Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing, Jon Fogarty on Front Row for Second-Straight Race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Chevy team won in last series appearance in 2009
GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing and Jon Fogarty qualified second Friday for tomorrow’s Continental Tire Festival of Speed Powered by Mazda for the team’s second-straight front-row starting berth and fifth of the year.
That 2009 race was won by GAINSCO, Fogarty and co-driver Alex Gurney, and a repeat win tomorrow would be the team’s first victory of the year. Saturday’s timed 2-3/4 hour sprint is scheduled to start at 2:30 p.m. local time.
“I love being here,” said Fogarty, who is originally from nearby Portola Valley, Calif. “Obviously, this is a great track and kind of a home track for me. I’m pleased, we’re definitely towards the front. The issues with the car that prevented us from getting the pole, I’ll be able to convey to the engineers. Whether or not we can come up with a solution in just the 15 minutes we have between now and the race – that being warm up – we’ll have to see, but I’m pretty pleased.”
Gurney will take over from starting driver Fogarty and drive the No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Chevrolet Riley to the finish.
“I feel pretty good,” Gurney said. “We were pretty good on old tires, earlier in the day also, so we have made good progress since we have come here. I think we have got a good car over the stint. I am looking forward to it.”
Slightly cooler temperatures Friday made for an entirely different track than what teams experienced in Thursday’s test session. More weather-related changes could also be in store for race day.”
“The cooler weather does play with the balance a little bit, and it is supposed to be cooler tomorrow still,” Gurney said. “We are trying to accommodate for that.”
The GAINSCO “Red Dragon” will share the front row with the No. 10 SunTrust Chevrolet Dallara that Ricky Taylor drove to the team’s fourth-straight pole position. Fogarty lapped at 1:20.866 (99.631 mph) on the 2.238-mile Mazda Raceway circuit while Taylor took the pole with a lap of 1:20.429 (100.173).
“The 10 car proved they definitely had it going on in qualifying,” Fogarty said. “We are 4/10ths of an eternity off pole! I don’t necessarily know if that is something that the 10 will be able to run as a race setup. Having said that, the fact that they had the ability to tune like that means they have good control over their package, which we don’t quite have at this stage, at least as far as getting the most out of it in qualifying.”
By: Bob Stallings Racing