National Auto Sport Association

Corey Rueth on Pole for Mazda Race of NASA Champions Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

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Corey Rueth on Pole for Mazda Race of NASA Champions Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

Ziegler and Powers round out top three qualifiers


MONTEREY, Calif. (May 1, 2015) - Corey Rueth (Manchaca, Texas) will start the National Auto Sport Association (NASA) first ever Mazda Race of NASA Champions at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca from the pole position for Sunday morning's 45-minute race.


The 20 NASA Champions took to the track in their equally prepared Mazda MX-5 Cup race cars for the 15-minute qualifying session this afternoon under sunny skies. The field of champions began to swap the pole position early. Larry Fraser (Novato, Calif.), Matthew Powers (San Rafael, Calif.) and Eric Powell (Orlando, Fla.) all throwing down early fast laps. As the session progressed Rueth put in a time of 1:45.619 on his third flying lap that, at the time, bested the field by over one second. The fans had to wait until late in the session when David Ziegler (Baltimore, Ohio) put in a time of 1:45.665 on his eighth lap to start next to Rueth on the all champions grid. Third place was a battle between Jeremy Croiset (Tehachapi, Calif.), Fraser and Powers. The coveted third place starting position was eventually won by Powers with a lap of 1:45.820.


Corey Rueth is the NASA Texas, Eastern States Champion in his Spec Iron Mustang. He will startSunday's race as the pole sitter in the No. 27 Mazda MX-5.


"So far it has been an amazing weekend," Rueth said. "NASA put it all together with the help of SCCA, Mazda, BFGoodrich and Battery Tender. The whole event has been run very smoothly. We have reviewed each other's video and data. We are working together as NASA brethren to get faster. I am proud to be a part of it. I typically drive a Spec Iron Mustang. The Mazda goes so nice I feel like I am in a warm bath. I managed to run a 1:45.619 and I just kept the car under me. The MX-5 seems to reward with you a 95% effort as opposed to trying to force it into the corners. For the race I plan to manage my tires and I am not going to make a move until I know I have an opportunity to go for the win."


Starting alongside Rueth will be David Ziegler. Ziegler will take the start in the No. 30 Mazda MX-5 and is the NASA Great Lakes, Eastern States Champion, driving a ST3 spec Chevrolet Corvette Z06.


"This whole experience has been pretty amazing," Ziegler said. "NASA, SCCA and Mazda have put together a great weekend. I usually drive a Corvette C5 so the Mazda MX-5 is a little different to drive. There is a little bit of a learning curve, but the car is balanced well and it is a real joy to race. I went out with the intention of going as fast I could. I kept the car on the track and put in a pretty good time. In the race I plan to be smooth and consistent and stay out of trouble."


Matt Powers is the NASA NorCal, Western States Champion in his GTS4 Class BMW M3. He will take the green in the No. 40 Mazda MX-5.


"My usual ride is a BMW M3," Powers said. "The Mazda MX-5 is quite a bit different. The power to weight ratio is almost double between the M3 and the MX-5. It is a great experience to drive the Mazda. So far the weekend is great. NASA and Mazda have put together a very cool weekend and I am glad to be a part of it. For the race, I think there are going to be some cautions. I want to move up a little bit and be close to the lead at the 35 to 40 minute mark. I am not sure it is going to be about tire management, but I know it is going to be a battle the whole race."


The 45-minute Mazda Race of NASA Champions will take the green flag Sunday, May 3 at 10 a.m. PT.


For more information contact Kyle Chura, NASA Media, 821-0468.


Mazda Race of NASA Champions Grid: 

  1. Corey Rueth, Manchaca, Texas 1:45.619
  2. David Ziegler, Baltimore, Ohio, 1:45.665 
  3. Matt Powers, San Rafael, Calif., 1:45.820
  4. Larry Fraser, Novato,Calif., 1:45.910
  5. Jeremy Croiset, Tehachapi, Calif., 1:45.981
  6. Ben Anderson, Minneapolis, Minn., 1:46.001 
  7. Eric Powell, Orlando, Fla., 1:46.372 
  8. Sandro Espinosa, Atlanta, Ga., 1:46.472  
  9. Michael McAleenan, Tacoma, Wash., 1:46.526
  10. Chi Ho, Orlando, Fla., NASA Florida, 1:46.836    
  11. Dave Schotz, Chandler, Ariz., 1:46.836
  12. Tommy Lo, Sunnydale, Calif., 1:46.849 
  13. Dan Williams, Scottsbluff, Neb., 1:46.874
  14. Tristan Littlehale, Saratoga, Calif., 1:1:47.094
  15. Edgar Cabrera, Queens, Ny., 1:47.778
  16. Ricky Johnson, Queen Creek, Ariz., 1:48.629 
  17. Paul Arnold, Franklin, Tenn., 1:48.634 
  18. Craig Ames, Laguna Nigel, Calif., 1:49.061
  19. Jay Pellegrini, Covington, La., 1:51.429
  20. Ronald Nielsen, Gainesville, Ga., 1:52.339 

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About NASA

The National Auto Sport Association (NASA) was formed in 1991 with the premise of delivering high-quality motorsports events to enthusiasts at major racing venues throughout the nation. NASA has created programs that allow owners of both racecars and high-performance street-driven vehicles to enjoy the full performance capabilities of their cars in a controlled professionally managed environment. NASA offers many different programs that will allow you to enjoy motorsports on a number of different levels, including our High Performance Driving Events (HPDE), Rally Sport, Time Trial, NASA-X and Competition Racing programs.


NASA Membership

NASA members are entitled to enter and participate in any NASA event across the country, and membership includes an array of benefits, including vendor discounts and a subscription to the organizations online newsletter the NASA Speed News. Members will also receive a colorful membership hard card that will identify them as part of the organization and a welcome packet that includes more information on the many benefits and programs available to NASA members. While participating at events, all NASA members are covered by an extensive insurance policy, which includes General Liability, Accidental Death and Dismemberment, and Excess Medical coverage. Best of all, membership is only $45. Refer to for member information.


NASA Thanks Our Partners

NASA would like to thank its National sponsors for their continued support:  Toyo Tires, Mazda, Hawk Performance, OG Racing, Ford Performance Racing School, and GoPro.  We also want to thank MAZDASPEED, Honda Performance Development (HPD), Nissan, and Ford Motor Company for supporting our members.  We greatly appreciate those companies that offer our racers contingency support, including Toyo Tires, AIM Sports, AST Suspension, BFGoodrich, Ford Racing, Maxxis Tires, Traqmate, Hawk Performance, Honda Performance Development (HPD), Hoosier Racing Tire, MAZDASPEED, Nissan, Jongbloed Racing Wheels, Bimmerworld, Frozen Rotors, Optic Armor, Neo Motorsports, Spec Clutches, Driven Racing Oil, Altronics Inc., ANZE Suspension, GT Radial Tire, Tilton, Racefab Inc., Sampson Racing Communications and Yokohama.  NASA competitors can also get discounts from Mazda, Maxxis Tires, Racing Fire Systems, Ford Performance Racing School, Fuel Safe, Vehiport, APR Performance, Avis, Cruise America, Eibach Springs, Exedy, Fastbrakes, Konig, The Mid-Ohio School, Konig, Molecule, OG Racing, Torco, TPIS, Porterfield and Monster Clutch.


NASA at a Glance

* NASA was founded in 1991 on the premise of providing motorsport competition programs that allow owners of both racecars and high-performance street-driven vehicles to enjoy the full-performance capabilities of their cars in a safe and controlled environment.


* NASA has over 14,000 members in 16 regions.


* Key events include the Mazda Race of NASA Champions May 3 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca; NASA Western Championships at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, July 31 - Aug. 2; the Eastern Championships at Virginia International Raceway Sept. 4-6 and the season culminating NASA 25 Hours of Thunderhill, Dec. 5-6.


* The NASA National Championships will run 36 race classes and nine Time-Trial classes during the event.


* NASA runs over 150 events each year encompassing over 250 races, including the association's Rally Sport and Time-Trial program.


* Manufacturer partners include MAZDASPEED, Honda Performance Development (HPD), Nissan and Ford Racing.


* NASA Management: Jerry Kunzman, Executive Director; Ryan Flaherty, National Chairman; Jeremy Croiset, Director of Sponsorship; Dave Ho, Business Operations Manager, Will Faules, National Event Manager.


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