Mid-Ohio: Michael Shank Racing qualifying report

Pew Pulls Out a Fast Final Flyer in Qualifying at Mid-Ohio Patterson P 11 after team work lifts both ships (Lexington, OH) 21 June 08 - Michael Shank Racing driver John Pew put everything he had into his final flying lap in qualifying for the ...

Pew Pulls Out a Fast Final Flyer in Qualifying at Mid-Ohio
Patterson P 11 after team work lifts both ships

(Lexington, OH) 21 June 08 - Michael Shank Racing driver John Pew put everything he had into his final flying lap in qualifying for the EMCO Gears Classic on Friday to set the No. 6 Ford-Riley he shares with Ian James ninth on the grid with a fast lap time of 1:19.202 seconds at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

The sister Westfield Insurance-sponsored Michael Shank Racing entry of Mark Patterson and Oswaldo Negri will start on the sixth row after Patterson made the most out of the last-minute changes that the Westfield crew made to the Ford-Riley, adopting the set-up from the sister No. 6 machine which has shown impressive speed once again.

"I was pushing myself and pushing the car to get everything I could out of it," said Pew. "That was really fun because we kept getting faster as the session went on. We have a solid car, and a top-ten starting spot is a good way to get things going for the race tomorrow. The car had some understeer, but it wasn't so bad that I think it will be a problem for the race. We'll also get a couple of chances tomorrow to keep improving, so I'm pretty happy about how we are looking for race time."

After the opening practice sessions saw the Westfield Insurance entry not boasting the normal fast pace that the orange and black machine tends to carry with Patterson and Negri behind the wheel, Michael Shank Racing put some two-car team work in play as the No. 60 adopted the car set up from the sister No. 6 entry, which was third quick in both opening sessions.

"We were struggling a bit with the Westfield car this morning, but when we got the set-up from the 6 car, the car was much calmer through the corners-and so was I! It was much more responsive as well and I think now we are on the right path with the car. Congrats to John on a great qualifying effort and hopefully we'll be able to move up together once the race starts."

The Mid-Ohio weekend is a special one for Michael Shank Racing, as legions of fans are on hand to cheer on the local hero organization, which is hoping to be part of another good Rolex Sports Car Series show come race time on Saturday.

"John (Pew) really made things exiting for us, taking that top-ten spot on his last lap," said Shank. "This has been a great start to the weekend, with so many friends, family, and Westfield Insurance guests here with us so to have our cars running well is also obviously something we are really focused on. We had really fast cars at the Glen, and we've started this weekend off right with this qualifying effort, so we'll look for more once the race starts."

-credit: msr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Oswaldo Negri Jr. , John Pew , Mark Patterson , Michael Shank
Teams Michael Shank Racing