Congrats to Ken Zalner on the 2010 WDCR SCCA MARRS SM Championship

October 10th, 2010
3:07 pm

As we approached the last race of the year there was still a three way battle for the top spot in SM between Ken Zalner, Scott Brunk and Kevin Kopp. The pressure was on all three drivers to perform at the top of their game this weekend.

The weekend started with Ken dropping a valve in the engine of the #73 SM on the 3rd lap of the first session of practice on Friday. Bret and Brian worked on the car until 6:00 pm to install a new engine and chase down two different water leaks and a defective pilot bearing in the transmission before getting the car rolling again, and onto the dyno it rolled.

The mechanical problems prevented Ken from running any sessions on practice day but the car was ready for qualifying… or so we thought. One lap into qualifying, the car shut off climbing the hill in Turn 9. Had the car shut off anywhere else on the track we would have completely missed qualifying altogether and would have had to start last. Ken carried the momentum and quickly ducked into the pits where TJ and Bret ran to see what they could find under the hood. After finding a broken wire on the cam sensor, TJ stripped it with his teeth and jammed it in the connector. Ken fired the car up and took off as we hoped for the best. Ken did manage to get in three hot laps and qualified 4th. After qualifying T.J. properly fixed the broken wire.

In the Saturday 10 lap race, Ken started 4th and pulled up 2 positions to finish 2nd, right behind teammate Scott Brunk, in an intense battle against the cars of Kopp, Jacobs and Collins who teamed up against Ken. The points battle was still on.

In the Sunday race, Ken pulled out a 3rd place finish but that wasn’t enough to determine the winner of the season. With Ken and Kevin tied with exactly 2500 points each a tie breaker was needed. It started as who had more wins (5 each, tie again) and then moved to 2nd place finishes (again, 3 each) and finally down to 3rd place finishes in which Ken had a 3 to 1 advantage on Kevin. In the end, 3rd place on Sunday was enough to win the 2010 MARRS SM championship.

Ken won his 10th career championship on 10/10/10. It was by far and away the closest championship battle we have ever been a part of making also the sweetest one as well. This whole season was made possible by the extremely hard work and entire team effort of RP Performance and Performance Auto Works!

4 MARRS Championships in 2009

October 11th, 2009
6:57 pm

After a dominating season, RP Performance and partners Performance Auto Works have locked up 4 championships in the Mid-Atlantic Road Racing Series for 2009. We conquered in SM, SSM, ITA and SRX7, bringing RP’s total up to 26 championships in 15 years of competition.

The Zalner brothers, Ken and Brian, finished in 1st and 2nd place respectively in SM giving Ken his 9th championship in 10 years. Scott Brunk claimed the championship in SSM and captured a new track record at Summit Point Raceway this weekend at the season finale with a blistering time of 1:28.052.

Phenom sophomore season driver Brian Price won the ITA championship in his SM Miata and capped off his season with a pair of wins on the weekend. As if the ITA championship was not enough, Brian also managed to bring it home in 4th place in the SM standings as well.

SRX-7 had a hotly contested battle between RP drivers “F1″ Al Gervais and Dave Ade. In the end, it was Dave Ade emerging victoriously as SRX-7’s newest champion. Al brought it home in 2nd place and rookie sensation Kevin Hutchens rounded out the top 3 for a total RP Performance podium sweep in the highly competitive SRX-7 class.

RP Performance would like to send out a special thank you to all of its drivers and fans for the continued support that our race team has received and continues to receive on an ongoing basis throughout the years.

Thank You!!!

MARRS7 – HOT at Summit Point

August 10th, 2009
9:18 am

It was quite a hot weekend at Summit Point but the RP team pulled through for a few wins and Bret even got the chance to get out there and race in an ITA Miata. Bret locked in the pole position and won the race on Saturday and finished 2nd on Sunday’s race. Ken and Brian had a 2-3 and 1-2 finish in their SM races while Scott Brunk missed out on Saturday’s SSM race after his transmission got stuck in 3rd gear on the 2nd lap. Drop in a new transmission and fast-forward to Sunday… Scott fought hard for the entire race making his way up to 1st place for the SSM win. Kevin Hutchens decided to try his hand at rally-cross in his qualifying session on Saturday and luckily suffered only sheet metal damage that the RP team quickly hammered back into place.

MARRS4 @ Summit Point – May 30-31, 2009

May 21st, 2009
7:22 am

Saturday Ken had pole and I started 7th after a problem in qualifying with an air pocket in the cooling system necessitated ending my session after but only 4 laps… Ken finished 1st and I rallied back to a photo finish 3rd place finish…I missed 2nd place by .018… I lost at the loop but had it at the line, scoring is done at the loop.

Sunday Ken started from the pole…I started from 3rd….the accident involving Bret, Mike Collins and Brian Price resulted in a black flag all and the resetting of the field in original starting position. Bret was originally gridded second but since he couldn’t continue I assumed the 2nd place position for the regrid. Ken led every lap of the race and I had a hard fought battle with Kevin Kopp and pulled out the 2nd place finish at the end.

Both yellow RP Performance / Performance Auto works cars took top honors on Sunday in Spec Miata finishing 1st and 2nd. Sunday and 1st and 3rd Saturday.

NASA @ Summit Point – April 24-25, 2009

April 26th, 2009
1:52 pm

The first NASA event at Summit Point this year was a hot 95+ degree 40 min race. Bret got back out on track for some fun in between supporting two customers (an SM and HPDE driver). He drove the #72 rental car through traffic to 1st place finish after qualifying 3rd. He almost missed his chance to hug the NASA trophy girls (who smelled good) after he misread the last lap flag and slowed down into turn 1 only to realize the two cars behind him were still racing hard. He figured it out quickly and got back into it to keep the lead for the final lap, managing to be one of the few that was not lapped by the PT class cars.

RP Team Blog

contains the news and information you need to follow the SCCA and NASA race seasons for SM, SSM and SRX7.