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« on: September 14, 2015, 07:47:36 AM »

Reid Arnold And Connor Wagland Claim Championships – Ben Hurst Wins Rookie of the Year

BOWMANVILLE, ON (September 13, 2015) – Michael Adams wins a thriller of a season finale at the BEMC Indian Summer Trophy Races earlier today.


The rains were coming down hard all day but it didn’t dampen the enthusiasm behind the wheel as Courtice, Ontario’s Michael Adams, Ottawa, Ontario’s Zacharie Robichon and Australian native Scott Andrews put on a wet weather racing showcase.


Robichon started from the pole and led into corner one. Adams spun his tires allowing Andrews through but he managed to hold off the ambitious “B” class pole sitter Craig Willis.


A little further back in the field there was immediate action. Gord Ross had a quick spin but barely broke momentum and continued. Ben Hurst and Andre du Preez tangled and spun but both got going quickly.


The lead trio then set their sites on each other, making several passes per lap and all taking turns at the lead for the entire race distance until the safety car was dispatched with 5 minutes left for 2 separate incidents involving Connor Wagland and Amy Castell.


The race ended under the safety car period with Adams’ Britain West prepared and FEL Drives sponsored Mygale Honda in front followed by Robichon and Andrews. Reid Arnold and Gord Ross would round out the top 5.


“That has to be one of the best races I have ever been involved in,” said a jubilant Adams. “I botched the start and things just got manic from there. There were so many passes I can’t even keep the story straight to be honest. Zach (Robichon) and Scott (Andrews) were awesome to race with. They race so hard and don’t give you an inch but race so clean, we were just hammering on each other. It was just incredible.”


The “B” Class race was all Craig Willis. He started from pole and ran with the A Class lead pack for a good part of the race. Graham Lobban ran for much of the race in a strong 2nd place but spun and suffered damage to his car, ending his day early. Graham’s brother Keith benefited from the spin and finished 2nd. Byron Leis enjoyed a career day and finished on the final step of the podium.

Willis was also the recipient of the popular, traditional Indian headdress handed out annually to the winner largest class of the BEMC weekend.


The championship points were also decided today. The “A” Class was controlled for most of the season by Keswick, Ontario’s Reid Arnold with only Andre duPreez with a mathematical shot at denying him the championship.


Arnold came into the season doing a last minute deal to race with Brian Graham Racing, the Piper dealer for Canada and a multi-championship winning team. The success was instant for the sophomore driver and he blossomed under the tutelage of the veteran team owner.


He had a solid, confidence inspiring outing in the very first weekend and that set the tone for a consistent season of top 5 finishes allowing him to lock the championship up in the penultimate round in his Optimum Edge sponsored Piper Honda


“I’m really excited to get this championship,” said Arnold. “When I came to BGR I was struggling with some confidence issues and not always knowing what to do in certain situations but they really helped me to mature as a driver. They are a really professional team and coached me along. My race today was good. I could relax knowing I had the championship and had a lot of fun racing with Willis in the rain.”


Dundas, Ontario’s Connor Wagland came into the weekend with a good lead in the points and had the objective of playing it fairly conservative, trying to get the championship locked down on the Saturday. He did just enough to do that, securing his 2nd title in a row.


Wagland drove his Burloak Cycle / Jones Tools sponsored Van Diemen Ford to 3 victories this season but was haunted late in the championship by Graham Lobban who had strong runs with several wins in the 2nd half of the season.


“In the first half of the season we were messing around with some different setups on our car and they weren’t really working like we had planned,” said Wagland. “We were in the lead at that point and decided to go back to what we knew and really make a run for the back to back title. It worked out great and we locked it up on Saturday so we could go and have fun today. Unfortunately I ended up in the wall late in the race but what an amazing season.”


Ben Hurst came to the championship with only a racing school and some arrive-and-drive karting under his belt. He also had a rollover on his 2nd weekend of racing but didn’t let any of that deter him from his goal, winning the popular Rookie-of-the-Year honour in his BGR prepared Piper Honda.

“I had a rough start to the season with the rollover and not knowing what to expect,” said Hurst. “That crash could have slowed me down but it had the reverse effect. I kind of felt like crashing wasn’t a scary unknown anymore and I wasn’t nervous. From there I worked hard with my team analyzing data, watching videos, learning from my teammates. It has been an awesome experience and I can’t wait to get next season started.


Over 40 drivers from across North America competed in Toyo Tires F1600 Championship across 6 events and on 3 very challenging circuits. Announcements on the 2016 schedule will be made in the coming weeks.



SERIES CONTACT: Jason Sharpe, (416) 557-5451 or, Twitter: @jasonsharpe


If photographs are required please contact Jason Sharpe (416) 557-5451 or


Photos by Michael Haley


The Toyo Tires F1600 Championship Series is the premiere open wheel series in Ontario, sanctioned by CASC Ontario Region and proudly supported by Toyo Tires, Honda HPD, Heather’s Heros, Cove Dentistry, Stäubli, Lincoln Electric and MK Technologies. The series is comprised of a six event, double-header format and competes at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Shannonville Motorsport Park and Calabogie Motorsports Park.

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« on: September 14, 2015, 07:47:36 AM »


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