It’s been a great season so far for RTF driver Jack Baruth who is leading the points chase in NASA Honda Challenge. With five wins in five starts, he has a comfortable margin in his Pirelli-World-Challenge-spec #144 Honda Accord Coupe V6.
In March of this year, RTF added the ex-Rains-Racing 2014 Accord to its existing stable of “Marilyn”, the MX-5 Cup car that runs in AER, and team founder Baruth’s 1995 Plymouth Neon which runs SCCA STU and NASA PTE.
The season started with what looked like bad luck — due to heavy rain at the NCM event, Baruth found himself short on series-legal rain tires and had to move to NASA’s no-holds-barred Super Unlimited class. He grabbed several positions at the start and ended up finishing second in a 12-car class containing everything from Saker prototypes to IMSA Caymans.
The next day, the race cleared and Baruth won by 37 seconds.
This was enough margin of victory to ensure that the next four races, at Mid-Ohio, were all but unopposed in class. Baruth took all four wins, both in H1 and in Honda Challenge overall, setting two lap records and frequently making up as many as 20 positions in mixed-class racing.
The goal? To sew up the season championship in Honda Challenge and then bring a slightly re-configured Accord to the Super Touring 4 class, just in time to play spoiler for the end-of-season races. There’s also a non-NASA race ahead for the Accord, so watch this space!