Gelles Racing San Jose race notes

Team announces Champ Car entry Gelles Racing drivers show strong performances San Jose, July 31st, 2006. -- Gelles Racing caught a lot of attention this weekend on and off the track. Friday night, team owner Bob Gelles announced his team ...

Team announces Champ Car entry
Gelles Racing drivers show strong performances

San Jose, July 31st, 2006. -- Gelles Racing caught a lot of attention this weekend on and off the track. Friday night, team owner Bob Gelles announced his team would join the Champ Car World Series championship in 2007 with a two-car effort. He also made it clear Gelles Racing would promote a full ladder team with cars in Formula BMW USA and Champ Car Atlantic. Meanwhile, on the track, Colin Fleming earned fourth fastest time and started the race on second row, had a great start moving to 3rd in the first lap. His race was ended on lap 6 when another car pushed him into the turn-six wall to end his day while he was third and looking for his first podium in only his second Atlantic race. Robbie Pecorari made a muscular comeback from 18th up to 8th before he brushed the turn-6 wall on lap 31 to end his day with a broken suspension.

"Our drivers were very quick but they come away unrewarded with championship points, said Bob Gelles. Colin was running third in the #14 eSoles/King Taco car and could have won the race but was sidelined by an avoidable contact from car #30. Robbie was just 0.5 second behind Colin in qualifying but that set him back 10 places. His #28 Western Union/USA Today machine was one of the fastest today but he admits he gambled a little bit on the exit of turn 6 and paid the price pushing hard to gain a top-5 finish. Finally, Phil Giebler in his maiden race in the #42 Jos. J. Albanese car survived a pit stop early for a front wing change and drove very well to finish 11th overall."

"We're very excited about our commitment to run two cars in the Champ Car World Series next year, he added. I have been trying to put together my own ladder system for four years and 2007 will see us with six drivers in BMW USA, four in Champ Car Atlantic and two in World Series, a perfect tier system. With the new Panoz DP-01 chassis together with the new competition regulations, even a rookie team can be competitive in CCWS. Kevin Kalkhoven convinced me the CCWS was heading in the right direction."

Zartarian leads the Bimmer Boys

Formula BMW USA held the fifth double header of the season and Californian John Zartarian was again the leader among Gelles drivers with a pair of sixth place finishes, charging back from 18th position on the grid in the first round. Quebec's own Maxime Pelletier was seventh and eleventh in each race, holding onto second place in the rookie standings. Columbian Sebastian Saavedra got pole position in the first qualifying session but had to start behind the grid because his car weight was short of a few pounds: he ended in 16th place in the first round and made contact with the turn-2 wall in the second round. Albertan Ryan Campbell started 8th in the first race but due to contact with the leaders was 19th at the stripe on Saturday: he saved his weekend with a Top Ten finish on Sunday with no front wing; it was dislodged by contact with another competitor during the race. Adrian Herberts from Vancouver had an up and down weekend with a 25th place on Saturday and a nice come back from 24th to 12th place on Sunday. Finally, Jamaican Joel Jackson had his best double header of the season with a 5th and 4th in the Rookie finishes in both rounds.

Next round: Grand Prix of Denver

Racing crews are heading toward Colorado State University for regular maintenance before they drive back to Denver for the second running of the Mile High event. Both series will again be part of the racing card.

-gellesracing.com

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About this article
Series Atlantic , Formula BMW
Drivers Colin Fleming , Phil Giebler , Ryan Campbell , John Zartarian , Kevin Kalkhoven , Maxime Pelletier , Sebastian Saavedra , Joel Jackson