Alex Rogeo used a borrowed 2015 Volkswagen Jetta to earn enough round wins in the PSCA unlimited electronics Bracket-1 class to clinch her third place finish in the 2015 championship. Alex’s Liquid Glow MAHLE Arrington Dodge Magnum suffered a mechanical failure in the first round of practice on Friday that could not be repaired in time for the race on Sunday. On the advice of PSCA President, Mel Roth, Alex borrowed a Volkswagen brand vehicle so that she would be eligible to race in the special VW Powderpuff race being held in association with the regular PSCA races.
“We normally race two classes in PSCA,” said Alex. “Street Muscle and Bracket-1, and that’s pretty hectic as it is. But with a borrowed street car, I needed all of the laps I could get in qualifying on Saturday to figure out how to race the car. Obviously, a 2015 model year street car isn’t going to have the reaction time or consistency of my regular race car. By using a VW, I was able to have a third set of qualifying passes for me to work on staging and launch technique and [crew chief] Richard to work on gathering data to figure out how to dial the car.”
“I’m really glad I went the Volkswagen route,” continued Alex. “The ladies in the series were really great and it was a lot of fun to race them. I’m very grateful that they let me join their race, because they do have a very competitive series here in Southern California and it was an honor to compete with them.”
Alex’s crew chief, and her co-worker at MoparMax magazine, Richard Kratz, said, “On the first run on Friday the Magnum actually looked great to me from back on the starting line. But something went wrong in the shutdown area and the car left a thin trail of transmission fluid. We have a highly modified factory five speed transmission and it’s not possible to just swap in a spare or fix it in 24 hours. So we had to go to the alternate car idea right away.
“Actually, Alex and I have a background that served us well this weekend,” said Richard. “When we started racing we used a late model street car that also served as a magazine project car and it was being modified and upgraded between every race. Every time we got to a track Alex had to learn all over again how to stage it and launch it. She developed a half dozen ways to stage repeatedly even when going in deep by varying amounts. And she learned a bunch of ways to time the lights other than just reacting to a top or bottom bulb. All of those skills came into play this weekend.”
Alex added, “The same can be said for what Richard learned about setting up and dialing a street car back then. Most crew chiefs would revolt and walk away from a car that was showing elapsed time variances ranging over several tenths of a second. But he’s been there before and on Saturday night he studied our data and identified a trend in the car that we could depend on. His dials were really good on Sunday which gave me a chance to turn win lights on.”
Alex achieved a personal first on race day, winning first round in three different classes. She advanced to the quarter finals in the VW Powderpuff class and most importantly managed to make it to third round in the Bracket-1 class. Alex entered the race, the last in the point series for the year, in third place. The team had hopes of moving up from there, but said that very honestly once the Magnum broke all they wanted to do realistically was hold onto that third place.
Alex said, “Bracket-1 is an unlimited electronics class, there are seven second top sportsman cars in this class, dragsters with delay boxes, throttle stops, crosstalk, and more. That we were able to turn on win lights in this class in a four cylinder pure stock grocery getter was a great achievement. An official from PSCA told us that we needed those win lights to hold on to our position so I’m glad we got them. Obviously, I’m a racer, Richard’s a racer, and we want to win every time we pull into a track. But for our marketing partners and friends and fans we are happy and proud that against the odds we went from 8th place in the class two weeks ago before a runner-up finish in Las Vegas, then in a car that most people would write off as hopeless as a race car this weekend we managed to clinch third place in the class.”
Alex thanked all of her marketing partners who supported her this year, MAHLE Aftermarket and Motorsports, Arrington Performance, Westminster Performance Transmission, DiabloSport, Champion Spark Plugs, shopHEMI.com, Hedman Hedders, Driveshaft Shop, LAT Oil, FTI Performance, Mickey Thompson Tires, Bell Racing, Mountain View Performance, and Big John’s Performance.