Boris Said looking for return to success at Sonoma

Leave a comment

Always the fan favorite, bushy-haired Boris Said looks to rebound from some recent disappointing performances in Sunday’s Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway.

“I’m looking forward to having a great weekend back on the track,” Said said in a Go Fas Racing team media release. “I’ve always enjoyed Sonoma and have had some solid top-10 finishes there. I’m looking forward to adding to that number on Sunday.”

Although he’s known for being a road course ace, the 51-year-old Said has run hot and cold at Sonoma. In 14 prior Cup starts there, he has one pole (2003) and five top-10s, including a career-best finish of sixth in both 2003 and 2004.

His last top-10 showing was eighth in 2010. Since then, however, he’s finished 28th in 2011, 29th in 2012 and 18th in last year’s race there.

Sunday will mark his 48th career overall Sprint Cup start. To date he has two top-five finishes (including a career-best third at Watkins Glen in 2005 and a pole and fourth-place finish in the summer 2006 race at Daytona), eight top-10 finishes and two poles.

Said will have 7-Eleven and Amerigas on the Frank Stoddard-owned Go Fas Racing No. 32 Ford Fusion in Sunday’s race.

“Ever since Boris and I started together in 2006, we have had a shot to win in Sonoma,” Stoddard said. “I know with Boris in the car this weekend we will have another opportunity to compete for a win.

“We’re all looking forward to the race weekend and hopefully some great results for 7-Eleven and AmeriGas.”

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

F1 2017 driver review: Lance Stroll

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Team: Williams

Car No.: 18
Races: 20
Wins: 0
Podiums: 1
Best Finish: P3 (Azerbaijan)
Pole Positions: 0
Fastest Laps: 0
Points: 40
Championship Position: 13th

Lance Stroll’s arrival in Formula 1 at the start of the 2017 was a far from smooth one despite a significant private testing program being undertaken in the months leading up to his grand prix debut.

Even with older hand Felipe Massa at Williams, Stroll looked uneasy behind the wheel of the FW40 car through the opening run of races as he failed to reach the checkered flag in any of his first three starts.

The Canadian was left deflated after his first decent effort in Bahrain was cut short after a clash with Carlos Sainz Jr., calling it his “rock bottom” moment – but things would turn around on home soil.

Stroll produced a stunning fight through the field to take an excellent P9 in Canada, proving his talent seen in Formula 3 the previous year and shushing many of his critics.

Better would follow two weeks later in Baku when Stroll became the youngest rookie in F1 history to score a podium, dodging a crazy race to finish third. It would have been second had he not lost a drag race against Valtteri Bottas to the line.

Stroll’s form then fluctuated greatly. He was sublime on occasion, the best examples being Monza, when he started a remarkable P2 on the grid and ended as the top midfielder in P7, or Mexico where he took a brilliant sixth.

But there were too many weekends he was a little anonymous. Sure, Williams didn’t have the best car this year, but perhaps a little better was expected from Stroll.

2018 will be an even bigger challenge as he looks to the lead the team when a new teammate arrives – and at only 19, it is a lot to handle. Nevertheless, there are positive signs to be found; you just need to look for them a little.

Season High: Taking a shock podium in Baku after dodging chaos in front.

Season Low: A poor opening two races in Australia and China.