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Old 12-14-2006
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dalyduo dalyduo is offline
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Thumbs up Skip Barber - Mazda Linkage is Official!

What a pleasant surprise!

Here's the link!
Official Skip Barber - Mazda Announcement!

Here's the text:

Mazda and Skip Barber Racing School Announce
Long Term Partnership


World’s Largest Sports Car Company Teams with Largest Racing and Driving School

ORLANDO, Fla. - Mazda North American Operations and Skip Barber Racing School LLC announced today a new, long-term partnership agreement that promises to reshape the world of competitive motorsports. The agreement will deliver a broad range of programs designed to further define and strengthen the U.S. motorsports ‘‘ladder’’ through which drivers learn and gain experience on their way to the top ranks of amateur and professional racing.

Mazda will supply vehicles to Skip Barber for exclusive use in the ‘‘Skip Barber Driving School Powered by Mazda.’’ The school annually graduates more than 7,000 students and will feature the MAZDA3, MX-5 and RX-8 cars in a variety of purpose-built exercises at Skip Barber’s premier base locations, including Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in California, Sebring International Raceway and Daytona International Speedway in Florida, Road America in Wisconsin, and Lime Rock Park in Connecticut.

In addition, Mazda engines will soon provide power to the 120 racecars used in the ‘‘Skip Barber Racing School Powered by Mazda” and the ‘‘Skip Barber Race Series Powered by Mazda.’’ Skip Barber’s Racing School annually graduates more than 5,000 students and is offered at more than 20 prominent racetracks across the nation. Graduates include drivers such as Jeff Gordon, Michael and Marco Andretti, Juan Pablo Montoya and many other marquee names in professional racing.

Many Racing School graduates go on to race in the Skip Barber Race Series, long considered one of the key rungs on the motorsports development ladder. More than 1,000 competitors participate each year in one or more of its four regional championships, a masters national championship, and/or the prestigious entry level semi-pro series, the BFGoodrich Skip Barber National Presented by RACER.

‘‘We are committed to developing the next generation of racers with a ladder system that provides drivers with Mazda and Mazda-powered open and closed-wheel cars throughout their careers,’’ said Robert Davis, senior vice president, product development and quality, and the man responsible for Mazda’s North American Motorsports operations under the MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development banner. ‘‘Skip Barber is the perfect partner to help us realize this vision.’’

‘‘The motorsports development path to achievement is about to get a lot clearer,’’ said George Ayres, president and COO of Skip Barber Racing School, LLC. ‘‘Skip Barber trains many of the world’s top drivers and our leadership in this area will help strengthen Mazda’s motorsports program. Mazda vehicles and engines will in turn help solidify our position as the leader in instructional and racing excellence for drivers who want to succeed.’’

Davis and Ayres each noted a series of connections and like-minded purposes that helped lead to the formation of the partnership. ‘‘On any given weekend, there are more Mazdas on the road-race tracks of America than any other brand of vehicle,’’ said Davis. ‘‘We want the best-trained drivers in these cars and that is what Skip Barber is all about.’’

‘‘More than 50 Skip Barber-trained drivers are currently racing Mazda or Mazda-powered cars in professional series races right now,’’ said Ayres. ‘‘Dozens more are participating in amateur class events such as Spec Miata. From Champ Car Atlantic powered by Mazda to ALMS and the Grand-Am Cup Series, the connections between our drivers and Mazda are strong and will grow stronger as a result of this partnership.’’


Headquartered in Irvine, Calif., Mazda North American Operations oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States, Canada and Mexico through nearly 900 dealers. Operations in Canada are managed by Mazda Canada, Inc., located in Ontario, Canada, and in Mexico by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City. More information on the company is available at www.MazdaUSA.com, or on MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development at www.MazdaspeedMotorsports.com.

Headquartered in Lakeville, Conn., and operating out of five base locations (Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in California; Lime Rock Park in Connecticut; Road America in Wisconsin; and Sebring International Raceway and Daytona International Speedway, both in Florida), Skip Barber is the world’s largest racing and driving school, available at more than 20 race tracks across the U.S. and Canada. In addition to the Skip Barber Racing School, the company also runs the Skip Barber Driving School and the new High Performance Driving School. The company also operates six separate open-wheel racing championships, including the prestigious entry level pro series, the BFGoodrich Skip Barber National Presented by RACER. More information is available by calling 860.435.1300, and at www.skipbarber.com
Skip Barber Staff

And here's the picture...

The name and brand badge look like they've always been there...
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Last edited by dalyduo; 12-14-2006 at 04:22 PM.
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Old 12-14-2006
Willy P Willy P is offline
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Re: MAZDA Announcement is Official!

Seems like I will be driving a Formula Mazda instead of the Formula Dodge R/T 2000. Dodge was a great contributor to the Skip Barber Family with the school and series. I am very exited to see what Mazda will have in store for Skip Barber.
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Old 12-14-2006
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John Greist John Greist is offline
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Re: Skip Barber Mazda Linkage is Official!

More than 1,000 competitors participate each year in one or more of its four regional championships, a masters national championship, and/or the prestigious entry level semi-pro series, the BFGoodrich Skip Barber National Presented by RACER.

I'm having trouble with the maths. Checking SBR website I found:

Eastern 119
Midwest 83
Southern 53
Western 56
National 36
Masters National 31

Which totals 378, so to get to "more than 1,000," 622 are going to create the largest weekends ever in SBR history as the Western and Southern Series continue.

Hyperbole or truth-in-advertising?
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Old 12-14-2006
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Re: Skip Barber Mazda Linkage is Official!

I think that number must be 'total seats sold'. They must have forgotten that quite a few their customers sign up for more than one weekend a year, and sometimes even double or triple a weekend. Not surprising, considering how much they value their customers.

And hey, what's the big deal? I'm sure Mazda doesn't mind paying for 1,000+ 'competitors' and only getting 378. It's not like their shareholders will care..
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Old 12-14-2006
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LimeRockRacer LimeRockRacer is offline
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Re: Skip Barber Mazda Linkage is Official!

It's kind of like the cost of parts when you look down at your crash damage report...
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Old 12-14-2006
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jeffrey Pietz jeffrey Pietz is offline
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Re: Skip Barber Mazda Linkage is Official!

Well John, you were worried about the apparent indifference that the senior skippy guys seemed to have with all the maintainence problems at Road Atlanta. Now I think we know why. They were not interested in anything related to Dodge engines anymore. Zoom Zoom. Anybody know when we get the new engines or anything about those new engines?
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