Mahopac, NY – Race car driver Tim Paul and his Screaming Monkey Racing team completed a full test weekend at Sebring International Raceway January 4-6, participating in the SCCA Majors at the historic track in Florida. The goal of the weekend for the CellMark Paper-backed team was to gain experience on USF2000 Cooper Tires, with the team bringing a Zetec-powered Van Diemen to the track.
Paul will run both F2000 tours in 2013, the 27-year-old is also signed as a development driver for AJ Foyt Racing with an Indy Lights ride in 2014.
A Mazda-powered Van Diemen is currently in the final stages of preparation by New Hampshire-based GTP Motorsports for the 2013 USF2000 season, and was not ready in time for Paul, a student at Franklin Pierce University. So, instead, he strapped into a F2000 Championship Series-adjusted Van Diemen, featuring more power, with no restrictor on the engine, and USF2000 wings along with the Cooper tires.
Due to the adjustments the car ran in the “Formula Atlantic” SCCA class, but that was relatively meaningless as the team was there to get some laps on the new rubber for 2013.
“The Sebring weekend was supposed to be a test weekend for us. Unfortunately, as both races were run under mostly caution laps, we didn't achieve all of what we would have liked,” said Paul, referring to two races that featured lap-after-lap of yellow flags with multiple-classes of open wheel cars on the track at the same time. By contrast, both F2000 and USF2000 feature single-class racing, with just F2000-style cars on the race track.
However, the weekend did not prove to be a complete loss, with valuable time on the Cooper tire set up and USF2000 wings.
“More track time would have been better,” added Paul. “The mixed class and mixed driver levels make things interesting. Between the uncooperative weather and getting rear ended by an over enthusiastic driver on cold tires in the morning qualifying on Saturday that ended our session on the first lap, there is a lot more testing left to do before the seasons start in both Series.”
The USF2000 season starts in Sebring, an old air force based turned race track, March 14-15.
Learn more about Tim on TimPaulDrive.com and ScreamingMonkeyRacing.com.