The MX-5 Miata of the Month from

June 2007

Mark O'Dell and his 1999 SSB racer!

Congratulations to Mark on the selection of his racer as the June Miata of the Month!

I call this a "Miata Resurrection" - we gave this Miata a new lease on life and saved it from the boneyard!

I crashed it a few years back at Sebring during an SCCA race, when I spun it at the entry into Turn 17.  I somehow didn't hit anything, but I was a sitting duck for the 60 or so cars jammed up behind me, and to their credit 58 of them made it by!

Unfortunately, except for the roof, it didn't have a clean body panel left on it.  The front was destroyed, the rear was crushed, and every fender and door was bashed in.  A body shop told me it was totalled, but I didn't want to give up on it completely.

The Miata languished in my driveway for almost three years - many times I considered just parting it out, but I just couldn't bring myself to do it.  Then I came across a friend that wanted to get into track events and he had connections with a body shop guy that did good work at a reasonable price.  We struck a deal to fix it up with a little sweat equity chipped in.

Now it's back on track and we are having a ball with it!  It's an SCCA Showroom Stock B car, which started life as a 1999 Miata Sport - bone stock except for the muffler.

After my buddy gets some more seat time in the car, he'll use it to get his SCCA racing license.  Then together we will co-drive in endurance races up and down the east coast.   The Miata is ideal for this duty - for long races, it's reliability is unequaled by any other car. Its easy on tires and brakes, and its racing fuel mileage is great, which means fewer pit stops and making it (relatively) inexpensive to operate.  I'm convinced there really is no better bang-for-the-buck and fun-to-drive race car than a Miata!

Mark O'Dell

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