2013 MARK DONAHUE AWARD
Article by Road Racing Drivers Club
Loshak on a sunny day winning pole for the F 1000 National Championship race, which he would win from the back of the pack in the rain.
Lawrence Loshak, 36 of Grafton, Wis., is the 2013 recipient of the Mark Donohue Award, presented annually by the Road Racing Drivers Club for outstanding performance, competitiveness and sportsmanship during the SCCA National Championship Runoffs.
Loshak won two SCCA championships on Friday, Sept. 20 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis. – Formula 1000 and H Production. His outstanding Formula 1000 drive from last to first on a wet track was judged the performance of the weekend by the 20 RRDC members present who constituted the Donohue Award selection committee.
Loshak’s brand new and very quick JDR ETE REMAN/Moon’s Super Cycle Suzuki had won him the Formula 1000 (aka Formula B) pole, but car would get a real workout when the green flag dropped. A misinterpretation of the published start time basically flummoxed Loshak’s crew, who read the green flag time as grid time. Going from being a leisurely early to a frantic very late, the crew thrashed to get Loshak tucked in at the tail of the 21 car field. And it was raining.
“I didn’t even realize I’d passed 16 cars on the first lap,” said an unworried but obviously amped-up Loshak, “Then it was hunt, catch and pass until they waved the checkered flag. Somehow I took the lead at Corner 5 on what turned out to be the last lap, but I had no idea where I was in the race or what lap it was.” In their haste to get the JDR on the track without penalty, the crew had failed to hook up Loshak’s radio. “I was just looking for the next car or the checkered flag.”
Although he’d won pole by less than a second at a record 2:04.786 and first FB in the fours, Loshak posted a race lap of 2:29.859, a solid five seconds quicker than anyone else on the wet track and a testament to his ice racing experience. With his wins in F1000 and HP, Loshak joined the exclusive company of Jerry Hansen, John Heinricy and Tom Schweitz as the only drivers to win the Runoffs in four different classes in its 50-year history. He also became the 17th driver to win two Championships in the same year. New RRDC member Andrew Aquilante became the 18th on Sunday. Loshak’s season also included two SCCA triple crown victories and the USF1000 Championship as well, perhaps a first for that combo.
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