Spirit of Daytona's Best Race Finish Another brutal Grand American Rolex Series race took place at the Road and Track 250 at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca with the Spirit of Daytona 09 Pontiac Crawford. On track damage and hits could not stop...
Spirit of Daytona's Best Race Finish
Another brutal Grand American Rolex Series race took place at the Road and Track 250 at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca with the Spirit of Daytona 09 Pontiac Crawford. On track damage and hits could not stop the Oh-Boy Oberto Daytona Prototype (DP) from placing 14th overall, the team's best finish this year. With initial braking problems and an early on track race hit to the rear, Spirit of Daytona prevailed and kept the car in the race.
Doug Goad, first driver in the 09 DP machine only had one half hour practice session on Sunday morning to familiarize himself with the car and track. However he relearned the car with its Laguna Seca track setup and started the event. At the start of the race, the DPs were blocking the track all over foreshadowing for a very physical race.
Goad said, "There was a lot of unnecessary contact on track. These races keep on getting more and more physical. We managed to miss a lot of the hits, but then we got bumped big time by the No. 76 DP." After the DP was running in 10th place, the number 76 DP ran into the back of the car, while under a yellow flag. Goad was able to pit in and remove the damaged pieces saving the rear spoiler and flick ups. Goad had to power the Pontiac DP missing parts of the rear bodywork. Goad had already driven in similar race conditions at VIR when the rear suspension was knocked off the car during another collision.
After an hour of turning laps, Goad was 16th overall and more on track spectacles took place. Goad was running the DP ragged and the team was waiting for another yellow to pit the DP and place co-driver Larry Oberto into the slot. Oberto jumped into the DP on lap 61 with an hour remaining.
With 25 minutes to go in the race, Oberto was 15th overall. The sand pits were eating up the DPs as the cars were being hit off track. Oberto remained on course, even after he was bumped by another DP. Oberto finished the race in 14th place and stayed on the lead lap, the best finish all season for Spirit of Daytona Racing. "The cars were running wild all over track," said Oberto. "We were lucky with all the carnage going on that we finished the way we did on the lead lap." The team will remain in the west coast as they prep the 09 DP for the Phoenix race on May 13th.