MONTEREY, Calif. – The second half of the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires was extremely positive for Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing and their rookie driver Nico Jamin, as the 20-year-old Frenchman capped the season at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca last weekend (September 9-11) with a trio of top-five finishes. Riding the momentum from his sweep of the doubleheader at Mid-Ohio in August, Jamin was ready to fight in the season-ending tripleheader.
Jamin finished fourth in the opening race of the weekend, and then charged to third in the second race of the season finale. The reigning Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda champion and current Mazda Scholarship driver then backed it up with a fourth place result in the last race of the season. These consistent results ran Jamin’s streak of top-five finishes to eight, pushing that statistic to 13 total on the season. After a steady campaign of development and an impressive late-season push, Jamin ended the championship third in overall standings.
“We have enjoyed two seasons with Nico, he’s an outstanding driver and a part of our family now,” commented Nicholas and Dominic Cape. “Our third place in the Championship is a great result for all the hard work everyone has put in. We can’t thank our team members enough for their desire and the commitment they put in on a daily basis and we look forward to 2017.”
In 2015, Jamin and Cape capped the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires in style, winning both races of the doubleheader at Mazda Raceway. This time around, Jamin has just won his first two Pro Mazda events at Mid-Ohio, and was ready to fight for third overall in the championship. Nico found speed in each practice session and qualified his ‘Soul Red’ Mazdaspeed entry in fifth to begin the tripleheader, which included a third race to make up for the cancelled race from Iowa Speedway.
Jamin showed his poise and maturity in all three races, avoiding the opening corner chaos to emerge unscathed on each occasion, setting up for a strong result. In the opening race on Saturday afternoon, he ran a flawless race to maintain a small gap to a pair of challenges, finishing fourth. In the second race of the tripleheader, Nico expertly avoided a spinning Pato O’Ward after he and his Team Pelfrey teammate got together, and slipped through to take up station in third. Once again, his experience was on display as he brought the Cape #2 home for third, his sixth podium finish of the year. Jamin finished up the season with a fourth in Race #3, extending his streak of top-five finishes to an incredible eight races.
When the dust had settled, Cape Motorsports and Nico has completed their late-season rise up the championship standings, overtaking their competition for third overall in the series. Jamin’s championship podium joins the team’s 1-2 finish in the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda by Anthony Martin and Parker Thompson to complete yet another stellar season for the Florida-based team. The Cape brothers are excited to take delivery of the new USF-17 race car that will debut next year, and they’re planning a two-car effort in Pro Mazda, as well.
DRIVER PERFORMANCE / QUOTES
MAZDA RACEWAY LAGUNA SECA – MONTEREY, CA
SEPTEMBER 9-11, 2016
Qualifying: 5th – 1:24.610
Race 1: Start – 5th / Finish – 4th
Race 2: Start – 5th / Finish – 3rd
Race 2: Start – 4th / Finish – 4th
Driver Quote: “I had higher expectations for the last meeting of the season at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, especially after the amazing performance we did in Ohio. We struggled a little bit all weekend with the set-up of the car in a very slippery track, and while we couldn't quite get the mechanical grip we needed, we still got a podium and secured third in the championship. I'm proud of all the work we did this season to get two wins, six podiums and a championship podium. I have to thank the whole Cape Motorsports team for what they've done for me over the past two years. I learned a lot from the hard times we've had this season, and it made me a better and stronger driver. I definitely feel ready for the next step.”
About Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing: Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing was formed in 2010 as a partnership between two successful racing entities. With leadership from brothers Nicholas and Dominic Cape, and along with Wayne Taylor and his organization in Indianapolis, the team campaigns cars in the Cooper Tires Presents the USF2000 National Championship Powered by Mazda and the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires. The goal of Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing is to provide unmatched driver development both on and off the track. It is difficult for a young driver to jump into a professional series and win, regardless of talent. Through coaching and mentoring, Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing provides young drivers with as much knowledge of motorsports to become as successful as possible.