INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana – GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing, and drivers Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty, finished third Friday at the Brickyard Grand Prix at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) for the team’s fourth podium finish of the year and first of the summer in the No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance® Corvette Daytona Prototype.
Starting driver Fogarty and closer Gurney each led and the No. 99 GAINSCO “Red Dragon” was the first Corvette Daytona Prototype across the finish line in the three-hour race.
“We ran a good race,” Fogarty said. “No mistakes, no penalties, got the most out of the pace we had, played it smart, played it clean and it paid off. A lot of guys had issues and we took advantage of it where we could in the points, but we just didn’t have the pace of the BMWs to challenge for the win. We did a good job for what we had and performed well, and I think we are all happy about that.”
A podium showing first appeared possible when Gurney passed two cars at one time in Turn 1 to move from sixth to fourth one lap after a race restart with just over an hour remaining.
“On the previous restart a bunch of guys freight-trained me, so I was super focused on getting a better one the next time, and it worked out,” Gurney said. “It was a good race, the team had great strategy, we just took what we could get and maybe the series will do something about those BMWs.”
In addition leading a combined six laps with Fogarty, Gurney was second with less than seven minutes remaining but the No. 99 didn’t have enough pace to hold off the runner-up BMW. Gurney and GAINSCO also stretched the life of No. 99’s final set of series-standard Continental Tires that held up well when put to the test.
“The Continentals really hung in there, I think we might have run a little bit longer than the other guys,” Gurney said. “We were struggling the last few laps but the team’s strategy with tires and fuel throughout the race was good.”
Friday’s race result kept both Gurney and Fogarty, and the No. 99 BobStallingsCars.com No. 99 GAINSCO team, in the battle for the 2013 GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series team and driver championships. Gurney and Fogarty are second in the driver standings with 229 points, 10 behind new championship leaders and Friday’s race winners Ryan Dalziel and Alex Popow. The same 229 points has the No. 99 ranked third in the team standings.
The Indy finish was GAINSCO’s best race result in three months. After finishing seventh in January’s season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona, the team ripped off three consecutive podium showings. The streak that started with a victory at Circuit of the Americas in March and second and third-place finishes at Barber Motorsports Park and Road Atlanta, respectively, in April.
“At the end of the day, this is one of the best races we have run in a long time,” said GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Team Owner Bob Stallings. “We did not have a first-place car, actually we didn’t have a third-place car either, but the drivers did a good job taking care of tires, our fuel strategy was absolutely spot on and our pit stops were good. I am real proud of the guys.”
Bob Stallings Racing