Fan Voice Friday // Fans Choice 2017: Most Improved Driver
Last week’s Fans Choice 2017 vote was a close one as you picked your favorite track in our new iRacing expansion. Brand new rallycross layouts at Phoenix International Raceway and Iowa Speedway topped the vote, with the Phoenix course eventually winning out, 28% to 25%.
This week, we return the spotlight to our pro drivers, as we look at four GRC Lites drivers who turned their rookie experience in 2016 into victories and podiums this year. It’s all up to you to tell us: which of these talented young drivers improved the most this season?
Brooks was already a top-five GRC Lites driver as a rookie, but he burst onto the scene in 2017 with four straight podiums, including his first career win. At year’s end, he claimed second place in points with three wins, and tied a single-season Lites record (as well as champion Cyril Raymond) with nine podium finishes.
After a respectable eighth place points finish in 2016, California native PeCoy made major strides after moving to Dreyer & Reinbold Racing this year. One podium finish as a rookie turned into five as a sophomore, and he added six heat wins along the way. PeCoy also managed to podium at every doubleheader in the 2017 season.
In his first full season as a Lites driver, Rimmer built on the foundation he laid in three races in 2016 with a number of solid runs. Only bad luck kept him off the podium, as he nearly took third from teammate Conner Martell in Ottawa and dominated the second leg of the Seattle doubleheader in a sign of great things to come.
Lessons learned as a rookie enabled Keatts to claw his way through the field in 2017. He won the first heat of the season in Memphis, the first of five on the season, and came achingly close to his first career podium on multiple occasions. With two seasons under his belt, the Idaho native appears poised for a breakout 2018 run.
Photo credit: Louis Yio (1-3); Jason Zindroski (4-5)