Uncle Joe Benson running a Formula Mazda on the Irwindale Speedway half-mile, 7/99.
July 11, 1999: Uncle Joe tested a Formula Mazda in preparation for that spec series debut on the Irwindale Speedway half-mile oval. In addition to running many laps at speed in the Wednesday test session, Joe returned that Saturday nite to drive the PPG Mazda RX-7 Pace Car ("Certainly the fastest street-based car I've ever driven!"). Joe's participation in the Mazda promotion and Irwindale race was heavily promoted on ARROW 93. Next, he plans to drive one of the 1,100 pound, 175 horsepower race cars on the road course at Buttonwillow.
(Photos by Jan Benson & Bill 'Digital' McDermott)
Uncle Joe at speed (a 20.3 second lap) heading into Turn 3 at Irwindale Speedway.
J.B. preparing to head out on the track.
Can you tell he's smiling in that helmet?
Ready to start the race.
Oh yeah - I'm gonna be having some fun!
Is that Paul Newman
or publicity icon Doug Stokes?!
Under Jan Benson's direction,
the old Formula Ford pilot prepares to roll.