The Driver

JohnLike most red-blooded Americans, the most important item on John Comeskey’s agenda after graduating from college in 1992 was the purchase of a new car.  In his case, a 1993 Saturn SL2 seemed like the perfect combination of sports-car driveability and economy car affordability.

It didn’t take long for his love for his car and his appreciation of his purchase experience to lead to a career move.  And in 1993, he became a sales consultant – and later sales trainer – for Saturn of Dayton and the Martin Automotive Group. During this time, he sold a 94 SC1 to a young woman named Jen.  She later became his wife.side

In 1995, he reluctantly traded his 93 model for the revised 96 model.  And though the new car offered greater luxury enhancements, John perceived that it lacked the athleticism of the older car.  As time passed, he yearned to restore the fun-to-drive qualities that had inspired his love for Saturn.  As a result, he began looking to improve performance via aftermarket enhancements.

However, his search for aftermarket enhancements was not easy.  Sources were hard to find, and those that existed could offer no expertise specific to Saturn vehicles.  So in 1996, he maxed out a small fortune in credit cards and started his own company that specialized only in performance enhancements for Saturn vehicles.  His company is known today as SPS.

As a means of testing the effectiveness of various modifications, John began racing solo2 (autocross) with the Western Ohio Region of the SCCA.  But he blames James Walker, Jr. for his current addiction to club racing.  In 1998, James invited John to join the support crew for the SSC team, and John has been stuck at the track ever since!

John has served as crew chief on the #34 SSC car, the #34 ITA car, and the #21 ITA car.  And he has piloted the SSC car in various high-speed practice events at tracks such as Putnam, Gingerman, and Mid-Ohio.  2002 was John’s first season as a real racecar driver, after converting the former SSC car to ITA specs and driving the car with assistance from his wife and car owner, Jen.  John competed in two seasons of ITA and finally retired from motorsports in 2004.

Today, John is the Co-Founder and lead CMS Architect at SpringHill Interactive Media.  Along with his wife, Jen (see below), they design and build interactive websites for a wide range of organizations and individuals - including this one for scR motorsports!  John is an avid runner and triathlete who competes regularly in a wide range of endurance sports.  He also serves as the Vice President of the Ohio River Road Runners Club and as the race director for one of Ohio's largest running events: The Annual Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot in Miamisburg.


The Crew

john and jenWhen Jen strolled into Saturn of Dayton in 1994 as a recent college graduate, her intent was to find her first new car. She did NOT intend to find a new boyfriend, a new career, or an interest in motorsports. But as luck would have it, the ultimate result of that day’s visit to the Saturn store was all of the above and much more.

Jen eventually married her sales consultant (John Comeskey), gave up her career in medical human resources to become the inventory and warehouse manager at SPS, and became the team owner and crew chief for Six Cats Racing.

Her motorsports involvement started with SCCA Solo2 in 1996, riding along as a passenger with John in nearly every race. By 1998, she had joined the scR team as a crew member. In 1999, she purchased the showroom stock racecar from James Walker and rented it to Mark Rushbrook for the duration of 99 season. She continued to learn the ins and outs of race team management as a vital part of Mark’s crew in 1999, 2000, and 2001.

By 2002, she and John were ready to start their own team, so they began converting the SSC car to ITA specs, bought a van and a tow dolly, and plopped John into the driver’s seat to earn a competition license.

Today, Jen is still taking responsibility for SPS, invoicing and shipping orders as they liquidate their remaining inventory.  But her primary focus is solving the online marketing needs of clients in her role as President of SpringHill Interactive Media.  She is an active volunteer with the Ohio River Road Runners Club and a dedicated competitor in the ORRRC's Dirt Dawgs trail racing series.


The Car

Make
1997 Saturn SC2

Weight
2390 lb. (without driver)

Body
Steel space frame construction
Stock polymer body panels

Safety
scR-spec 8-point roll cage
Simpson 5-point harness
NASCAR window netting
11 lb. SPA Halon fire system

Interior
Used steel frame racing seat (brand unknown), all interior seating removed,
most interior carpeting removed, all interior trim panels removed & most sound deadening and insulation still intact

Gauges
stock

Engine
1900cc inline 4 cylinder
SSC prepared by Spring Hill
140 HP @ 6100 RPM
132 FT-LB @ 4900 RPM

Induction
Hotshot Powerstack and K&N filter
Stock throttle body and intake manifold

Ignition
Beru Silverstone spark plugs
Nology Hotwires, black
side Exhaust
Hotshot header
Catalytic converter removed
SPS EX004SS exhaust (front half only, exists under passenger door)

Fluids
Redline 5w30 oil
Red Line D4 ATF
Red Line power steering fluid

Transmission
Stock 5-speed ratios and final drive
Quaife differential
Clutchmasters Stage 1 Performance Clutch

Wheels
Kosei K1 Racing 15x7 wheels
SPS racing wheel studs
H&R front wheel spacers
SPS rear hub spacers

Tires
Dry: used Kumho 205/50ZR15 DOT radials
Wet: used Toyo T1S 205/55/R15 street radials

Suspension
Carrera showroom stock housings
Koni KO1149 adjustable inserts
H&R HR4341 springs
Stock 25mm front sway bar
SPS 16.0 mm adj. rear sway bar
SPS Billet Front Strut Tower Brace

Brakes
SPS Magnum gold front linings
Stock Saturn rear linings
SPS rear disc brake conversion
SPS stainless steel brake hoses
AP600 brake fluid

Performance
1/4 mile - never
Top Speed - 124 mph (electronically limited)

Performance

 

performance