Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
Turner Announces Driver Line-Up Change For Laguna
Raphael Matos to substitute for Auberlen, Don Salama to stand in for Hand
In preparation for this weekend's GRAND-AM races at Laguna Seca Raceway, in Monterey, Calif., Turner Motorsport has named Raphael Matos to co-drive with Paul Dalla Lana. Longtime Turner Motorsport team member and driver Don Salama will co-drive with Michael Marsal, substituting for Joey Hand.
"Finding substitutes for Bill and Joey is quite a challenge," said Will Turner. "Both have years of BMW racing experience and have become an integral part of Turner Motorsport. Paul Dalla Lana is in the championship hunt in both the GT and GS classes and with five Rolex and only three CTSCC races remaining every lap becomes increasingly important. Rafa is familiar with the GRAND-AM series and we believe he is up to the challenge of supporting Paul. Pairing Don with Michael was a very organic decision. He is proof positive of the depth we have at Turner Motorsport."
Matos, a 29-year old Brazilian, now living in Miami, Fla., has most recently competed in the Izod Indy Car series, but is no stranger to GRAND-AM competition. He has experience in both GT and Daytona Prototype classes, co-driving for SpeedSource in 2008 to a Rolex 24 GT class victory. He tested with Turner Motorsport earlier this season at Carolina Motorsport Park in both the GT and GS cars.
Don Salama is well known to Turner Motorsports fans not only as one of the best race strategists in the paddock, but also an excellent driver and knows the twisty California circuit well. He put the Turner Motorsport BMW 328i on the pole and co-drove with Turner to the ST class win at Laguna Seca in 2009. Salama also co-drove with Will Turner to the ST class driver's title in 2006.
Reaching the CTSCC podium in each of the first five races, including a win at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Auberlen and Dalla Lana added two more top-10 finishes at Watkins Glen and Road America to give Dalla Lana a 15 point lead GS driver points. Marsal is 13th in GS driver points, a top-five finish at Virginia International Raceway the best result of the season to-date with Hand. Turner Motorsport leads the GS team standings.
In Rolex competition, Dalla Lana stands third in driver points, only seven markers from the leaders. In the seven races with Auberlen the pair reached the podium three times, winning at Homestead-Miami and Barber Motorsports Park and adding a third at Virginia International Raceway. Turner Motorsport is third in the team championship.
By: turner motorsport