Our Team

Regional Director of NASA AZ

Tage Evanson

Tage is the man, the myth, the legend of NASA AZ.  Tage has done it all, from participant to competitor to Region Director.  Ultimately he is responsible for all officials, activities, competitors and participants associated with the organization.  While all of his responsibilities may seem daunting, Tage still finds the time to get out on track whether it be time trial or race group to throw down the gauntlet, just as long as Casper the friendly Honda doesn’t break down.  If you don’t know Tage, you should!  Stop by the NASA AZ trailer and say hello, you might be surprised what you can learn as he’s always willing to provide a little of his speed-errrr knowledge to any and all!

Tage@nasaaz.com

Regional Co-Director & Registration

Adina Evanson  (“The Missus / The Boss”)

When you think of Adina the phrase “behind every good man is a better woman” comes to mind, and Adina is no exception to the rule!  While Adina on paper handles all accounting aspects of the club, she is really the boss, the mom and the crazy lady who keeps all of us in check.  She is a whiz at organizing our special events, shenanigans and telling Tage “NO” when needed.  She also handles registration, can be seen visiting with participants, taking photos, and all around having a bright smile on her face at events.

Check out Tage and Adina’s Feature Interview.

Adina@nasaaz.com

Event Director

Ramin Shute-Mahini (“Noodles / Top Ramin”)

Ramin is Tage’s right hand man, the man behind the man, the shadow, while he may not be seen he knows all and hears all.  Ramin is responsible for all things event logistics including staffing, onsite management event coordination.  You can often find Ramin driving around the paddock with his support vehicle pulling cars in, helping with cleanups, assisting event staff with various tasks, or on very rare occasions, busting a move with his mid 90s house music.

ramin@nasaaz.com

Race Director & License Director

Steve Marlow

Steve has been with us for quite some time and has competed in many, many NASA AZ races over the years.  Once he announced he was retiring from his GTS3 BMW, we knew we couldn’t let him go that easily.  Between racing, and being our licensing director for competition and time trial, it made perfect sense for him to progress into the Race Director role.  With his skill, knowledge and passion for clean racing he has been instrumental in keeping our racing program alive within the region.

If you don’t have a competition license (or TT license) and would like details on how to do so, Steve is the man! Don’t hesitate to reach out to him, and if you’ve recently registered for an event but don’t have a license you may find an email from him already in your inbox.

623-826-3500 / 800-785-1488 (FAX)
stevemarlow52@gmail.com

Time Trial Co-Director

Jeremy Renshaw

Jeremy is an all to familiar person when it comes to making sure the Time Trial group runs smoothly from start to finish. He’s been around the competition scene since before NASA AZ was formed, racing with Tage and others through the years!  With two TT groups to handle between Big Bore and Small Bore, along with driving in big bore himself (and ST in Race Group), he splits the TT responsibilities with Eric (see below).

Check out Jeremy’s Featured Driver interview.

JeremyRenshaw@cox.net

Time Trial Co-Director

Eric Jacobsen

If you have ever met Eric, or even if you haven’t but you’ve been around the paddock, his iconic laugh can be heard, identified and loved throughout our events.   Eric is that best friend, crazy uncle or hilarious step dad you never even knew you needed!  Between flying and racing, Eric’s seen it all.  With the local success of the Time Trial group having consistently two groups it requires a second dedicated TT Director. Between Eric and Jeremy they handle all aspects of the TT group (licensing, classing, downloads, etc.). Eric also has the added responsibility of results updates and season points tracking.

Checkout Eric’s Featured Driver interview!

eric.jacobsen@ieee.org

Classing, Team Declarations & Contingency Coordinator

Jeff Abrams

Jeff has been called many things; mad scientist, Mazda Maniac, diagnostic wizard, but for NASA AZ we call him our classing coordinator. Jeff is responsible for posting of all Competitor classing and Team Declarations on the website and also ensuring the data from all classing sheets (both Race & TT) is made publicly available to all race competitors to provide a transparent and level playing field.

Jeff also moonlights as a tech official as well, which also can help validate contingency, declarations and classing for all competitors.  He also works directly with the TT and Race Directors to ensure accuracy of the TT and Race results posted on NASAAZ.com.

jeff@mazdamaniac.com

Chief Driving Instructor

John Dowling

John is a man of few words as he is primarily responsible for staffing, training and logistics for all HPDE Instructors.  If he has done his job well, you won’t even know he’s there (literally, he might not be!).   If you are an expert level driver and feel you have exceptional teaching teaching ability and are interested in becoming a certified NASA instructor, don’t hesitate to reach out as the organization is always looking for great talent but more importantly, great teachers!

602.464.3031
tntjobs@cox.net

HPDE1 Classroom Instructor

Dave Riddle

If any one man is responsible for the solid foundation of NASA AZ, that foundation has been laid, sealed and maintained by Dave.  Dave has been our official HPDE1 classroom instructor for years and is highly regarded by students and staff alike! He is a critical element to our success as a region and we wouldn’t have as many successful drivers and competitors without him!  In his spare time he also volunteers along with Norman and Melissa with the Teen Safety Driving School providing his years of instruction and knowledge to new drivers ready to hit the streets.

dave@microworks.net

HPDE 2 Group Leader

Jason Griepentrog

Jason may be soft spoken but his energy and smile is electric.  He is crucial to an easy transition from HPDE1 for new drivers and more experienced drivers moving into HPDE3 with his (and Jim’s) sign off.  When he’s not in a download, you can find him instructing, competing in time trial or in race group with his co driver Jeff!  And if you’ve ever been to an event in the early morning or well after an event ends, you’ve likely seen Jason lending a hand breaking down and visiting with participants who linger around.

jagriepentrog@gmail.com

HPDE 2 Assistant Group Leader

Jim Cozzolino

Coming in at 5 foot something, Jim may be short but his personally stands tall.  He’s beloved by all and when not assisting Jason with HPDE2 downloads and sessions, he’s often found instructing or out in time trial with his beast of an NSX.  Jim’s been with the organization for many years and is always willing to lend a helping hand.

HPDE 3 Group Leader

Ravi Tomerlin

Chances are if you’ve ever been to a NASA event, drift event, or any real automotive event whether its car show or race track in Arizona, you’ve come into contact with Ravi.  Ravi’s personality and attitude is bar none, which makes him the perfect leader for the HPDE3 group.  As drivers get more comfortable, faster, and experienced Ravi helps mold those skills and pushes you as a driver forward in the right direction. He provides coaching and mentorship for his group of drivers to prepare them for the next level, HPDE4 and beyond.

He is also the co-owner of our favorite safety equipment partner, We Don’t Lift, and can be found along side Melissa at their booth which they bring out, setup and provide their top notch safety equipment and knowledge.

sales@wedontlift.com

HPDE 3 Assistant Group Leader

Jon Rook

Jon Rook is the assistant group leader for the HPDE3 (aka – the intermediate group). Jon may be the quiet type but he has years of knowledge and experience under his belt.  As you work your way into higher HPDE and competition classes, you’ll likely see Jon assisting with downloads, assisting with ride alongs, or just generally being a go to guy for all things HPDE.  Jon also is the founder of SPN Performance which now shares a building with We Don’t Lift, and is always willing to provide his automotive knowledge and skills.

HPDE 4 Group Leader

Michael Kasdorf (“Whitey”)

Taking over leadership of the veteran HPDE4 drivers in 2020, Michael’s nickname stems from his white Miata that he can be seen racing around the track in the Spec Miata group.  Michael is no stranger to NASA AZ as he’s been competing with his Ford Mustangs for several years and has successfully never ran a participant over!  Sometimes as drivers move into HPDE4 they get can often times get complacent and run out of gas if you will with their progression and skillset, and Michael knows all about running out of gas.  Michael is a true mentor and coach for all advanced level drivers still in HPDE. He provides education and real time feedback in the download meetings to increase driver skills to their highest potential and prep them for a competition group should they chose to advance to race and/or time trial groups.

Spec Miata Series Leader

Robert Rose

When you think NASA AZ and Miatas, likely the first person that comes to your mind will be Robert.  Robert has been driving with NASA and competing with the AZ region for many, many years.  Like many competitors he’s had various trials and tribulations over the years but Robert and the comradery that he has built within the Spec Miata series is nothing short of amazing.  For 2020 and onward, Robert will become the Spec Miata Series leader to ensure that the series has a bright future and hopefully draws in new drivers with the groups hilarious band of misfits.

Robert@rubbertoes.net

“944 Spec” Series Leader

Norman Hamden

Norm has been the rock of our 944 Spec Series since he started competing in it years ago.  While you might see him shaking his fist at his car, kicking a tire or two, or asking for a bump start, as long as there are 944 parts available you’ll see Norm driving circles around the competition. He is responsible for leading the 944 Spec race class, rallying the competitors during the on/off season as well as ensuring classing compliance and recruiting new potential competitors from the class. If you have any questions on the “944 Spec” series, this is the guy you’ll want to talk to.

normanhamden@gmail.com
928-254-5400

Honda Challenge Series Leader

Gabe Ortega (“Oh Mijo”)

Just like Gabe’s clean cut exterior and meticulously clean hands, he makes sure that the Honda Challenge Series competitors have good clean fun.  He is responsible for representing this class from a race group logistics perspective as well as growing the series both locally and nationally.  If you are ever in need of Honda knowledge, or FWD racing, Gabe is no stranger to either as he’s been competing and racing with the organization since its birth.

bull_horns@hotmail.com

GTS Series Leader

Dean Schaefer

Dean himself drives a GTS3 BMW and is looking at growing the GTS Series in the Arizona Region. If you have any GTS specific questions, Dean is your main contact.

ds94428@gmail.com

ST Series Leader

Chris Wynne

Chris has been involved with the NASA AZ organization on and off the circuit for many years.  He himself has had many set backs with his S197 Mustang, however Chris always keeps his head up and makes a strong come back that has won the respect and friendship of his peers.  In 2020 and forward Chris will be representing the ST Series as its new leader ensuring that the group is within compliance, and ensuring that the ST series has prominent future with the organization.

cwynne@gmail.com

Chief of Tech & Time Attack Director

Jon Via

Jon is responsible for ensuring the tech officials are staffed and well trained to handle tech requirements, competition impound and course cleanup during events. Jon also helps to organize the UMS Tuning Time Attack Series and its logistics, season results and also pulls triple duty with website maintenance & general tech support.

jon@jon-via.com

Tech Official & UMS Tuning Time Attack Sponsor

Tony Szirka

Tony has an all to familiar face and personality that you cannot miss at our events. Whether its during morning tech, wrenching on someones car, behind his laptop fixing a tune or reviewing logs, Tony is well known and even more respected by participants, competitors and staff.  Tony also runs and sponsors the UMS Tuning Time Attack Series that runs within the NASA AZ organization, and is believed to be the longest running time attack series in the US!  He always makes himself available at a drop of a hat (sometimes his when hes off running to help!), and we can’t thank him enough for all that he does.

480-446-8863
info@umstuning.com

Tech Official

Dan Lynch

Dan has been a long standing member and official of NASA AZ for over 10 years!  He has a keen eye for unique things, is very knowledgeable in the automotive industry and also quite the driver!  You’d think Dan’s cars are “too nice” to drive on track but you’d be wrong, his unique style is matched only to his mechanical skill.  You’ll often find Dan our go-to guy for all things drift as well, either with our NASA DRIFT groups or with local drifters and events.  He also helps out with the UMS Time Attack Series, and can be seen driving the pace car or truck when called upon!  If you are ever around the paddock, stop by and check out what pin Dan has on his collar for the day as he always has cool vintage pins and art to strike conversations!

Tech Official

Niaman Eaton

Niaman has been around for many years with NASA AZ as a HPDE participant, time attacker, time trial competitor and now more recently a tech official.  He’s always eager to help with any and all things NASA related!  He’s been known to compete so hard that he quite literally has driven his car till the wheels fell off!  In his spare time he also creates and maintains the UMS Tuning Time Attack event stickers, graphics and other imagery.

Tech Official

Josh Wisman

Josh is a man of many words, and even more jokes.  Anytime you are in tech or on the scales you are bound to have a good laugh around him.  He’s very meticulous about everything he does from annual tech to his lap times.  He started out the past few years working his way up the HPDE ranks and now runs within the time trial group, he’s always willing to lend a hand, tool, gas, whatever one may need, just look for the vape cloud around the paddock and you’ll know where to find him.

Tech Official

Robert Celaya (“Robbie”)

Robert is our newest tech official.  He is a guru at all things relating to tires and wheels.  Having worked in the tire industry for years with Discount Tire, Tires2Go and more recently Wheel Pros, he is no stranger to race cars and street cars alike!  His first event out with NASA he unfortunately let a little to loose and tapped a tire wall, but he still hasn’t met a tire he didn’t like! even Looking for tire recommendations, want to know why your tire wear is all over the place, want to know the benefits of tire shaving? Robbie is your one stop tire guy!

Race Tech

Jim Fluckey

602-274-3747
jfluckey@cox.net

If you have a race car, Jim is one of the guys who can do your the annual tech inspection. Jim performs all tech inspections at German Auto Service at no charge. At track inspections are available with pre-registration and a fee. Additional shops qualified to do annual race tech can be found here

www.germanautoservice.com
5244 N. 7th Street
Phoenix, AZ 85014

Timing & Scoring

Todd Hought

Todd is highly regarded and has one of the most stressful jobs in any racing organization, being responsible for keeping track of all lap times for drivers in race, time trial, and time attack groups.  While series leaders, group leaders, and even competitors are constantly in communication with him regarding times and changes, Todd handles them with ease.  And if that wasn’t enough to handle, he also teams up to assist race control, first on site in the morning, last person out on Sundays and generally fixing the unfixible, when not dealing with T&S specific duties of course.

todd.hought@gmail.com

Registration

Shannon Szirka

Shannon is one of the amazingly talented ladies who helps Adina up at registration at our events so Adina can take photos, talk to participants, and do what she does best!  Shannon can help you with any and all of your registration and form needs, she is also an avid driver and has been caught recently turning quite a few laps at our events as well along side her other half, Tony.  Some say she’s the better half, and they are probably right!

Registration

Christie Saracino

Christie is another one of the amazingly talented ladies who helps Adina and Shannon up at registration at our events!  Her infectious laugh can be heard all around the paddock.  While Shannon is on track and Adina is out and about, she can be found holding down registration like a pro!  She also loves puppies, sun screen and big floppy hats with bows, be sure to say hi on your way by!

Trophies

Melissa James

Melissa in 2020 she will be handling trophies for our competition classes at each event which is no small task, but beyond trophies she is blooming with many other talents.  She is the co-owner of our favorite safety equipment partner, We Don’t Lift and can be found at events providing top notch safety equipment and expertise.  Outside of events she also is an instructor for the Team Safety Driving School, avid photographer, and in her limited spare time makes awesome t-shirts, vinyl stickers, swag and more!