LEXINGTON, Ohio – The pairing of French driver Nico Jamin and Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires powerhouse Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing has been a thing of beauty over the last two years at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Last season, Jamin swept all three races of the USF2000 tripleheader at the challenging 2.258-mile, 13-turn circuit and he extended that streak this past weekend when he scored his first-ever Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires victory on Saturday morning (July 30). The reigning USF2000 champion, who runs the Soul Red #2 Mazda-sponsored scholarship car, came back later in the day to win his second series race, sweeping the weekend to stretch his run to five straight races at Mid-Ohio.
“Nico has been coming up to speed steadily through the year in our Pro Mazda and we learned a great deal at our test here back in June,” offered Dominic and Nicholas Cape, team owners. “Using the data we collected and the set-up we put together from the test, Nico was so impressive all weekend. He didn’t make a single mistake and he was aggressive when he needed to be. These wins are great for the entire team.”
As stated, Cape Motorsports enjoyed a very successful test at Mid-Ohio with Jamin back in June, and the momentum gained from that outing was visible at both Road America and Toronto, where Nico posted three consecutive podium results. The full effect of the test was shown this past weekend as Nico qualified on pole during the timed session on Friday, laying down a lap of 1:18.1385 to nip point leader Aaron Telitz by 0.06 seconds. It was only the beginning.
The Pro Mazda schedule positioned both races of the Mid-Ohio doubleheader on Saturday, the first coming early in the morning at 8:35 am. Jamin was flawless in his handling of the green flag start on the frontstretch in front of pit lane, leading the field out of the opening corner and holding off all charges through the first two overtaking zones on the track; the Keyhole and the end of the backstraight at Turn 4. Nico would lead flag-to-flag to garner his first series victory, extending his win streak at Mid-Ohio to four, posting the fast lap of the race to add an exclamation point to the end of a very impressive statement. Jamin crossed the finish line over five seconds ahead of Telitz.
The track was much different for Race 2, which took place at 6:00 pm after a full day of on-track action that included two sessions for the Verizon IndyCar Series, and weather was also beginning to move in. Jamin started second in the last race of the day, but motivated by his earlier victory and his understanding that Telitz was in championship-mode, the 21-year-old attacked aggressively and took the lead with a strong inside move at the Keyhole. With light rain falling, and eventually escalating, Jamin led the field to a full course-yellow that saw the cars remain on-track while the rain subsided. Once the track was once again dry enough to race on the Cooper slicks, Jamin dominated the restart and powered away to a 1.8594-second win, beating Telitz to the line for the second time that day.
With his sweep of the Pro Mazda category, Jamin has closed to within 74 points of the championship leader with three races remaining. A total of 99 points are still on the table for any individual driver, so while Nico has not been mathematically eliminated from the championship, it’s definitely a long shot. As such, Nico and the team will be focused on once again dominating the season finale as they did in 2015 in the USF2000 series. The final rounds of the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires will take place on September 9-11 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, CA.
NICO JAMIN – PRO MAZDA – MAZDA #2
Qualifying: 1st – 1:18.1385
Race 1: Start – 1st / Finish – 1st
Race 2: Start – 2nd / Finish – 1st
Driver Quote: “I have no words to describe our performance this weekend! It was absolutely incredible, I felt so good out there with my car and I love this track. We put all the pieces together this weekend and swept both wins. It means a lot to me to get my first win in Pro Mazda, after all the struggles we have endured this season, the hard work finally paid off! I’m so happy for the team, we all deserved it a lot. We have an amazing momentum heading into the season finale at Mazda Raceway with five podiums in a row, and now two wins! ”
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.