|
|Series veteran Joel Miller was having a difficult season, however the situation would look much better at Trois-Rivieres. The 2007 Skip Barber Pro Series champion and 2008 MAZDASPEED Motorsports Driver Development Ladder scholarship winner, turned the fifth fastest time in qualifying. Miller drove an aggressive race in the No. 2 Andersen Racing Pro Formula Mazda and earned his third podium result of the season.|
|The most impressive performance of the weekend came from Quebec’s Mikael Grenier. The 16-year old karting champion has two podium finishes. Grenier drove the No. 17 NAPA Autoparts / CAA-Quebec / HS Telecom / Allied Pro Formula Mazda but the Andersen Racing team struggled most of the event and he started a the back of the grid. During the race, Grenier charged to the front and finished fourth.|
|Adam Christodoulou drove the No. 11 JDC Motorsports Pro Formula Mazda. The 2008 European Formula Renault champion had wins at Sebring and Miller Motorsports Park and was second in the title chase, just nineteen points behind the leader, Peter Dempsey. Christodoulou was gridded fourth for the contest and finished fifth, while Dempsey was thirteenth. The results moved Christodoulou within ten markers of Dempsey.|
|1||3||Alex Ardoin||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|2||1||Rusty Mitchell||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|3||5||Joel Miller||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|4||19||Mikael Grenier||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|5||4||Adam Christodoulou||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|6||10||Anders Krohn||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|7||8||David Ostella||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|8||12||Michael Furfari||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|9||15||Sean Burstyn||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|10||6||Denis Navarro||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|11||21||Michael Guasch||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|12||32||J.W. Roberts||Pro Formula Mazda||36||-|
|13||5||Peter Dempsey||Pro Formula Mazda||35||-|
|14||16||Conor Daly||Pro Formula Mazda||33||-|
|15||30||Walt Bowlin||Pro Formula Mazda||33||-|
|16||25||Toshi Deki||Pro Formula Mazda||26||-|
|17||10||Kevin Toledo||Pro Formula Mazda||22||-|
|18||8||Jorge Goncalvez||Pro Formula Mazda||20||-|
|19||1||Richard Kent||Pro Formula Mazda||0||-|
|20||7||Caio Lara||Pro Formula Mazda||0||-|
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