Petersen/ White Lightning Charges to Sixth Podium of Year at Petit Le Mans BRASELTON, Ga., September 25, 2004 -- Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing took its sixth podium finish in the eight-races held thus far in the American Le...
Petersen/ White Lightning Charges to Sixth Podium of Year at Petit Le Mans
BRASELTON, Ga., September 25, 2004 -- Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing took its sixth podium finish in the eight-races held thus far in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) at tonight's prestigious Petit Le Mans. Starting in its worst qualifying position of the year, ninth, the No. 31 Westward Ho Casino/ MMPIE/ PAWS/ Michelin Porsche 911 GT3 RSR quickly rushed through the pack to hold third for most of the 1,000 mile or 10 hour event. After nine hours, 36 minutes of competition around the Road Atlanta facility, David Murry (Cumming, Ga.) and Craig Stanton (Long Beach, Calif.) brought the Michael Petersen-owned Porsche across the line third in GT class. In the process, the Las Vegas-based race team won the Petit Le Mans IMSA Cup for privateer teams and closed the gap for the season-long IMSA Cup championship with one event remaining in the nine-race season.
The White Lightning Racing-prepared Porsche completed six pit stops, one less than the competition, to put the team ninth overall in the daylight to dark race. While the third did not lead to any position changes in any of the three championships, it did result in shrinking the gap in the IMSA Cup competition from 19 to 14 points to Flying Lizard. The team continues to trail Alex Job Racing and Flying Lizard in GT team championship and Murry and Stanton continue their tie for fourth for the GT driver award. 23 points remain in each category at the season finale on October 16 at the Monterey Sports Car championships at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in California.
Stanton and Murry drove the entire endurance event alone while most teams drove with three pilots. The duo changed drivers with every pit stop except the final stop with 24 minutes remaining. Stanton, a 27-time tri-athlete, would close the event, crossing the finish line for the team's third endurance event podium of the season including a third at the season-opening Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring (Fla.) and a victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Mike Petersen: "Once again we achieved success. It's not where we want to be but the team is the best without a doubt in the sports car arena. We came back from a bad situation in qualifying when poor David got hung-up by some slower cars. Everybody came through today. We had probably the fastest pit stops all day and all night. We had some misfortunes with some cautions and got gapped; put some gaps on some people. With the superior driving of the drivers and the team we came through with a podium finish. I want to thank everybody with the team. I'll take the two thirds and the first in the endurance races this year."
David Murry: "Great finish, another podium for the Petersen/ White Lightning team. I am so happy to be a part of this team. Every race I do with them I get to appreciate how good they really are. I came in for my first pit stop and I was around several other cars, nose-to tail and we came out ahead. It seems every race we do that. Craig Stanton is an awesome co-driver. Most other teams have three drivers but I have all the confidence in Craig. He was going to have to pit for fuel with about 30-minutes from the end. I didn't think there was a reason to do a driver change. One, I don't think we could have done a driver change in the time it took to do the service. Two, we would have run a risk of making a mistake and, three; I would have had to get re-acclimated to the track again. On top of that I started the race and I wanted to see Craig take the checkered flag. I couldn't ask for a better teammate, a better team or a better car."
Craig Stanton: "We did a great job today. The Petersen/White Lightning Racing pit stops were brilliant. That's where we got most of our gains. We kept a good steady pace all race. This is just really fun to be a part of this team. We have been on the podium the past three races and only missed two all season. What a great deal to be a part of! We have a lot of momentum going and I am just really excited to be here tonight. Mike, Dale and Stefan have a great vision and it is just really coming together. I really want to thank the guys. They made this happen. Porsche, Michelin, everyone came together to get us another podium."
For more, please visit www.petersenmotorsports.com.