Birmingham: Spirit of Daytona Racing qualifying report

Spirit of Daytona Racing Fastest Porsche-powered Daytona Prototype in Qualifying for Porsche 250 (Birmingham, AL) 18 July 09 -- Antonio Garcia qualified the No. 09 Spirit of Daytona Racing Porsche V8-powered Coyote fifth on the grid...

Spirit of Daytona Racing Fastest Porsche-powered Daytona Prototype in Qualifying for Porsche 250

(Birmingham, AL) 18 July 09 -- Antonio Garcia qualified the No. 09 Spirit of Daytona Racing Porsche V8-powered Coyote fifth on the grid for Sunday's Porsche 250 presented by Legacy Credit Union with a fast lap time of 1:21.516-seconds on Saturday.

Garcia will open the two hour and forty-five minute race from behind the wheel before turning the Coyote over to co-driver Buddy Rice as the Rolex Sports Car Series stages round eight of the 2009 championship.

The Rolex 24 At Daytona-winning duo are utilizing the No. 09 Coyote during the Porsche 250 weekend as repairs are being made to the newest-specification Coyote, which was damaged in the previous round of Rolex Sports Car Series action at Daytona International Speedway after a tire problem. The incident was a setback for Spirit of Daytona's Coyote program, but the team is making the most of the situation as the No. 09 Coyote had a strong outing at Barber Motorsports Park in 2008, and is once again showing strength despite the low grip on the 2.3-mile circuit just outside of Birmingham.

Garcia was within the top ten from his very first flying lap as he continued to improve his times to move up to fifth at the checkered flag.

"There was a small problem with the brakes, so I couldn't be quite as aggressive as I wanted to be because they were a little inconsistent," said Garcia. "I drove a little bit behind the car-just trying to not make any mistakes but still getting a good time. We are getting I think at least 99% out of what this car can offer. Tomorrow could be a little difficult with the traffic and going off-line, because the pick-up should be a factor but we will just see what happens."

"Seeing how well these guys are going in the old Coyote obviously makes me wonder where we would be if we had the new car this weekend, but I'm happy to be the lead Porsche-powered car for the Porsche 250!" said team owner Troy Flis. "We are just making the most out of the situation, and we knew we had a car that went well here last season so hopefully we can have another good run tomorrow. We have a shot at getting on the podium so long as we don't get taken out like we did here last year! Antonio did a great job today and I'm just looking forward to seeing what we can do in the race."

The Porsche 250 will take the green flag at 3:00 PM EDT, with SPEED bringing live coverage of the race.

-credit: sodr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Antonio Garcia , Buddy Rice