2018 NASA National Championships Presented by Toyo Tires

The National Auto Sport Association (NASA) held their 2018 National Championships presented by Toyo Tires at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, September 13-16, 2018. Hundreds of racing drivers traveled thousands of miles to battle it out on the 3.41-mile, 20-turn racetrack that will be home to the United States Formula One race in October.

The 2018 NASA National Championships had a record number of Spec Miata entrants with $70,000 in prizes on the line to the winner. The race was one word: crowded. (All photographs courtesy of Redline Photography.)

After hundreds of tires were destroyed, fenders punched in, and thousands of gallons of gasoline devoured, NASA crowned a number of new National Champions. In full Texas fashion, Toyo Tires podium cowboy hats were distributed and champagne was sprayed.

Break out the bubbly. Drivers from around the country couldn’t wait to spray some champagne after a hard-fought victory was earned out on the race track.

Many different makes and marques of cars were thrashed around the world-class racetrack during the 2018 NASA National Championships. Everything from your common Mazda Miata to exotic Norma M20FCs. Here is the breakdown of which manufactures did well at the NASA Nationals.

BMW

BMWs were the most successful marque at the 2018 NASA National Championships winning eight of the classes between road racing and time trial. Jason Fraser piloting his orange BMW E46 won the Spec E46 class.

MAZDA

Mazda came in second grabbing five class wins at the 2018 NASA National Championships. Jeremy Croiset won the NP01 class in his Mazda powered NASA Prototype 1.

CHEVROLET

Chevrolet earned the podium spot for manufacturers with four class victories at the 2018 NASA National Championships. Each of those wins for Chevrolet was in Corvettes. Mark Burt won the Super Touring 1 title in his yellow Chevrolet Corvette.

ACURA

Acura accounted for three of the National Championship titles at the 2018 NASA Nationals. Two wins were in Integras and one was in a new NSX. Rob Krider driving his number 38 Double Nickel Nine Motorsports Acura Integra won the Honda Challenge 4 class.

FORD

The Ford Motor Company picked up three class wins, all with Mustangs, at the 2018 NASA Nationals. Michael Lapaglia drove his yellow Ford Mustang Boss 302S to an American Iron win.

PORSCHE

Porsche added to their motorsports heritage with three National Championship wins at the NASA 2018 National Championships. Charles Buzzetti earned the 944 Spec class win in his red Porsche 944.

LEXUS

The Lexus/Toyota marque earned a single victory at the 2018 NASA National Championships. Nik Romano in his Lexus IS300 fought off the competition in Super Touring 5 to give Lexus its only victory.

NISSAN

Nissan was only able to pick up a single victory at the 2018 NASA National Championships. Tom Kaminski picked up the Spec Z National title in his Nissan 350Z.

The cars were the machines at the race, but they were wheeled around the Circuit of the Americas by some fantastic drivers, each of whom had the chance to walk to the top spot of the podium and have the Toyo Tires girls give them some new hardware for their trophy cases at home.

Toyo Tires brought out the Toyo girls to be present at the podium ceremonies for each class.

ROAD RACING

The 2018 NASA National Champions for road racing are listed below (listed in order of large car counts for each class):

Spec E30: No. 22, Tim Barber, BMW E30, (31 car field)

American Iron: No. 88, Michael Lapaglia, Ford Mustang Boss 302S (23 car field)

Super Touring 2: No. 07, Chad Gilsinger, Acura NSX (19 car field)

Super Touring 4: No. 50, Andy Kwitowski, BMW M3 (19 car field)

Camaro Mustang Challenge: No. 63 Kevin Jander, Ford Mustang GT (18 car field)

944 Spec: No. 02, Charles Buzzetti, Porsche 944 (16 car field)

Honda Challenge 2: No. 10, Robert Paszkiewicz, Acura Integra (16 car field)

Spec E46: No. 31, Jason Fraser, BMW E46 (14 car field)

Super Unlimited: No. 23, James Devenport, Norma M20FC (12 car field)

Super Touring 3: No. 126, John Hyer, Chevrolet Corvette (12 car field)

German Touring Sedan 3: No. 727, Robert Crescencio, BMW M3 (10 car field)

Thunder Roadster: No. 211, Gary Tinker, Thunder Roadster (10 car field)

German Touring Sedan 2: No. 44, Kerry James, BMW M3 (8 car field)

Honda Challenge 4: No. 38, Rob Krider, Acura Integra DA RS (7 car field)

Spec Z: No. 16, Tom Kaminski, Nissan 350Z (7 car field)

NASA Prototype 1: No. 1, Jeremy Croiset, NP01 (7 car field)

Performance Touring E: No. 47, Chris Kopitski, Mazda MX-5 (7 car field)

Super Touring 5: No. 42, Nik Romano, Lexus IS300 (6 car field)

Super Touring 1: No. 221, Mark Burt, Chevrolet Corvette (6 car field)

Performance Touring D: No. 471, Brett Westcott, Mazda MX-5 (5 car field)

German Touring Sedan 4: No. 3, Michael Mcaleenan, BMW GTR (5 car field)

American Iron Xtreme: No. 111, Brian Faessler, Ford Mustang (3 car field)

NOTE: The Spec Miata results are not listed as tech shed issues are still being resolved at the time of this publishing.

Troy Messer set the fastest time trial lap of the National Championships with a 2:16:624 in his highly modified Chevrolet Corvette.

TIME TRIAL

NASA crowned eight Time Trial National Champions for the 2018 season during the week of racing at the Circuit of the Americas. Time Trial drivers had multiple opportunities to hit the track and find the perfect flying lap. They only needed one fast lap to earn a National Championship title. Weather played a part in which session would give each of them an opportunity to get it done. Eight different drivers in eight different classes drove hard and found that opportunity with a clean dry track in front of them to put down a good lap. The champions are listed here starting with the fastest class, Time Trial Unlimited (TTU).

TTU: No. 176, Troy Messer, Chevrolet Corvette, 2:16:624 (7 car field)

TT1: No. 256, Timothy Bidwill, Porsche GT3 Cup, 2:21.431 (5 car field)

TT2: No. 119, Kevin Fennell, Lotus Exige S, 2:23.648 (11 car field)

TT3: No. 61, Paul Costas, Chevrolet Corvette, 2:23.833 (10 car field)

TT4: No. 38, Shaun Webster, BMW, 2:29.248 (10 car field)

TT5: No. 3,3 Bryce Kliewer, BMW 330i, 2:34.945 (6 car field)

TTE: No. 47, Chris Kopitski, Mazda MX-5, 2:40.706 (7 car field)

TTD: No. 9, Marcelo Vine, Porsche 944, 2:42.920 (5 car field)

Spraying champagne is an awesome moment but you gotta watch your eyes. Champagne stings!

Congratulations to all of the 2018 NASA National Champions. Well done!

Enjoy this terrific video from Toyo Tires recapping the action:

 

About the author

Rob Krider

Rob Krider’s mantra is “Race Anything, Win Everything” and is a multi-champion driver who currently competes in the NASA Honda Challenge series.
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