Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing qualifies third for Grand Prix of Sonoma SONOMA, Calif., July 26, 2003 - Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing qualified third in GT class, 15th overall, this afternoon for Sunday's Grand Prix...
Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing qualifies third for Grand Prix of Sonoma
SONOMA, Calif., July 26, 2003 - Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing qualified third in GT class, 15th overall, this afternoon for Sunday's Grand Prix of Sonoma here at Infineon Raceway. Johnny Mowlem, of Warfield, England, qualified the Westward Ho Casino/ MMPIE/ PAWS/ XtraJet/ Justice Brothers Michelin-shod Porsche 911 GT3 RS with a time of 1 minute, 37.452 seconds. Long Beach, California's Craig Stanton will join Mowlem in tomorrow 's two-hour and 45-minute race. The American Le Mans Series (ALMS) event, the second of the year for Petersen/ White Lightning after opening the season with a second at the 12 Hours of Sebring, will be televised at 4 pm (EDT) on NBC. The qualifying success highlights two weeks of work by the team to prepare the car, which arrived late from France after a combined effort of Petersen/White Lightning and Alex Job Racing won the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The Kent Moore-led crew also made late night repairs to the No. 31 after an incident in yesterday's test session forced the replacement of several components including the rear wing and bumper, a header and radiator. The GT class pole was taken by the # 24 Alex Job Racing Porsche.
"That was a banker lap," commented Mowlem about his qualifying lap. "I had planned to go out and put together another, quicker lap but circumstances didn't allow that. I am pleased with that lap. Perhaps the next lap would have been second quickest but we are happy with that lap."
Mowlem's effort to place a quicker time was hampered by an accident by the #60 Porsche of Robin Liddell, which shortened the green flag laps in the session.
"We want to stay with the leaders from the start and run in the top-three all day," anticipated team manager Dale White about the race strategy. "We have a good, stable car to run the race with and that is the most important thing. We can run a competitive pace right from the beginning. Michelin has again given us a great tire and the Porsche was excellent."
Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing began operation in the late 1980s competing in off-road endurance events. The duo of White and Petersen joined to win over 50 off-road truck victories including three-consecutive overall wins at the Baja 1000 and Baja 500 and four SCORE, SNORE and SODA championships. Since introducing the team to sports car racing, the effort has scored victories in the Trans-Am Series, Speed Challenge Series and endurance sports car wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Watkins Glen and at the Rolex 24 of Daytona.