Mid-Ohio: Chip Ganassi Racing race report

TEAM TELMEX THREE-PEATS WITH A THIRD STRAIGHT RUNNER-UP FINISH LEXINGTON, Ohio (June 23, 2007)--Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates drivers Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas, along with their TELMEX teammates, continued their charge for the Rolex...

TEAM TELMEX THREE-PEATS WITH A THIRD STRAIGHT RUNNER-UP FINISH

LEXINGTON, Ohio (June 23, 2007)--Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates drivers Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas, along with their TELMEX teammates, continued their charge for the Rolex Series Championship, posting an impressive second place finish at the EMCO Gears Classic at Mid-Ohio Saturday. The No. 01 TELMEX Lexus-Riley began the two and half hour sprint in the fifth position and gained one spot before Pruett took command of the No. 01 machine. The No. 99 checked out early, reaping the benefits of a caution-free race and gained over a 30 second lead as a three-horse race developed behind it with the No. 01, the No. 75 and the No. 10 going nose to nose in their battle for podium position. In the end it was Pruett that would make the final pass for the TELMEX team's third consecutive runner-up bid in as many races.

Overall, it marked the fourth podium result of the season for Pruett and Rojas as co-drivers, while Pruett and the No. 01 team have stepped up onto the podium four times in seven events this season. Pruett extends his lead to 11 in the Rolex driver points, 212-201, over Max Angelelli, while the TELMEX team adds a little more comfort to their seat a top the Rolex team standings.

Also enjoying a solid outing for CGRFS was the No. 19 Z-Line Designs/Mission Residential/Make-A-Wish Foundation Lexus-Riley as Michael Valiante gets the credit for posting the fastest lap time of the event as he and teammate Rob Finlay notched their second consecutive Top-10 finish. After a disappointing qualifying effort, Finlay started the race in 15th but rebounded quickly, putting teammate Valiante in good position for the duration of the event. Valiante worked flawlessly through the field, swallowing up three more positions, but did not get the benefit of a yellow flag that would have likely put them contention for the podium. Finlay and Valiante now have thirteen Top-Ten finishes on the books as teammates as they continue to gain ground in the Rolex points standings.

CGRFS Driver Post--Race Quoteboard

SCOTT PRUETT-No.01 TELMEX Lexus Riley: "The No. 99 car did a great job. We talked before the race and it was all about strategy and not making any mistakes. It was just a matter of getting into the race and doing exactly what we talked about. Memo did a great job and our pit stops were flawless. We were right in the middle of the battle all night long. We're in a run for the championship and we're not going to do anything to take ourselves out of the hunt. Unfortunately the No. 99 had a little more than us and we're hoping to turn that around at Daytona."

MEMO ROJAS-No.01 TELMEX Lexus Riley: "A second place finish is good for the team and good for the championship. We didn't make any mistakes and I'm happy for the crew and for Scott. He did a great job there at the end getting us into second. The No. 99 has been fast these past few races and we'll just work harder heading into Daytona to try and catch them."

ROB FINLAY-No.19 Z-Line Designs/Mission Residential/Make-A-Wish Foundation Lexus Riley: "I'm very happy with the overall weekend. The Ganassi crew has worked hard on our car and we tested well at Mid-Ohio a couple weeks ago. It certainly showed in our practice times and in the race result. Our car was fast and Michael did an awesome job."

MICHAEL VALIANTE-No.19 Z-Line Designs/Mission Residential/Make-A-Wish Foundation Lexus Riley: "The No. 19 team had a great weekend. The crew did a nice job and Rob had his best race yet. We were the fastest in practice plus we set the fastest lap in the race. We just needed a yellow and I'm confident we had a car good enough to win."

-credit: cgr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Scott Pruett , Max Angelelli , Memo Rojas , Chip Ganassi , Rob Finlay
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing