Tough Luck Day for Burt Frisselle at Road America
Burt Frisselle set out to make his Daytona Prototype debut at Road America in hopes of delivering GAMMA88 another strong result at the Rolex Sports Car Series 250 Driven by VISIT FLORIDA.COM, but he and AIM Autosport co-driver Mark Wilkins would face several obstacles at the historic Wisconsin road course.
Frisselle marked his best starting position of the season as he opened the two-hour race from fourth place and immediately made a move forward to take over the third spot from reigning GRAND-AM champion Memo Rojas, slipping by the No. 01 in the first turn. Road America provides great drafting opportunities with its long straightaways and Rojas would utilize the draft to retake the third position on the following lap with Frisselle settling into a steady rhythm as he ran solidly in fourth place.
Just 11 minutes into the two-hour event, two GT cars made contact in a massive crash which would bring out the first full course caution. AIM Autosport made the call to bring Frisselle to pit road but a the radio transmission soon saw the No. 61 machine dart to pit lane a bit late and suffer significant damage to the nose and splitter as the BMW-Riley drove across the grass in an effort to enter the pits.
“It was pretty disappointing, but we had some miscommunication on the radios and the call to come to the pits came a little late,” said Frisselle. “I tried to cut across the grass and unfortunately, the nose just dug in.”
Despite quick pit work by the AIM Autosport squad to make repairs to the GAMMA88 machine, the No. 61 would re-enter the race three laps down. With track repairs following the GT incident taking just over 50 minutes, Frisselle would run the rest of his stint under caution. The team looked to make the most of the remaining race laps as Mark Wilkins strapped in and used the second half of the race as a test session for the BMW.
“We just went out and tested,” offered Frisselle. “We were able to do a little aero adjustment and learn as much as we possibly could. It was a really disappointing day, but we made the most of what we could today. We were able to come here with the GAMMA88 car and show that we had the speed by qualifying up front on the second row. It’s just a bummer for the GAMMA88 guys, but it is what it is and we’ll be ready for our next round which will be the short course at Watkins Glen. We’re excited to get there and get GAMMA88 back to the front.”
Frisselle is currently slated to next return to GRAND-AM Rolex Series competition August 12-13 at Watkins Glen as GRAND-AM makes its second visit of the season to the New York road course for the Crown Royal 200.