Ethan Ringel confirmed for Schmidt Peterson Indy Lights program

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Schmidt Peterson Motorsports has confirmed its first driver for the 2015 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season in Ethan Ringel, a 20-year-old from Windermere, Fla.

Those Indy Lights anoraks may know Ringel’s name from a one-off start in Team Moore’s second car at St. Petersburg in 2013. He has open-wheel experience in the FIA GP3 Series and Atlantic Championship Series.

Jumping back into Indy Lights with the new car comes at a perfect time in Ringel’s career.

“I held off on Indy Lights last year because I wanted to wait for the new car,” Ringel said in a release. “The old car had a soft suspension that I didn’t love, and the new car suits my didn’t love, and the new car suits my driving style so much more. I can’t wait to get in these beautiful new cars to see what I can do. The specs look fantastic.”

Ringel has had a test with SPM, at Mid-Ohio in 2013, and was also encouraged to check out the team by former Indy Lights champion Jay Howard, who serves as his driver coach.

Schmidt is expected to run a multicar effort in 2015 with at least two and potentially as many as four cars on the grid.

Steve Torrence takes NHRA points lead with Gatornationals victory

NHRA Gainesville Steve Torrence
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Two-time defending NHRA Top Fuel champion Steve Torrence took the points lead Sunday in the AMALIE Motor Oil Gatornationals, beating his father, Billy, in the final round at Gainesville Raceway.

Torrence had a 3.809-second run at 322.11 mph to win for the third time this year and 39th overall. He is now on track for another championship despite missing the season opener.

“We’ve got some good momentum and to be in the points lead, it’s a testament to how hard these guys work,” Steve Torrence said after the NHRA Gainesville victory. “We’ve just got to stay focused and concentrate on what the task at hand is, and that’s trying to win a championship. These guys give me an unbelievable race car and you just try not to screw it up.”

Ron Capps won in Funny Car, Alex Laughlin in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Capps raced to his second win this year and 66th overall, beating Tim Wilkerson with a 3.937 at 323.12 in a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Laughlin topped Aaron Stanfield with a 7.068 at 204.76 in a Chevrolet Camaro for his first win this season and fourth in his career. Smith rode to his first victory in 2020 and 25th overall, topping Andrew Hines with a 6.843 at 196.99 on an EBR.