Champion Interview: Spec Racer Ford Series – Scott RettichAlliance Autosport
Scott Rettich not only shined in his return to SCCA Pro Racing Spec Racer Ford Series competition in 2011, but emerged with a second consecutive championship crown. The Ohio driver recently spoke with eSportsRacer.com about his title repeat and his plans for next season.
ESPORTSRACER.COM: Let’s start things off by looking back at the year you had. Being as you entered the SCCA Pro Racing Spec Racer Ford Series as the reigning champion, did you feel any pressure to win the series title for a second consecutive season?
SCOTT RETTICH: First off, I would like to take the time to thank all the people that helped me to win the SCCA Pro Racing Spec Racer Ford title. I would like to thank my parents, who have supported me my entire 17 year racing career, the Alliance Autosport team including Suren, Joe, Al, Ray, Ned, Zach, and the many other great team members who are a part of the organization, the SCCA Pro Racing staff and corners workers who put on such great events, and my sponsors Red Line Oil, Goodyear, PDI Communication Systems, and Springboro Car Wash.
Our goal from the start of the season was to win races and win the series title. We certainly felt a lot of pressure to perform, but we knew that from the start of the season that we were the team to beat, which gave us a lot of confidence heading into the first race.
ESR: Not only did you win the series title for a second straight year, but you scored three wins, finished on the podium seven times, and captured four pole positions. What do you think was the key to this success?
RETTICH: It is very difficult to pick one specific aspect of our year that was the key to our success. The primary things that contributed to our success this year would have to be our great setups, which allowed us to compete for the win in every race, and the stellar car preparation by the Alliance Autosport team, which gave me a car that was not only fast, but also completely reliable.
ESR: As we all know, winning a title takes a lot of hard work. Does one race or battle standout in your mind? Who was you biggest adversary, and what track challenged you the most?
RETTICH: The one battle that really stands out would have to be Round Four at Mosport. With Mosport being such a high speed track, you really have to trust that your competitors are going to race you clean. Spicer and I went back and forth during the first half of the race, until I started to open a small gap towards the end of the race and went on to win.
This year, my biggest adversaries would have to be Richard Spicer and Brian Schofield. We had a lot of very tight races up at the front this year.
The track that challenged me the most this year would have to be Road Atlanta. Of all the tracks on the schedule, Road Atlanta is the track that having a drafting partner is the most important, and as a single-car team, that presented some additional challenges.
ESR: Being as the SCCA Pro Racing Spec Racer Ford Series is a development/feeder type championship, what do you think you learned this season that will make you a better driver and will help you prepare for your next racing challenge?
RETTICH: With all the really close racing up front, and all of the battles, I really fine-tuned my race craft this year, which will transfer to any racing series that I compete in.
Rettich will use the race craft skills developed in Spec Racer Ford Series action to help achieve success in his future racing endeavors (Photo: eFormulaCarNews.com – Al Craighead)
Rettich will use the race craft skills developed in Spec Racer Ford Series action to help achieve success in his future racing endeavors
(Photo: eFormulaCarNews.com – Al Craighead)
ESR: For drivers looking at racing in the Spec Racer Ford class next year, what would you say are the benefits of the class, and how would you recommend they prepare for the upcoming season, so they can make the most of the opportunity?
RETTICH: Spec Racer Ford is the cheapest class to run in at the front in all of SCCA Racing. You can run in an uncompetitive car for less money in other classes, but there really isn’t another class that is more economical to compete in and win. When you win in Spec Racer Ford, you know that you won because of car preparation and driver talent, not money. In all of the classes that I have competed in, none of the racing is as close as it is in Spec Racer Ford.
I would recommend that drivers looking to compete in SRF successfully talk with other teams and drivers, ask questions, and learn all they can from others.
ESR: Before we look at the future, tell us what it means to you to win the 2011 SCCA Pro Racing Spec Racer Ford Series title?
RETTICH: It really means a lot to win the 2011 SCCA Pro Racing Spec Racer Ford Series title! I was able to beat many very talented drivers from around the country, and it feels like I have been able to accomplish something very meaningful.
ESR: With back-to-back pro Spec Racer Ford titles now on your resume what are your plans for 2012? Will you continue to race in the Spec Racer Ford class, or do you have other motorsports challenges you want to pursue?
RETTICH: My main focus in 2012 will be competing in Grand-Am Rolex Series GT competition in an Alliance Autosport’s Porsche GT3 Cup car, but I am not going to be selling my Spec Racer Ford. I would really like to win the Spec Racer Ford National Championship.
ESR: Finally, Have you had the opportunity to test any race cars thus far in the off-season? If so, what have you driven and what was the transition like from the Spec Racer Ford?
RETTICH: I have been very busy preparing for the Rolex 24 Hour Race at Daytona. I will be testing in Alliance Autosport’s Porsche at Daytona. I drove the Porsche a few times this year and it drives very different than the Spec Racer Ford, but I have learned many things from driving the Spec Racer Ford that still apply.
When did you start racing? I began racing when I was 10 years old.
How would you describe your driving style? Smooth, but aggressive
Favorite track? Sebring International Raceway
Favorite driver? Formula One driver Mark Webber
Favorite non-racing website? Weather.com
Favorite movie? The Hangover
Favorite music group? Train
Favorite food? Sushi
If you weren’t racing cars what would you be doing? I’d be playing more golf.
Current road car? 2007 Mazda CX-9
Dream road car? Porsche 911 GT3RS