For sports car fans, perhaps the most significant presence at this year’s New York Auto Show was Mazda’s display commemorating the 25th anniversary of the worlds most faithful roadster. A collection of significant models was on hand that included some of the little car’s history.
At the front of the line were production numbers 14 and 15, cars that were on the show stand at the 1989 Chicago Auto Show. Who could have guessed what an impact the tiny machine would have on motoring history.
In the next row sat #17, the first Miata race car. With 6,500 racing miles on the odometer, this is the first of over 5,000 Miatas that have been raced over the years. More than any other model. It truly changed the face of auto racing.
Racing cars is about much more than just being able to drive fast. To be a real racer requires a mastery of what some of us call racecraft. A mixture of car control, aggression, vision and even networking along with more than a little bit of luck. Continental Tire Series driver Steven McAleer has all of the above in spades.
McAleer’s C.J. Wilson Racing Mazda MX-5 had to start at the back of the grid in this year’s Sebring race due to a tech infraction. In the first lap alone, the driver passed a rather impressive 15 cars. How he does it is a combination of all of the qualities I listed above, not the least of which is vision and networking.
Watch how McAleer is constantly looking at all three mirrors to evaluate the threats and open spaces to the side and behind, while also looking ahead for breaks in traffic that haven’t even happened yet. While reading traffic, the driver is also communicating with other drivers, using hand signals to get them to help out in setting up a draft. This guy is a relationship manager of the first order!
Source YouTube via RACER