Long Beach: Josh Hunt race notes

Impressive Atlantic Debut For Hunt at Long Beach Josh Hunt finished a very impressive ninth on debut in the Toyota Atlantic Championship on the very demanding Long Beach street circuit at the Toyota Grand Prix of Longbeach in California this ...

Impressive Atlantic Debut For Hunt at Long Beach

Josh Hunt finished a very impressive ninth on debut in the Toyota Atlantic Championship on the very demanding Long Beach street circuit at the Toyota Grand Prix of Longbeach in California this morning Australian time.

After starting 15th the Gold Coast driver was very cautious into the opening turn dropping several spots in the process.

In only his third car race of his career since graduating from karts Hunt climbed up the order throughout the race outpacing his more experienced rivals all of which have a minimum of a full season in car racing and many having four or five years experience.

By mid race he had elevated himself to just outside the top 10 in his Wright Patten Shakespeare/Atkinson Gore Group Swift. As the race progressed Hunt continually improved his speed to finish in ninth position, less than half a second behind eighth placed Alex Garcia.

"Maybe a couple of more laps and I could have got eighth but I am extremely happy with the way everything went today," said Hunt

"We achieved what we set out to achieve and that was to get as many laps under my belt and increase our speed throughout the weekend. With my times continually coming down during the race and my second last lap being my fastest lap of the race we achieved that goal.

"The whole weekend was a fantastic experience and I can not wait to get my backside back on the car again at a different track on Tuesday."

Hunt will test with the Lynx Racing team on Tuesday in Portland before staying on Wednesday as an observer for a Champ Car test.

Ryan Dalziel won the opening race if the Championship ahead of Andrew Ranger and Hunt's Lynx Racing teammate Bryan Sellers.

Hunt has been helped into the Toyota Atlantic Championship with major support from Wright Patten Shakespeare Financial Services, which is owned by Gold Coast Business man Craig Gore and Champ Car World Series Co-Owner and Aussie Kevin Kalkhoven.

"It was terrific to met Mr Kalkhoven this weekend and his support for the program and what we are tyring to achieve is amazing and I have to thank him and Mr (Craig) Gore for the ongoing opportunity that they have provided me, said Hunt.

It is intended that Hunt will race a Champ Car on the streets of Surfers Paradise in the Lexmark Indy 300. The Gold Coast event is Round 14 of the Champ Car World Series and is the headline act along with the Gillette V8 Supercar Challenge, Round 11 of the V8 Supercar Championship.

The next round of the 2004 Toyota Atlantic Championship will be held at Telcate Telmex Grand Prix on the 2.1 mile (3.37km) Fundidora Park road course in Monterrey, Mexico on May 21-23.

-www.indy.com.au

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About this article
Series Atlantic
Drivers Ryan Dalziel , Alex Garcia , Andrew Ranger , Josh Hunt