Frustration for Brian Frisselle at Watkins Glen
Watkins Glen, N.Y. (13 August 2011) – Brian Frisselle overcame several challenges in Saturday’s Canadian Tire 200 to finish eighth at the Watkins Glen International short-course event.
Frisselle qualified the No. 77 Office Depot Ford-Dallara fifth on the grid for the 10th round of the 2011 GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series season and looked to make a move forward at the start of the race as the No. 90 car went wide into Turn 1.
“I’m not sure what happened on the start,” said Frisselle. “The inside row really checked up and then something happened with the No. 90 in front of me and I was very unsure of who was inside of me so I just played it safe through there.”
Once the dust had settled, Frisselle slotted into the fifth position and despite setting a decently quick pace, saw those lap times compromised as he quickly began to struggle with rear grip. Doran Racing made the call to bring Frisselle to pit road for changes during the race’s one and only caution on Lap 10.
The team used the caution as an opportunity to put co-driver Henri Richard into the car as he ran the middle stint of the race before handing the No. 77 back over to Frisselle.
The grip issues continued throughout the rest of Richard’s stint and the No. 77 would go a lap down before Frisselle returned to the controls. Despite rebounding with a much quicker pace toward the end of the race, there was just too much ground for Frisselle to make up in the shorter two-hour sprint event.
“We started struggling with rear grip early on so we made some tire pressure adjustments and then we put Henri (Richard) in,” offered Frisselle. “Unfortunately then we were having front tire blistering issues so Henri lost a good chunk of time and by the time I went out, we were down a lap and we just went through our paces from there. Toward the end of the race, I was around the No. 61 car which finished fourth today and our pace was very good in comparison so it was unfortunate that we couldn’t show the speed of our car today. The Office Depot car definitely had speed on newer tires but we just didn’t get what we wanted today.”