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DNF at first race of Formula Dodge National Championship

Sebring, FloridaOn the weekend of March 13, 14, and 15, David Jurca yet again traveled to Sebring, Florida. This time to compete in round one of the Formula Dodge National Championship presented by RACER magazine. The event was held in conjunction with the 12 hours of Sebring American LeMans Series race.

To start off the race weekend, Jurca would participate in the first of two qualifying sessions. He would qualify a respectable 5th out of 26 racers being one of, if not the least experienced formula car driver there.

"Matos took the top spot in the closing moments of the 30-mintute session after trading the position with Phillippe Gelinas several times. Gelinas, of Grand Mere, Quebec, ended the session in second, with Ward Imrie of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada taking the third spot. Fourth in the session was Salvador Duran of Mexico City, Mexico, with Michael Valiante protege David Jurca, of Federal Way, Washington slotting into fifth. "

Qualifying session 2 was not as fortunate as session one. Jurca was unable to get a clear lap and although he improved his lap time from session one, he still dropped down to ninth out of the 26 drivers at the race. A solid top ten starting position for the half hour race.

"Lining up alongside Matos in Friday’s race will be fellow Barber-Champ Car Scholarship driver Philippe Gelinas of Grand Mere, Quebec. Brian Frisselle improved on his first qualifying effort to move himself to third on the grid, with Gerardo Bonilla taking fourth. Ben Freudenberg of North Bend, Oregon, will start fifth alongside of Mexican Salvador Duran. Joe D’Agostino and Matt Jaskol, both of whom won scholarships in the Barber-Champ Car Karting Run Off in January, will make up the fourth row, with David Jurca and Ward Imrie slotting into the fifth row."

Things took a turn for the worse on lap two of the final race. After executing a pass for 8th position, Jurca was hit from behind by a fellow driver, consequently ending the race for the other driver and knocking David down approximately eight or nine positions. By lap five, Jurca had already made six positions and was passing for 10th when he made an unfortunate mistake. As he was braking on the inside of another car, he misjudged his braking distance and hit the car just in front of him, ending hopes of finishing his first national race.

Jurca had this to say after the race: "I was very dissapointed not to have finished my first national race. I was aiming for a top five position and feel that I would have attained my goal had I not been hit from behind on lap two. Especially since the 8th place qualifier won the race and the 10th place qualifier finished fifth; it seems as though it would have been possible. But that's racing and once I was down in 16th or 17th spot, I started passing everywhere I could, hoping to make it up to at least the top ten. Unfortunately, one of my passes was misjudged and I hit the driver in front of me. It was a mistake on my part, but also a learning experience as I was quite unfamiliar in executing passes with these Formula Dodge racecars. I will take what I have learned at this race and turn it into something positive at my next race in Virginia. I would also just like to thank my sponsors Serengeti Design Group, Best Ceramic, European Tile Inc., Skip Barber, Italian Motors, ITALKART, Kuzzins Kustoms, Bell Helmets, and Speedware Motorsports for their continued support. A special thanks goes to Speedware Motorsports for providing me with a Sparco racing suit, shoes, and gloves at the last minute."