Birmingham: Michael Shank Racing qualifying report

Michael Shank Racing Ready To Charge at Barber (Birmingham, AL) 18 July 08 - The Rolex Sports Car Series round nine will see the Michael Shank Racing Daytona Prototype entries starting Sunday’s Porsche 250 from the sixth and seventh rows...

Michael Shank Racing Ready To Charge at Barber

(Birmingham, AL) 18 July 08 - The Rolex Sports Car Series round nine will see the Michael Shank Racing Daytona Prototype entries starting Sunday’s Porsche 250 from the sixth and seventh rows after a fifteen minute qualifying session on Saturday set the grid.

John Pew scored twelfth on the grid with a fast lap time of 1:22.299-seconds in the Ford-Riley combination he will share with Ian James on Sunday’s two hour and forty-five minute sprint feature, with Mark Patterson starting directly behind him with a lap of 1:23.116 seconds in the No. 60 that he will start the race with before turning the controls over to Oswaldo Negri.

Pew finished the Jim Trueman Award session in second position earlier in the day before posting his strong qualifying performance. The team had been focusing on developing a comfortable set up for the race using well-worn tires, and the move to a qualifying set-up helped push Pew to his fasted lap of the race weekend.

“There is nothing quite like sticker tires!” said Pew. “We’ve been focusing on the race set up and haven’t run much on new tires so far this weekend. That info is going to be important late in our stints tomorrow, but it was great to get some laps in with new tires on for this qualifying session. I had a lot of confidence with the car. The team did a great job on this set up and I think we are in good shape for a strong run tomorrow.”

The sister 60 machine has been developing a chassis set up for the high-heat and low-grip surface all weekend, and will continue that progression as the team prepares for the race on Sunday.

“We had a pretty big push in the car so you just had to be very patient with the throttle,” said Patterson. “But we just don’t have the grip we need at this point to be as competitive as we want to be. Hopefully we can make a few more tweaks before the race tomorrow. This is a really busy track and with all this GT traffic, it’s going to be vital to get a clean start tomorrow.”

-credit: msr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Oswaldo Negri Jr. , John Pew , Mark Patterson , Michael Shank
Teams Michael Shank Racing