Double Podium Results for Group-A Racing at Thompson

Lindenhurst, New York (June 3, 2015) – This past weekend was the time many

Jose Armida #7 MSR Houston

Jose Armida #7 MSR Houston

people in the motorsports industry were waiting for; the inaugural Formula Lites Series race weekend. With big commercial partners behind the series such as Honda HPD & Pirelli, along with beautiful modern state-of-the-art cars built by Crawford Composites, many were anxious to see it officially happen.

Group-A Racing was one of those anxious after starting to plan a program to run in the series a little over a year ago. The team had two young drivers with 17 year old Chinese driver Jackie Ding and 21 year old Mexican Jose Armida, who raced with Group-A in F2000 during the 2013 season.

Jackie Ding #86 Huawei Honor, EVE Energy

Jackie Ding #86 Huawei Honor, EVE Energy

Thursday offered all the teams and drivers a test day to start to learn the Thompson Speedway layout and the series spec FL-15 car. Lead engineer, Angelo Zarra, had a long list of things to test on the setups to start learning about the car. Each session offered them more time to try more things and give the drivers more time to tune their driving style for this new car. Both the team & drivers improved every session, setting its fastest times of the day during the last session despite tires being old and the track being much hotter.

“So far I can’t really have any complaints.” Said team manager Jonathan Scarallo. “Both drivers have kept the cars on track; we learned a tremendous amount about the FL-15 cars and they have run flawlessly right out of the Crawford factory.”

Friday offered everybody two more practice sessions and then qualifying for race one on Saturday. Sadly, during the opening minutes of practice that morning Jackie Ding made an error causing an off and a crash. The damage consisted of both left side corners along with the front wing & nose. The team got on it immediately, thrashing to put the car back together and managed to get it all fixed in just 3 hours time so that he could make qualifying.

Jackie then returned the favor to the team putting in a last lap flyer placing him third on the grid. Jose did the same thing as well placing him fifth, but only a few tenths behind second.

 

Both Group-A Racing cars fought hard and clean during race one

Both Group-A Racing cars fought hard and clean during race one

Lead engineer Angelo Zarra continued to make more changes to the cars going into the race, which paid off in particular for Jose Armida. He immediately set his fastest lap of the weekend and jumped into fourth position, all over his Group-A Racing team mate for third. The two drivers battled all race long with Jackie managing to hold off his teammate for third & Jose finishing fourth.

Race two saw both Group-A Racing cars starting on the front row. Unfortunately, Jackie got hit in the back on the start, bending his right rear toe arm, essentially ending his race. Jose fought all race long, now being the defender instead of the attacker, holding off race one winner, Nick Neri, for second.

“While we always go to the race track to win, I am very happy with everything from this weekend” said Jonathan Scarallo. “The drivers improved every session, Angelo made a lot of great adjustments to the cars making them quicker all through out the weekend and the cars ran great right out of the box. It has been great to be here after so much work going into making this happen, and it’s been fantastic having so much support from Honda, Pirelli & the media outlets that have been covering the event. Now it’s time to see how we can move one step up the podium at NJMP in just 2 weeks!”

Driver Quotes:

Jackie Ding, #86 Huawei Honor, EVE Energy, Zone District: “To me, this was a great beginning to a new chapter, said Jackie Ding. The #86 FL15 was fantastic” said 17 year old Jackie Ding. “Everyone at Group-A was completely supportive, and starting the new season with a podium finish felt awesome. However, I can’t get complacent, since I am still the performance-limiting piece of the puzzle. I still lack the physical strength and experience to continuously push the car to the limit, so I must work hard to become better. Overall, I must thank Group-A Racing, for providing me with such a great team, as well as Huawei Honor, Eve Engergy and Zone District for their support. I will strive to become better as the season continues.”

Jose Armida, #7 MSR Houston: “This was a great start for me. The team, Jackie and I worked hard all weekend and we achieved solid results. It was definitely a good way to start and I am looking forward to improving more at New Jersey in a few weeks” said Mexican Jose Armida.

 

Cameron Das Joins Group-A Racing Driver Development Program

Lindenhurst, New York (May 4 2015) – Group-A Racing is pleased to announcethe expansion of its in house driver development program, with the addition of 15 year old Baltimore native Cameron Das.

            Cameron Das got his motorsports career started with indoor karting at Autobahn Indoor Karting facility competing in junior and adult leagues. During the previous winter & fall championships he has competed in 53 races with 26 of them being wins and 42 of them being podium results. During that time he won the fall championship & finished 4th in the winter championship.

As part of the driver development program Group-A Racing will be providing Cameron with private on track coaching, off track coaching, brand building, educating him on the industry, as well as consulting for career decision-making.

Last month Das got his first taste of race cars when he completed his 5 day racing school at Palm Beach International with the Bertil Roos Racing School. He will now start competing in the Bertil Roos FF2000 Series since he has earned his competition license. He will race in the series working with Jonathan Scarallo as his coach, to speed up his learning curve that he will encounter making this transition from karts to cars. He will also get testing opportunities in the Group-A Racing Formula Lites cars as a part of a driver development program.

Off the track Cameron is currently attending Gilman School, Baltimore’s premier private all-boys school. As a ninth grader he is already an accomplished award winning filmmaker, and has been able to attend camps in New York City even though he did not meet the minimum age.

Cameron has received acceptance to Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire, which is known to only accept the best academically. This prestigious prep/boarding school has been named the most elite boarding school in America by academic review sites such as Niche.com, Top Test Prep, and Business Insider, boasting the highest SAT average score at 2107 while maintaining a low acceptance rate at 12% and a high SSAT (entrance exam) average at 94th percentile. Exeter has a reputation as a feeder school to Ivy League universities.

“I am really excited to be adding Cameron to our driver development program,” said Jonathan Scarallo who is the Group-A Racing team manager and is in charge of the driver development program. “Developing talent on and off the track is one of the most important things for Group-A Racing and is very satisfying to us. Cameron is a real bright kid and has had some good success so far in karting. I am looking forward to working with him in the Bertil Roos system & potentially getting him in one of the teams Formula Lites cars after the season.”

“I am honored to be a part of the Group A Racing team” said Cameron Das. “I look forward to receiving their inputs regarding the craft both on and off the track. Between Jonathan Scarallo’s expertise and the experience gained through the Bertil Roos Racing Series this year, I will greatly advance my skills far more than ever before.”

Along with working with its customers in the driver development program, Group-A Racing is currently competing in the new & exciting Formula Lites Series, USF2000, F2000 Championship Series, Trans-Am Series and other programs. Drivers interested in its driver development programs, or other racing & testing opportunities can contact them via 631-957-3901 GroupARacing@aol.com.

Group-A Racing & Jackie Ding Complete First Formula Lites Test

Lindenhurst, New York (March 17, 2015) – Group-A Racing completed its first two day Formula Lites test with one of its full season drivers, Jackie Ding. The test took place at Carolina Motorsports Park where the series will race later in the season.

            Jackie Ding took on the driving responsibilities for the team in his Fl-15 car which is chassis 007. This was his first experience in this type of modern machinery making the step up from the Skip Barber Race Series. He drove like a seasoned veteran, methodically coming up to speed as he came to grips with the car and never went off the track. He used his head in every circumstance thrown at him allowing the team to complete as many laps as possible over the course of the two days.

“Honestly, the FL15 chassis 007 feels absolutely wonderful to drive! Right after my first few laps in it, I knew it was a completely different animal to what I have experienced before. It was simply fantastic” said Jackie after his first run in the car. “Everyone at the test was extremely kind and helpful. The guys from Crawford and Pirelli worked very hard to make the test as smooth as possible, and their effort really showed. Finally, I have to thank Group-A Racing for being so kind and taking care of me so well. First impression of Formula Lites is just awesome, and I can’t wait to spend some more time with the Double-O Seven!”

“To say Jackie impressed me this weekend is very much an understatement,” said Group-A Racing team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “His feedback matched Dane Cameron’s which showed he has a good feel but also knows how to communicate it, which is something you can not teach. He also was very smart with his approach. Knowing that this car is completely different to what he has driven in the past, every session he chipped away at it going faster and faster. Literally his last two laps of the weekend were his fastest laps. Also, I want to say thank you to Dane Cameron being very helpful giving Jackie advice. This was a great start & can’t wait to continue development.”

Team manager Jonathan Scarallo who has been on a bit of a hiatus from his driving career, also got to experience the Formula Lites machinery, jumping into the series test car.

“The grin on my face basically explains how much I enjoyed the Formula Lites car!” said Jonathan Scarallo “Between all the Honda power, padel shift, electronic technology with no lift shift and auto blip downshift, and the amount of downforce it has, it’s just such a fun package. They had to eventually wave me in because that was the only way they were going to get me out of the car.”

Group-A Racing will continue pre season testing with both Jackie Ding and newly signed full season driver Jose Armida in a few weeks. They continue to talk to multiple parties about part time and full time programs in the Formula Lites Series. Interested drivers can contact the team via (631) 957-3901 or GroupARacing@aol.com

Group-A Racing Re-Signs Jose Armida for Formula Lites Series

1236928_207763226072122_1464175682_nLindenhurst, New York (March 5, 2015) – Group-A Racing is pleased to announce they have re-signed Mexican driver Jose Armida for a full season campaign in the new Formula Lites Series. Armida, re-joins Group-A Racing after competing with them in the F2000 Championship Series during the 2013 season.

Armida comes from a wide variety of experience. He got his start, like most race car drivers in the karting ranks, where he is a Mexican National Champion in Enduro Karts. After that he made the move up to Mexican Formula Vee Championship, where he won that championship in his sophomore season. Next he moved into the Skip Barber Race Series, capturing the Rookie of the Year honors. Most recently he has been competing in Formula Car Challenge in the Formula Speed 2.0 class, where he captured class victories.

Jose last raced with Group-A Racing in a tough situation where he joined the competitive F2000 Championship Series in the middle of the season, and had no prior testing in the car. He worked very well with the team’s engineers and coaches to speed up his learning curve which led him to earn 3 top-10 finishes in the four races he competed in.

“I am very excited to have Jose come back and race with us for so many reasons,” stated Group-A Racing team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “He has a fantastic attitude in and out of the car which made our crew love to work with him. I also take it as a tremendous complement that he is re-joining our team for this new adventure. This really shows that he enjoyed racing with us and believes we will give him what he needs to have success after experiencing it first hand.”

“I am very satisfied to be a part of Group-A Racing again this season. I need to give a big thank you to the Scarallo family for the confidence they have put in me. I will be giving it my best to achieve the results we’re expecting. Also thank you to all the sponsors that have come together to support the program in the Formula Lites Series.” Said Jose Armida.

Jose will drive a brand new Formula Lites Series spec FL-15 car that will be chassis 006. Primary sponsorship is from MSR Houston The Speedway Resort, with secondary partnerships from Kingwood Marina and Fama Design, also out of the Houston Texas area.

Group-A Racing is planning a four-car program for the 2015 Formula Lites Series. Interested drivers that would like to join Chinese racer Jackie Ding and Mexican Jose Armida in the Group-A Racing roster should contact them via 631-957-3901 or GroupARacing@aol.com.

Group-A Racing Signs Jackie Ding for Formula Lites

Group-A Racing Signs Jackie Ding for Formula Lites

            Group-A Racing is pleased to announce they have signed Jackie Ding as their first driver of a four car planned program in the new Formula Lites Series.

Jackie is a 17 year old Chinese born driver currently living in Washington DC. He started racing just one year ago when he attended the Skip Barber Racing School. From

Jackie Ding joins Group-A Racing after being in there driver development program over the past year

Jackie Ding joins Group-A Racing after being in there driver development program over the past year

there he competed in the 2014 Skip Barber Summer Series while working with Jonathan Scarallo as his driver coach. He not only has shown immediate skill, but has worked very hard on and off the track to make tremendous progress in a short amount of time, capturing wins, poles and many podium finishes in his first year of racing. He is continuing to gain more seat time in preparation for his 2015 Formula Lites campaign competing in the Skip Barber Winter Series.

The new Formula Lites series, to be sanctioned by SCCA Pro Racing beginning in 2015, is the brainchild of Dennis McCormack, Ryan Arciero and Max Crawford. Created to fill a longtime void in the United States open-wheel market, the FORMULA Lites concept incorporates the latest technology, high-quality engineering and a price point that offers a modern racing experience at a sensible purchase and operating costs.

“We are really excited about having Jackie join us for the inaugural season of Formula Lites,” said Group-A Racing team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “My son, Jonathan, has been his driver coach basically since the start of his career and we have been able to see his natural

Ding, captured wins working with team manager Jonathan Scarallo as his coach in his first year ever racing

Ding, captured wins working with team manager Jonathan Scarallo as his coach in his first year ever racing

abilities in the car, and also how he is getting better every weekend. He works very hard on and off the track and is a very pleasant person to be around, which is basically everything a team owner can want in a driver. We look forward to continuing to coach him as he runs with us in Formula Lites so he can continue his progress.”

“I am excited to be joining Group-A Racing and Formula Lites this year,” commented Jackie Ding. “Having been a Group-A Racing development driver for the past year, gaining valuable experiences along with successes, I am very proud to be taking the next step into pro racing with them. Moreover, with the strong support from Honda & Pirelli, I think Formula Lites is definitely the series to be in right now. For me to be a part of this series right from the start is very exciting and I can’t wait to get started!”

Jackie will drive FL-15 chassis 007 with partnerships from Zone District Clothing, Autobahn Speedway Karting & iTianpin Gifts.

Group-A Racing is planning a four-car program for the 2015 Formula Lites Series. While more seats are filled, they do still have some opportunities remaining. Interested drivers should contact them via 631-957-3901 or GroupARacing@aol.com

Group-A Racing Expanding Racing Program To Formula Lites

Jonathan Scarallo
Group-A Racing | Team Manager & Driver

“We became very excited as soon as we heard about the new Formula Lites series. We were initially intrigued with how great the car looked along with the specifications. After researching the program further, we knew we wanted to expand our teams’ efforts in the new series; between the partners involved such as Honda, Pirelli and Crawford Composites, combined with Ryan Arciero and Dennis McCormack’s involvement as owners, piled on the excited about the series for us.

Finally, all the things that Formula Lites has put in to motion to make this series economical to run, especially given the type of vehicle, this seems to be a win-win scenario for our team. We have been moving things forward to run a four-car Formula Lites championship effort and can’t wait to go racing next year.”

As Group-A Racing looks to expand their race efforts to include the Formula Lites program, they will be exploring rental ride opportunities, as well as searching for potential drivers. If you’re interested in participating in Group-A Racing’s Formula Lites program, contact the team through their website or Facebook page.

Founded in the early ’90s, Group-A Racing raced go-karts locally on Long Island, winning countless regional races and championships. Following success in Legend Cars, the team made its debut in pro racing with USF2000 in 1996 at Walt Disney World Speedway. They have gone on to race in many other categories including World Challenge GT, Trans-Am and AGT. The well established team currently campaigns three to four cars in F2000 competition.

Interested parties should contact the team directly to inquire about testing and race opportunities. 631-957-3901 or GroupARacing@aol.com

Article Published by High Performance Group at www.FormulaLites.com

Group-A Racing Sets Blistering Pace at NJMP USF2000 Test

Lindenhurst, New York – Group-A Racing Racing continued their off-season testing program this past weekend. This time the test took place at the New Jersey Motorsports Park Thunderbolt Course. They had former F2000 race winner and polesitter Jonathan Scarallo in the car.

The day started off in wet conditions with it raining in the New Jersey area that night and early morning. While this would not allow the team to work on set-ups, it did allow them to do install checks since it was the first time out with the spec Mazda MZR engine. They wanted to log miles to check reliability and break everything in.

The track finally started to give a dry line in the afternoon allowing the team and driver to start to push the car. The car would continue to run flawlessly with no glitches permitting the team to log as many miles as the day allowed. To top it off, the baseline set-up was a fantastic one, allowing the team to set extremely quick lap times in non-ideal conditions. The times being set in just the first dry session would have put them in contention for the pole based upon times the series did at NJMP.

“Today would have to be looked at as a tremendous success,” said team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “It was our first time out in a 100 percent full spec USF2000 car and we continued to have no issues. The car was completely reliable, which was fantastic. The Mazda engine and everything was great and performed very well. The pace of the car just made the day go from great to incredible.”

“I cannot remember the last time I had this much fun in a race car,” commented Jonathan Scarallo, who handled the driving duties for the day. “The set-up with how we rolled off the truck was so good right out of the box once the track finally got dry enough to push. It was so well balanced and it allowed me just go faster and faster every lap. We certainly had hoped to set the type of times we did, but with the conditions, did not expect to, so the fact we did really says a lot about the whole Group-A Racing effort.”

Group-A Racing has two more days of testing scheduled at New Jersey Motorsports Park. Interested parties in testing and racing with the team in the USF2000 Series can contact them via phone 631-957-3901 or E-Mail GroupARacing@aol.com. For more information on the team can go to www.GroupARacing.net.

 

Group-A Racing Kicks Off 2014 Campaign with Testing Program

LINDENHURST, NY (October 30, 2013) – IMAG0622After two years of doing partial season programs in the F2000 Championship Series with drivers from around the globe, Group-A Racing is making a big push for the 2014 title. The team is wasting no time to get prepared as possible and started testing last week at New Jersey Motorsports Park.

The test took place at NJMP Thunderbolt course, which the F2000 Championship Series last raced at in July of 2012. The day presented ‘Haru’ his first opportunity to drive a F2000 car after having competed in the F1600 Championship Series one offs in 2012 & 2013. ‘Haru’ adapted to the additional horsepower and downforce very quickly, and went faster every time he went out, showing constant improvement through out the day.

The test also allowed the Group-A Racing team to do some research & development work on some new aero parts. To test was done to check productivity along with reliability of some new pieces that have been added to the car since the last time out.

IMAG0628“Haru did a very nice job today,” commented team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “He came up to speed pretty quick and got used to the wings and more power pretty easily. Most importantly he did it without making any real major mistakes, which is good. Another great thing he did was listen and applied the coaching that provided by the teams driver coach, data and in-car video. We were able to get good feedback on the new aero pieces we had on the car and confirmed what we were expecting the new pieces to do which was good. It was a win-win day from every perspective.”

“I want to thank Group-A Racing for taking care of me during my stay in the United States. Everything from them was fantastic. The setup, coaching, and mechanical work was great. I am very happy with everything.” Said ‘Haru’

Group-A Racing will be continue to test November 9th, 10th, 16th & 17th at New Jersey Motorsports Park. Interested drivers who would like to participate in these test days can contact the team GroupARacing@aol.com 631-957-3901

Group-A Racing’s Armida Demonstrates Tremendous Race Craft Despite Bad Luck

8FA734746187-LINDENHURST, NY. (August 13th, 2013) After a promising debut in the F2000 Championship Series two weeks earlier, Jose Armida looked to build upon that this past weekend with the Group-A Racing team. Although the race results may not show it, Armida made great progress along with displaying great race craft.

The weekend started with Thursday testing. The Group-A Racing team & Armida were looking to take full advantage of the 4 hours of track time to develop new pieces on the car & get Jose more experience. Sadly, just as Jose was getting in the car the clouds opened up. With the weather looking clear for the rest of the weekend everybody decided to not go out, to not risk the car.

Friday morning presented the first opportunity on track for the F2000 competitors. Jose picked up where he left off two weeks ago ending the session in 10th. But with that position, he had closed the gap between his time & the leaders. Just after lunch time was the second practice session of the day. Unfortunately, on the opening flying lap Armida caught a puncture in his left rear tire causing him to hit the tire wall in the keyhole. This put a big whole into the program in terms of development of the setup and gaining Jose the very precious seat time.

Going into Saturday Group-A Racing & Jose were behind the eight ball since they had missed 50% of the practice time with the puncture the day before. Despite that, Jose put in his best qualifying position to qualify 10th for the first race of the weekend. In the A722E000D95A-race Armida was moving up through the field until coming upon a slow WISCO Car driven by Mosconi. The two went into a hard battle for the 8th position. Jose tried the outside pass multiple times with Mosconi being very ‘defensive.’ On the second to last lap it looked to be that Armida had finally cleared Mosconi on the outside in turn four. Sadly, Mosconi slid wide on the exit of the turn making contact with his left front to Armida’s right rear. This sent Jose into the air and spinning into the grass.

The Group-A Racing team got the car back together again from the contact for Jose to get back out the next morning for qualifying for the second race of the weekend. However, with changing track conditions Jose struggled with the balance of the car and could only manage 13th. Jose & the team had an extensive debrief at the end of the session using data acquisition, video & good communication to come up with the proper changes to make the car better for the race.

The changes worked and Jose was displaying tremendous race craft again. He got a great start to gain positions and continued to move forward throughout the race. Jose would get as high as 7th before running into a problem with oil on the track from a lap car. This caused him to fall back a bit & yet again not get the result he deserved in the race with uncontrollable bad luck.

“It was a good weekend overall, we had some issues out of  our hands, the Group-A Racing team worked very hard along the weekend and that was one of the keys to make the great progress we made. I want to thank everyone who was involved for the great job!” said Jose Armida

“Jose did a tremendous job this weekend.” Commented team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “He has had a lot of bad luck with the puncture and other issues. The thing that really impressed me is how he put a bad situation that happened behind him immediately and moved up to continue to improve. He never let any of the uncontrollable drama effect him, which is not an easy thing to do. To top it off, he passed alot of cars here, and showed very good resilience in being passed in the races. He continues to improve with more experience and I hope we can continue to put programs together for him.”

For more information on testing & race opportunities with Group-A Racing you can contact them via GroupARacing@aol.com or (631) 974-4379, along with visit their website www.GroupARacing.net. You can see the races from Jose’s car on their YouTube channel www.YouTube.com/GroupARacing

Armida Captures Top 10 Result in Series & Rain Debut

1011599_488452361237028_548534706_n19 year old Mexican driver Jose Armida made a successful F2000 Championship Series debut this past weekend at Mid Ohio Sports Car Course with Group-A Racing team. During his debut weekend he was able to capture a top 10 finish along with valuable experience to build upon.

The weekend started with Thursday Twilight testing, along with more practice sessions on Friday, giving Jose his first sessions at Mid Ohio & in an F2000 car. Armida did a very nice job coming up to speed, making progress every session. After each session he would take full advantage of the video, data, and track notes that the driver coach, Jonathan Scarallo was providing. He would take all the notes on what he can do different and apply it very nicely to help him to go faster every session. With that he would also work with the teams lead engineer Angelo Zarra to work on the balance of the car to help build his confidence to gain more sped as well.

After two days of running in dry conditions the entire F2000 paddock was thrown a curve ball when they woke up to heavy rain Saturday morning. The Group-A Racing team did a great job of changing the setup over from dry conditions to get it ready for a wet qualifying.

As if it was not difficult enough for Armida to be making his series debut with no experience beforehand, he had never raced in the rain before either. But, he continued to pay close attention to the driver coaching from the Group-A Racing team about techniques & lines to be used in the rain and applied them in a very mature manor. The session did not offer many laps due to black flag causing Jose to only be able to place a time for 16th.

In the race Jose started 16th, but drove the race with great maturity. He was consistently dropping his times, as he was getting a hold of the treacherous rain conditions at Mid Ohio. He drove a smart race and patiently moved his way up the field, without making any major mistakes. With this he was able to get all the way up to 10th, to earn a top 10 result in his first race in the series, but also in the rain.

After a good race on Saturday Armida & Group-A Racing team was hoping to carry that momentum into Sunday. Sadly on the second lap of qualifying Jose had a minor off. With the wet grass it caused him to hit the tire wall damaging the car. The Group-A Racing team did a great job of turning the car around to get him out in time for the race. With him only getting 2 laps he was buried in the field in 20th. Armida got a great start to pass a few cars and just like the day before patiently moved his way forward. In the 15 laps race Jose managed to move p from his 20th qualifying spot to a 13th place result. Along with that he set his personal fastest lap of the weekend on the last lap of the race, showing the constant improvement and learning in full motion.

“Jose did a great job in his first weekend in the series.” Commented team owner Joe Scarallo Sr. “He was really thrown in the deep end with having never raced in the rain, never driven a F2000 car or driven at Mid Ohio. He did a great job listening to the coaching that was provided, applied what he was told to do and therefore made constant improvement all weekend. He was a pleasure to have & we hope to be back very soon with him.”

“It was a great weekend for me” said Jose Armida “I learned a lot about the car, track and also diferent conditios. The team did a really great job with the car, specially after the crash. I want to thank everyone who was involved. We hope to be back soon as we can and fight for the firsts places.”

For more information on Group-A Racing you can go to www.GroupARacing.net or contact them GroupARacing@aol.com or (631) 974-4379.