Michael Shank Racing moves up in Rolex point standings Columbus, OH (20 April 05)--Grand American recently released the updated points standings after round three of the 2005 Rolex Sports Car season, and Michael Shank Racing has made a big move...
Michael Shank Racing moves up in Rolex point standings
Columbus, OH (20 April 05)--Grand American recently released the updated points standings after round three of the 2005 Rolex Sports Car season, and Michael Shank Racing has made a big move up in the overall points standings on the strength of the teams strong podium finish at California Speedway to break into the top ten in the team championship standings.
After running in the top five of the team championship for the better part of the 2004 season, Michael Shank Racing finished their debut Rolex season in sixth in the overall order. 2005 has seen new teams and drivers joining the series almost every race weekend as the series has continued to become increasingly competitive, but team owner Mike Shank still has the championship fight on his mind.
"Every race weekend, our goal is to be in the top five in every session," said Shank. "It takes a lot of work to be that consistent and that fast, but if we can do that, we have a chance at a podium result. You have to be preparing your car and doing your pitstops well enough that your are consistently in the top five, and from there, it's just so tight at the top that sometimes it's just luck that gets you those final positions to the top."
Shank is quick to point out that its not just preparation and luck that gets the good results.
"Sometimes, though, it just comes down to some great driving--like what we saw Mike (Borkowski) do at California, when Paul (Mears) did exactly what we asked of him, keeping the car on the lead lap and turning the car over still in contention to Mike, who just drove the wheels off that car to get up onto the podium."
The team, which failed to score points in the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona after a motor problem forced the team out of the race early, scored their first points of the season in the very next race at Homestead Miami Speedway in round two, where the 6 car led early, but finished the race in 13th place after contact from another car sent the car back to the pits for extensive repairs.
The California Speedway event was the first podium finish of the season for the Michael Shank Racing team, and their third in Rolex competition since joining the series in 2004. The team now stand in tenth position in the standings, and is looking forward to the next race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca to keep up the positive momentum. The #6 Mears Motor Coach car will be joined by the #60 MatlinPatterson car of Mark Patterson and Oswaldo Negri for round four.
The U.S. Sports Car Invitational at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca will be shown live May 1st on Speed Channel at 3:00 PM EST.
Michael Shank Racing was formed in 1989 when Michael Shank first began driving racing cars professionally, taking the award as SCCA-Ohio Valley Region's Novice Driver of the Year. Shank retired from the cockpit in 1997 after moving up the motorsports ladder to focus his efforts on running the team, which quickly found success in the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship, with several race wins leading Shank to be named as Team Owner of the Year twice in four years. MSR has campaigned drivers including Johnny Rutherford Jr., Kenny Wilden, and 2001 and 2002 Indy Racing League champion Sam Hornish, Jr. MSR joined the Rolex ranks in 2004, leading the first race it entered and making two podium appearances with drivers Burt Frisselle and Oswaldo Negri, Jr.