Road Atlanta: Petersen/White Lightning qualifying report

Petersen/ White Lightning to Start Petit Le Mans In GT Top-Ten BRASELTON, Ga., Sept. 24, 2004 -- In pursuit of its first American Le Mans Series (ALMS) championship title, Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing will start tomorrow's Petit...

Petersen/ White Lightning to Start Petit Le Mans In GT Top-Ten

BRASELTON, Ga., Sept. 24, 2004 -- In pursuit of its first American Le Mans Series (ALMS) championship title, Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing will start tomorrow's Petit Le Mans ninth in GT class. David Murry, of Cumming, Ga., qualified the No. 31 Westward Ho Casino/ MMPIE/ PAWS/ Michelin Porsche 911 GT3 RSR with a time of one minute, 24.168 seconds around the 2.54-mile, 12-turn Road Atlanta facility for the ten hour or 1,000 mile endurance event. Murry, who will co-drive with Long Beach, California's Craig Stanton, will take the green flag at noon (eastern) with live coverage on SPEED.

The Michael Petersen-owned team had regularly run in the top-five in pre-event practice for the eighth-round of the nine-race ALMS season prior to today's qualifying session. However, racing luck was not on the side of the two-time 24 Hours of Le Mans-winning team. Murry was blocked several times by traffic aborting his hot laps in the Porsche while the Michelin tires were at their best. Despite being relegated to its lowest qualifying position in several seasons, the White Lightning Racing-prepared Porsche has been primed since the first day with lasting the endurance event in mind. The preparation has left the team optimistic about the seventh-annual Petit Le Mans. Adding to the excitement of tomorrow's GT chase for Petersen/ White Lightning is the fact that Murry and Stanton will be the only two-driver team in the GT class. All of their competitors will utilize three-driver line-ups to last the full race distance.

quotes...

David Murry: "Qualifying didn't go as well as I would have liked it to. Our time was almost a full-second slower than I feel we could have gone. I was trying to get a clear lap and the 78 car spun in front of me in turn-one. So, by that time the tire pressure had gone-up too high. I came in to the pits to bleed the pressure out, got back out and put up the time that put us ninth. I am really disappointed for the crew guys because they worked really, really hard to get the car together. We have a great car. Unfortunately, we didn't get the lap we wanted to. We have a good race car but it'll take more time to get the Petersen/ White Lightning car up through the field. But, we can do that and have a good run at the end."

Craig Stanton: "We are actually really optimistic about the race. Qualifying went OK; we just got caught-up in traffic. It is literally not David's fault. It's just one of those things. David has had some wonderful qualifying runs this year and so have I. We have a good race setup for tomorrow. We'll be fine. It's David's home track and he's going start and roll right up through the pack. We're just going to keep a good, steady pace right up through the whole event. Our goal is to keep up the best mean average, stay on the track and take our first win of the season. The Petersen/ White Lightning team is doing a great job and we are just going to continue on with our plan."

For more, please visit www.petersenmotorsports.com.

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Series ALMS
Drivers David Murry , Craig Stanton , Michael Petersen