Langley driver Collin Jackson won his fifth national championship at the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) National Championship Runoffs at the Sonoma Raceway in California by the closest of margins, edging his rival by a slim fraction of a second.
The Oct. 21 race ended in a photo finish, with Jackson coming in just 0.052 seconds ahead of adversary Michael Lewis.
“I guess it was a relief,” Jackson told Black Press when asked what that felt like.
“It was close.”
Jackson was feeling a certain amount of pressure because every time the Langley racer has competed in the Sonoma runoffs, he’s won.
Jackson was recently the subject of a cover feature article in of Sports Car magazine published by the SCCA, which pointed out the Canadian is only person in the history of the club to be undefeated in that many races.
Other racers have tallied two-for-two- and three-for-three victories, but only Jackson has gone five-for-five.
“I’ve been involved in racing my whole life,” said Jackson, who was bitten by the bug when he was eight and went on to work on a pit crew at the age of 14 before graduating to the driver’s seat.
A mechanical engineer, who is president of a manufacturing company located near the Langley-Surrey border, Jackson views racing as a good way of reducing work-related stress.
For his fifth win, Jackson started second in the No. 53 Specialty Engineering/Goodyear Nissan 240-SX, having qualified 0.135 seconds behind Lewis in his Mazda RX-7.
By the second turn of the first lap, Jackson passed Lewis, and stayed in the lead for the entire 50-mile, 20-lap race, a move that earned Jackson the Sunoco Hard Charger award.
Speeds averaged 87 miles an hour in a race that ran just over half an hour.